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Encyclopedia > Waste management
A wheelie bin in Berkshire, England
A wheelie bin in Berkshire, England

Waste management is the collection, transport, processing, recycling or disposal of waste materials. The term usually relates to materials produced by human activity, and is generally undertaken to reduce their effect on health, the environment or aesthetics. Waste management is also carried out to reduce the materials' effect on the environment and to recover resources from them. Waste management can involve solid, liquid, gaseous or radioactive substances, with different methods and fields of expertise for each. Waste Management, Inc. ... This article is about the Russian singing duo. ... Waste Management is the third English studio album by t. ... Download high resolution version (1036x1232, 413 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Download high resolution version (1036x1232, 413 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... For other uses, see England (disambiguation). ... Waste treatment refers to the activities required to ensure that waste has the least practicable impact on the environment. ... The international recycling symbol. ... For other uses, see Waste (disambiguation). ... Aesthetics is commonly perceived as the study of sensory or sensori-emotional values, sometimes called judgments of sentiment and taste. ... Rainforest on Fatu-Hiva, Marquesas Islands Natural resources are naturally occurring substances that are considered valuable in their relatively unmodified (natural) form. ... This box:      For other uses, see Solid (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Liquid (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Gas (disambiguation). ... Radioactive decay is the set of various processes by which unstable atomic nuclei (nuclides) emit subatomic particles. ...


Waste management practices differ for developed and developing nations, for urban and rural areas, and for residential and industrial, producers. Management for non-hazardous residential and institutional waste in metropolitan areas is usually the responsibility of local government authorities, while management for non-hazardous commercial and industrial waste is usually the responsibility of the generator. A developed country is a country that is technologically advanced and that enjoys a relatively high standard of living. ... A developing country is a country with low average income compared to the world average. ... Cities with at least a million inhabitants in 2006 An urban area is an area with an increased density of human-created structures in comparison to the areas surrounding it. ... Rural area in Dalarna, Sweden Sheep eating grass in rural Australia Rural areas are sparsely settled places away from the influence of large cities and towns. ... A residential area is a type of land use where the predominant use is residential. ... Hazard may mean: Dangers, risks, problems A hazard is a source of potential harm. ... Local governments are administrative offices that are smaller than a state or province. ...

Contents

Waste management methods

Waste management methods vary widely between areas for many reasons, including type of waste material, nearby land uses, and the area available.


Disposal methods

Landfill

Main article: Landfill
Landfill operation in Hawaii.
Landfill operation in Hawaii.

Disposing of waste in a landfill involves burying waste to dispose of it, and this remains a common practice in most countries. Historically, landfills were often established in disused quarries, mining voids or borrow pits. A properly-designed and well-managed landfill can be a hygienic and relatively inexpensive method of disposing of waste materials. Older, poorly-designed or poorly-managed landfills can create a number of adverse environmental impacts such as wind-blown litter, attraction of vermin, and generation of liquid leachate. Another common byproduct of landfills is gas (mostly composed of methane and carbon dioxide), which is produced as organic waste breaks down anaerobically. This gas can create odor problems, kill surface vegetation, and is a greenhouse gas. Look up landfill in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Modern landfill operation at Waimanalo Gulch, the municipal sanitary landfill for the City & County of Honolulu; photographed on August 14, 2003 by Eric Guinther. ... Modern landfill operation at Waimanalo Gulch, the municipal sanitary landfill for the City & County of Honolulu; photographed on August 14, 2003 by Eric Guinther. ... For other uses, see Quarry (disambiguation). ... This article is about mineral extractions. ... A borrow pit is a term used in construction and civil engineering. ... The International Tidy Man For other meanings of litter, see Litter (disambiguation). ... Look up vermin in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Leachate is the liquid produced when water percolates through any permeable material. ... Methane is a chemical compound with the molecular formula . ... Carbon dioxide (chemical formula: ) is a chemical compound composed of two oxygen atoms covalently bonded to a single carbon atom. ... Anaerobic digestion component of Lübeck mechanical biological treatment plant in Germany, 2007 Anaerobic digestion is a process in which microorganisms break down biodegradable material in the absence of oxygen. ... Top: Increasing atmospheric levels as measured in the atmosphere and ice cores. ...

A landfill compaction vehicle in action.
A landfill compaction vehicle in action.

