Examining MSW

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A look at waste generation and collection in Mecklenburg County (NC) and the USA in 2009.

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Examining MSW

  1. 1. Wasting Resources: Examining Our MSW Selected U.S. and CharMeck Data from 1997-2009 Derrick Willard Providence Day School
  2. 2. From Miller, WWE 10th ed., Figure 15-2 (pg. 348). U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Bureau of Mines Sources of 12 Billion Tons of U.S. Solid Wastes Each Year… *Note MSW is low! Municipal 1.5% Sewage sludge 1% Mining and oil and gas production 75% Industry 9.5% Agriculture 13%
  3. 3. What material dominates our MSW waste stream in the USA? http://www.epa.gov/osw/nonhaz/municipal/
  4. 4. Contact the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) . DMA is the oldest and largest trade association for the users and suppliers in the direct, database and interactive marketing field. You can use the DMA website to request their no cost Mail Preference Service (MPS). With DMA's MPS you can remove your name from DMA member prospect lists. Please note that signing up with MPS may prevent you from receiving mail you want, such as new catalogs, coupons, announcements about new businesses in your community, and notices of special offers. But, this can significantly reduce your “junk mail” load (at least 75%). If you want to REDUCE your paper MSW, here is an easy first step: https:// www.dmachoice.org/dma/member/regist.action
  5. 5. Source: State of the Environment Report, 1997, Mecklenburg County, North Carolina Mecklenburg County (last available)
  6. 6. http://www.epa.gov/osw/nonhaz/municipal/ US Total & Per Capita Production
  7. 7. Source: State of the Environment Report, 1997, Mecklenburg County, North Carolina Mecklenburg County Per Capita Production (last available)
  8. 8. What does the US currently do with MSW? Source: EPA Office of Solid Waste, Municipal Solid Waste Generation, Recycling and Disposal Facts and Figures 2009 http://www.epa.gov/osw/nonhaz/municipal/pubs/msw2009-fs.pdf Landfill (bury) Recycle or Compost Incinerate (burn)
  9. 9. <ul><li>Recycling has been on the rise since the 1980’s…why? </li></ul>http://www.epa.gov/osw/nonhaz/municipal/
  10. 10. We do have many programs for our country in place today…
  11. 11. We do have many programs for CharMeck in place today…
  12. 12. Source: State of the Environment Report, 1997, Mecklenburg County, North Carolina But most (54%) of our MSW still goes to landfills…
  13. 13. Modern Sanitary Landfill
  14. 14. Eventually these have to be closed…
  15. 15. Source: State of the Environment Report, 1997, Mecklenburg County, North Carolina
  16. 16. What do we (USA) recycle? <ul><li>35% of total MSW is biodegradable and possible to compost, but only 5% is composted </li></ul><ul><li>41% of wastepaper & cardboard </li></ul><ul><li>5% of plastics by total weight </li></ul><ul><li>50% of aluminum cans </li></ul><ul><li>65% of steel </li></ul><ul><li>31% of glass containers </li></ul>Source: Miller ESPCS text, 12th ed. and EPA
  17. 17. Why would recycling rates vary so much by material? http://www.epa.gov/osw/nonhaz/municipal/
  18. 18. What can and can’t go in CharMeck new green bins… http://charmeck.org/city/charlotte/SWS/CurbIt/Recycling/Pages/Home.aspx
  19. 19. Why Don’t We Recycle More? <ul><li>Environmental costs are not passed on to consumers in market prices (cheap goods) </li></ul><ul><li>Most government subsidies are for those extracting virgin materials </li></ul><ul><li>Fees/charges for dumping in landfills are low </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of large, steady markets for all recycled materials (varies by material) </li></ul><ul><li>Source separation inconvenient? </li></ul>
  20. 20. Solutions? <ul><li>Taxing virgin resource extraction and ending mining subsidies? </li></ul><ul><li>“ Pay-as-you-throw” systems? </li></ul><ul><li>Requiring government funded agencies to increase demand and lower prices by purchasing more recyclables? </li></ul><ul><li>Pass “take-back” (cradle-to-grave) laws for manufacturing (like some European nations)? </li></ul><ul><li>Labeling of postconsumer vs. preconsumer recycled content? </li></ul>
  21. 21. Source: State of the Environment Report, 1997, Mecklenburg County, North Carolina Next: What do with do with the really “bad” stuff?

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