I currently live in Alameda County and although there are no animal farms in my county, this map shows that almost all the counties surrounding Alameda County have animal farms which means we are definitely affected by either smells, manure and the negative effects of high dense farms.
As far as composting goes, I used to compost. I am a gardener and I took 6 classes about permaculture which is essentially giving back to the earth the nutrients you are taking from it. So composting is a large part of the permaculture movement. Once I am completely finished unpacking from my move, I will start composting again. It isn't hard to do and it helps the soil and environment.