Design characteristics of a modern landfill include methods to contain leachate such as clay or plastic lining material. Deposited waste is normally compacted to increase its density and stability, and covered to prevent attracting vermin (such as mice or rats). Many landfills also have landfill gas extraction systems installed to extract the landfill gas. Gas is pumped out of the landfill using perforated pipes and flared off or burnt in a gas engine to generate electricity. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1280x853, 238 KB) Summary Picture of a landfill compactor in action at an Australian landfill site. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1280x853, 238 KB) Summary Picture of a landfill compactor in action at an Australian landfill site. ... Look up vermin in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Mice may refer to: An abbreviation of Meetings, Incentives, Conferencing, Exhibitions. ... This is an article about wild rats; for pet rats, see Fancy rat Species 50 species; see text *Several subfamilies of Muroids include animals called rats. ... Natural gas rig Natural gas (commonly refered to as gas in many countries) is a gaseous fossil fuel consisting primarily of methane. ... In the UK a Gas engine means an engine running on gas, such as coal gas or producer gas. ... Electricity (from New Latin Ä“lectricus, amberlike) is a general term for a variety of phenomena resulting from the presence and flow of electric charge. ...


Incineration

Main article: Incineration
Spittelau incineration plant in Vienna.
Spittelau incineration plant in Vienna.

Incineration is a disposal method that involves combustion of waste material. Incineration and other high temperature waste treatment systems are sometimes described as "thermal treatment". Incinerators convert waste materials into heat, gas, steam, and ash. For other forms of waste plant that produce energy see waste-to-energy. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 458 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (1300 × 1702 pixel, file size: 2. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 458 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (1300 × 1702 pixel, file size: 2. ... For other uses, see Vienna (disambiguation). ... This article is about the chemical reaction combustion. ... Thermal treatment is a term given to any waste treatment technology that involves high temperatures in the processing of the waste feedstock. ... For other uses, see Heat (disambiguation) In physics, heat, symbolized by Q, is energy transferred from one body or system to another due to a difference in temperature. ... For other uses, see Gas (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Steam (disambiguation). ... For other forms of waste plant that produce energy see waste-to-energy. ...


Incineration is carried out both on a small scale by individuals, and on a large scale by industry. It is used to dispose of solid, liquid and gaseous waste. It is recognized as a practical method of disposing of certain hazardous waste materials (such as biological medical waste). Incineration is a controversial method of waste disposal, due to issues such as emission of gaseous pollutants. This article describes hazardous waste as a substance; for the Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal see Basel Convention Put simply, a Hazardous waste is waste that poses substantial or potential threats to public health or the environment and generally exhibits one... Medical waste, also known as clinical waste, refers to biological products which are essentially useless. ... Pollutants are substances which directly or indirectly damage us or the environment. ...


Incineration is common in countries such as Japan where land is more scarce, as these facilities generally do not require as much area as landfills. Waste-to-energy (WtE) or energy-from-waste (EfW) are broad terms for facilities that burn waste in a furnace or boiler to generate heat, steam and/or electricity. Waste-to-energy (WtE) or energy-from-waste (EfW) in its strictest sense refers to any waste treatment that creates energy in the form of electricity or heat from a waste source that would have been disposed of in landfill, also called energy recovery. ...


Recycling methods

Main article: Recycling

The process of extracting resources or value from waste is generally referred to as recycling, meaning to recover or reuse the material. There are a number of different methods by which waste material is recycled: the raw materials may be extracted and reprocessed, or the calorific content of the waste may be converted to electricity. New methods of recycling are being developed continuously, and are described briefly below. The international recycling symbol. ...


Physical reprocessing

Steel scrap, sorted and baled for recycling.
Steel scrap, sorted and baled for recycling.

The popular meaning of ‘recycling’ in most developed countries refers to the widespread collection and reuse of everyday waste materials such as empty beverage containers. These are collected and sorted into common types so that the raw materials from which the items are made can be reprocessed into new products. Material for recycling may be collected separately from general waste using dedicated bins and collection vehicles, or sorted directly from mixed waste streams. Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (2288x1712, 813 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Recycling Metadata This file contains additional information, probably added from the digital camera or scanner used to create... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (2288x1712, 813 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Recycling Metadata This file contains additional information, probably added from the digital camera or scanner used to create...


