Rec and Park Launches Innovative Park Fertilization Program

The city's abundant sidewalk feces will soon be used as compost for Dolores Park.

San Francisco is once again leading the way with new methods of innovation: this time, on the environmental front. As complaints about human feces on our sidewalks rise, San Francisco’s Public Works Department has teamed up with Recreation and Parks, to turn that crap into something more socially friendly: fresh green grass. Starting in April, all human waste collected from sidewalks downtown will be converted into fertilizer, which will be used in Dolores Park first as part of a pilot program.

“Right now, hundreds of pounds of poo are ending up in our landfills,” said a Rec and Park employee who requested anonymity so as not to have to deal with even more shit. “To reduce our impact on landfills and increase the greenery of our parks, we’re experimenting with this new way of recycling an already-existing resource.” 

“An infinitely renewable resource,” she added, shifting uncomfortably.

To fund the program, the City will discontinue its Pit Stop program, taking the portable toilets off of San Francisco’s streets.

“We find that the future fertilizer does best when exposed to the elements for a couple days,” Rec and Parks told SF Weekly. “Once we see a fresh pile of dookie, we’ll stick a yellow flag in it, telling our workers on the street to leave it be for a day or two to cure in the hot sun.” 

Once collected, the feces will be sent to a processing plant near SFO, where they’re converted into fresh, flaky fertilizer. 

While the pilot program will only focus on Dolores Park for the month of April, there are plans to expand the program to collect night soil from residential neighborhoods via the addition of a fourth Recology bin that will be cocoa-brown in color. And down the line, the fertilizer may even become available for the general public to purchase — all proceeds of which will be used to dismantle public restrooms throughout San Francisco. 

Happy April Fool’s Day!

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