Your City Dump
Do you ever stop to wonder what happens to your garbage once you throw it away? The average American tosses on average 4.5 pounds a day, and places are running out to place the trash. Knowing what the primary culprits are that take up space at the landfill is the first step to learning new ways to handle that waste.
Garbage Dump Basics
City dumps are shutting down at a rate of one a day; we are simply running out of space to put our garbage. A dump site in Long Island is so large that you can actually see it from space. Once a dumpster picks up your trash, it is taken to a landfill, where it will be a crushed into a “cell.” At the end of the day, this cell will be buried with dirt and eventually will meld to the existing land mass. The next day, employees will build another cell.
Items at the Dump
Paper is the most common form of human waste in the landfills. One of the ways you can help is to stop using paper lunch bags and instead use a reusable one; you can even find one made from recycled and biodegradable materials. In addition, examine your daily routine and see where you can stop paper use: can you arrange to receive and pay bills online? Can you take notes with a laptop instead of using pencil and paper?
Other notable examples of needless waste are clothes, food, appliances and toys that can be donated to charities to be reused. There are even salvage companies that will pick up your scrap metal and tires. Your items are better served reused or recycled rather than rotting away at landfills, which are increasingly running out of places to expand.
Any items made of or including hazardous materials should not be thrown away in the garbage. This can lead to the leaking of harmful materials into the ground, negatively affecting water quality. Air quality also can be compromised by having too much garbage or the wrong kind of garbage at landfills. Contact your local waste management company or city government on pointers on how to properly dispose of these hazardous materials.