The most common consumer products recycled include aluminum beverage cans, steel food and aerosol cans, HDPE and PET bottles, glass bottles and jars, paperboard cartons, newspapers, magazines, and cardboard. Other types of plastic (PVC, LDPE, PP, and PS: see resin identification code) are also recyclable, although these are not as commonly collected. These items are usually composed of a single type of material, making them relatively easy to recycle into new products. The recycling of complex products (such as computers and electronic equipment) is more difficult, due to the additional dismantling and separation required. Aluminum is a soft and lightweight metal with a dull silvery appearance, due to a thin layer of oxidation that forms quickly when it is exposed to air. ... For other uses, see Steel (disambiguation). ... Polyethylene or polyethene is one of the simplest and most inexpensive polymers. ... Recycling of PET Bottles is the activity whereby bottles made out of PET are collected, sorted and processed in order to reuse the material out of which they are made. ... This article is about the material. ... Reading the newspaper: Brookgreen Gardens in Pawleys Island, South Carolina. ... Cardboard is a generic non-specific term for a heavy duty paper based product. ... Polyvinyl chloride Polyvinyl chloride, (IUPAC Polychloroethene) commonly abbreviated PVC, is a widely used thermoplastic polymer. ... Polyethylene or polyethene is one of the simplest and most inexpensive polymers. ... Polypropylene lid of a Tic Tacs box, with a living hinge and the resin identification code under its flap Micrograph of polypropylene Polypropylene or polypropene (PP) is a thermoplastic polymer, made by the chemical industry and used in a wide variety of applications, including food packaging, ropes, textiles, stationery, plastic... For other uses, see Polystyrene (disambiguation). ... Sorted household plastic waiting to be hauled away for reprocessing. ...


Biological reprocessing

Main articles: Composting and Anaerobic digestion
An active compost heap.
An active compost heap.

Waste materials that are organic in nature, such as plant material, food scraps, and paper products, can be recycled using biological composting and digestion processes to decompose the organic matter. The resulting organic material is then recycled as mulch or compost for agricultural or landscaping purposes. In addition, waste gas from the process (such as methane) can be captured and used for generating electricity. The intention of biological processing in waste management is to control and accelerate the natural process of decomposition of organic matter. Composting is the aerobic decomposition of biodegradable organic matter, producing compost. ... Anaerobic digestion component of Lübeck mechanical biological treatment plant in Germany, 2007 Anaerobic digestion is a process in which microorganisms break down biodegradable material in the absence of oxygen. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1080x1284, 463 KB) Photograph © Andrew Dunn, 19 November 2005. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1080x1284, 463 KB) Photograph © Andrew Dunn, 19 November 2005. ... A handful of compost A double-wide bin with compost at different stages of decomposition Compost is the aerobically decomposed remnants of organic materials. ... Decomposition is the reduction of bodies and other formerly living organisms into simpler forms of matter; and most particularly to the fate of the body, after death. ... In agriculture and gardening, mulch is a protective cover placed over the soil, primarily to modify the effects of the local climate. ... A handful of compost A double-wide bin with compost at different stages of decomposition Compost is the aerobically decomposed remnants of organic materials. ...


There are a large variety of composting and digestion methods and technologies varying in complexity from simple home compost heaps, to industrial-scale enclosed-vessel digestion of mixed domestic waste (see Mechanical biological treatment). Methods of biological decomposition are differentiated as being aerobic or anaerobic methods, though hybrids of the two methods also exist. Anaerobic digestion and air processing components of Lübeck mechanical biological treatment plant in Germany A mechanical biological treatment system is a form of waste processing facility that combines a sorting facility with a form of biological treatment such as composting or anaerobic digestion. ... Look up Aerobic in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Anaerobic digestion component of Lübeck mechanical biological treatment plant in Germany, 2007 Anaerobic digestion is a process in which microorganisms break down biodegradable material in the absence of oxygen. ...


An example of waste management through composting is the Green Bin Program in Toronto, Canada, where household organic waste (such as kitchen scraps and plant cuttings) are collected in a dedicated container and then composted.


Energy recovery

Main article: Waste-to-energy
Anaerobic digestion component of Lübeck mechanical biological treatment plant in Germany, 2007
Anaerobic digestion component of Lübeck mechanical biological treatment plant in Germany, 2007

The energy content of waste products can be harnessed directly by using them as a direct combustion fuel, or indirectly by processing them into another type of fuel. Recycling through thermal treatment ranges from using waste as a fuel source for cooking or heating, to fuel for boilers to generate steam and electricity in a turbine. Pyrolysis and gasification are two related forms of thermal treatment where waste materials are heated to high temperatures with limited oxygen availability. The process typically occurs in a sealed vessel under high pressure. Pyrolysis of solid waste converts the material into solid, liquid and gas products. The liquid and gas can be burnt to produce energy or refined into other products. The solid residue (char) can be further refined into products such as activated carbon. Gasification is used to convert organic materials directly into a synthetic gas (syngas) composed of carbon monoxide and hydrogen. The gas is then burnt to produce electricity and steam. Waste-to-energy (WtE) or energy-from-waste (EfW) in its strictest sense refers to any waste treatment that creates energy in the form of electricity or heat from a waste source that would have been disposed of in landfill, also called energy recovery. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 402 pixelsFull resolution (1898 × 954 pixel, file size: 322 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Photograph of anaerobic digesters at the Lubeck Waste Treatment Facility a mechanical biological treatment plant. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 402 pixelsFull resolution (1898 × 954 pixel, file size: 322 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Photograph of anaerobic digesters at the Lubeck Waste Treatment Facility a mechanical biological treatment plant. ... Anaerobic digestion and air filtration components of the plant The Lübeck Waste Treatment Facility is a mechanical biological treatment plant located near the city of Lübeck in Germany. ... Anaerobic digestion and air processing components of Lübeck mechanical biological treatment plant in Germany A mechanical biological treatment system is a form of waste processing facility that combines a sorting facility with a form of biological treatment such as composting or anaerobic digestion. ... A boiler is a closed vessel in which water or other fluid is heated under pressure. ... A Siemens steam turbine with the case opened. ... Simple sketch of pyrolysis chemistry Pyrolysis usually means the chemical decomposition of organic materials by heating in the absence of oxygen or any other reagents, except possibly steam. ... For the water carbonator, see Gasogene. ... This article is about the chemical element and its most stable form, or dioxygen. ... This article is about pressure in the physical sciences. ... Activated carbon Activated carbon, also called activated charcoal or activated coal, is a general term which covers carbon material mostly derived from charcoal. ... It has been suggested that Town gas be merged into this article or section. ... Carbon monoxide, with the chemical formula CO, is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas. ... This article is about the chemistry of hydrogen. ... For other uses, see Steam (disambiguation). ...


Avoidance and reduction methods

Main article: Waste minimization

An important method of waste management is the prevention of waste material being created, also known as waste reduction. Methods of avoidance include reuse of second-hand products, repairing broken items instead of buying new, designing products to be refillable or reusable (such as cotton instead of plastic shopping bags), encouraging consumers to avoid using disposable products (such as disposable cutlery), and designing products that use less material to achieve the same purpose (for example, lightweighting of beverage cans). This article or section is not written in the formal tone expected of an encyclopedia article. ... Cutlery refers to any hand implement used in preparing, serving, and especially eating food in the Western world. ...


Waste handling and transport

A typical front loading garbage truck in North America.
A typical front loading garbage truck in North America.

Waste collection methods vary widely between different countries and regions. Domestic waste collection services are often provided by local government authorities, or by private industry. Some areas, especially those in less developed countries, do not have a formal waste-collection system. Examples of waste handling systems include: Scania front loader WCV A waste collection vehicle (WCV)/ refuse collection vehicle (RCV), garbage truck (in North America), rubbish truck (in Australia), or dustcart, or sometimes dustbin wagon (in Britain and other Commonwealth countries), is a truck specially designed to pick up smaller quantities of waste and haul it to... A dustbin is a container used to store refuse which can be made out of metal or plastic¹. Other names include trash can, garbage can and trash bin. ... North American redirects here. ...

  • In Australia, most urban domestic households have a 240-litre (63.4 U.S. gallon) bin that is emptied weekly from the curb using side- or rear-loading compactor trucks.
  • In Europe and a few other places around the world, a few communities use a proprietary collection system known as Envac, which conveys refuse via underground conduits using a vacuum system.
  • In Canadian urban centres curbside collection is the most common method of disposal, whereby the city collects waste and/or recyclables and/or organics on a scheduled basis. In rural areas people often dispose of their waste by hauling it to a transfer station. Waste collected is then transported to a regional landfill.

For other uses, see Europe (disambiguation). ... Main articles: History of Canada, Timeline of Canadian history Canada has been inhabited by aboriginal peoples (known in Canada as First Nations) for at least 40,000 years. ... Kerbside collection (curbside collection US) is the strategy of local authorities to collect recyclable resources from the household alongside normal mixed waste collections. ...

Waste management concepts

There are a number of concepts about waste management which vary in their usage between countries or regions. Some of the most general, widely-used concepts include: The following page contains a list of different waste management related concepts and acronyms: BANANA Build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Near Anything Best practicable environmental option (BPEO) Extended producer responsibility Linguistic detoxification NIMBY Not in my back yard Pay as you throw Polluter pays principle Proximity principle Waste strategy Waste hierarchy...

Diagram of the waste hierarchy.
Diagram of the waste hierarchy.
  • Waste hierarchy - the waste hierarchy refers to the "3 Rs" reduce, reuse and recycle, which classify waste management strategies according to their desirability in terms of waste minimization. The waste hierarchy remains the cornerstone of most waste minimization strategies. The aim of the waste hierarchy is to extract the maximum practical benefits from products and to generate the minimum amount of waste.
  • Extended producer responsibility - Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) is a strategy designed to promote the integration of all costs associated with products throughout their life cycle (including end-of-life disposal costs) into the market price of the product. Extended producer responsibility is meant to impose accountability over the entire lifecycle of products and packaging introduced to the market. This means that firms which manufacture, import and/or sell products are required to be responsible for the products after their useful life as well as during manufacture.
  • Polluter pays principle - the Polluter Pays Principle is a principle where the polluting party pays for the impact caused to the natural environment. With respect to waste management, this generally refers to the requirement for a waste generator to pay for appropriate disposal of the waste.

The waste hierarchy The waste hierarchy refers to the 3 Rs reduce, reuse and recycle, which classify waste management strategies according to their desirability. ... This article or section is not written in the formal tone expected of an encyclopedia article. ... Reuse is using an item more than once. ... The international recycling symbol. ... This article or section is not written in the formal tone expected of an encyclopedia article. ... Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) is a strategy designed to promote the integration of environmental costs associated with products throughout their life cycles into the market price of the products (OECD 1999). ... It has been suggested that Polluter Pays be merged into this article or section. ...

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
Waste
  • Waste = Food Documentary - An inspiring documentary on the Cradle to Cradle design concept of Michael Braungart and William McDonough.
  • "American dumpster: Builders deep-six too much material"
  • Analysis of existing methods for refuse processing
Anaerobic digestion component of Lübeck mechanical biological treatment plant in Germany, 2007 Anaerobic digestion is a process in which microorganisms break down biodegradable material in the absence of oxygen. ... Composting is the aerobic decomposition of biodegradable organic matter, producing compost. ... An eco-industrial park is a type of industrial park in which businesses cooperate with each other and with the local community in an attempt to reduce waste, efficiently share resources (such as information, materials, water, energy, infrastructure, and natural resources), and produce sustainable development, with the intention of increasing... For other forms of waste plant that produce energy see waste-to-energy. ... Look up landfill in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Anaerobic digestion and air processing components of Lübeck mechanical biological treatment plant in Germany A mechanical biological treatment system is a form of waste processing facility that combines a sorting facility with a form of biological treatment such as composting or anaerobic digestion. ... Radioactive wastes are waste types containing radioactive chemical elements that do not have a practical purpose. ... Reuse is using an item more than once. ... The international recycling symbol. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Reuse. ... The word sewerage means the provision of pipes etc to collect and dispose of sewage. ... For other uses, see Waste (disambiguation). ... For the corporation, see Waste Management Incorporated Waste management is the collection, transport, processing or disposal of waste materials, usually ones produced by human activity, in an effort to reduce their effect on human health or local amenity. ... Waste sorting is the process by which waste is separated into different elements. ... The waste hierarchy The waste hierarchy refers to the 3 Rs reduce, reuse and recycle, which classify waste management strategies according to their desirability. ... The following page contains a list of different waste management related concepts and acronyms: BANANA Build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Near Anything Best practicable environmental option (BPEO) Extended producer responsibility Linguistic detoxification NIMBY Not in my back yard Pay as you throw Polluter pays principle Proximity principle Waste strategy Waste hierarchy... Depending upon the country different legislation governs the way waste is managed and disposed of. ... Waste treatment refers to the activities required to ensure that waste has the least practicable impact on the environment. ...

  Results from FactBites:
 
Waste management - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (2686 words)
Waste management is the collection, transport, processing or disposal of waste materials, usually ones produced by human activity, in an effort to reduce their effect on human health or local aesthetics or amenity.
Waste management practices differ for developed and developing nations, for urban and rural areas, and for residential, industrial, and commercial producers.
Waste management for non-hazardous residential and institutional waste in metropolitan areas is usually the responsibility of local government authorities, while management for non-hazardous commercial and industrial waste is usually the responsibility of the generator.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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