Landfill

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In the world we live in today we are producing more and more waste and it has come to appoint where we must find the best method of disposing it. There are many methods currently being used such as incinerating our waste, recycling it or simply storing and piling it up, what we need to identify is the best method of disposing waste. One method of disposing waste is through landfills. A landfill is a site for disposing waste materials by burials. This is the oldest method of disposing waste. It is used a lot in many countries as temporary storage, consolidation and transfer. We can categorize landfill sites into hazardous waste landfills and non-hazardous waste landfills.

In non-hazardous waste landfills there are a few specifications applied by which the wastes are: confined to as small an area as possible, compacted to reduce their volume, covered (daily) with layers of soil, include a composite liner, include a leachate collection and removal system and monitor groundwater. Each landfill is designed to handle particular waste streams such as: hazardous waste and

municipal solid waste will be
separated. The landfill is
permitted or licensed for
particular kinds of waste and
therefore cannot accept all
waste. Household hazardous
waste
such
as:
paints,
cleaners/chemicals, motor oil,
batteries and pesticides are a
few common examples.

Landfills are mainly filled with
paper, then yard waste, then
plastic and everything else.
Burying waste in landfill sites
such as quarries and mines or
specially excavated sites is a
safer form This is a non-hazardous a site. piling up waste onto vacant land. Landfill waste is of disposal of waste than just
normally compacted with bulldozers and covered with soil at the end of each day. The covering Chavez, Erika. Frank R. Bowerman Landfill. 2010. Photograph. Bee Canyon Road and of waste with soil prevents pests such as Register. 7 Jan. 2010. Portola Parkway on Irvine’s Northern Border. Orange Countyflies and rats, which spread disease, scavenging the Web. waste2013. . limit it is covered with more soil and left to 5 Apr. for scraps. Once the site has reached its

decompose over time. These sites can then be landscaped to provide recreation facilities, such as golf courses, or low-cost building land for industry and retail estate.

The hazardous landfill site does not follow the specifications of non-hazardous waste landfills. In a hazardous landfill site the burial process is not undergone properly and therefore the large quantities of methane (CH4) gas do not undergo proper control. The proper method of controlling the methane would be to collect and burn it as fuel to generate electricity. Instead it catches fire and causes explosions and the destruction of sites around it. We must remember that bacteria in the landfills break down the waste in the absence of oxygen (anaerobic) because the landfill is airtight, this produces: 50 % methane and 50% carbon dioxide and small amounts of nitrogen and oxygen. This gas is a major greenhouse gas causing global warming and highly explosive, which is why its control in landfills is vital.

Devika Nair 11b

Another disadvantage is the formation of leachate, which is the mixture of chemicals and heavy metals dissolved in rainwater. Leachate leaks into local water and soils, which is extremely dangerous since this substance is toxic and a carcinogen. To prevent the leakage of leachate special linings are put around modern landfill sites. Another solution is limiting the disposal of hazardous waste in landfills. Even if these measures are taken to control leachate, damage can still be caused, due to the chemicals present. There are a variety of dangerous incidents that way occur due to landfills such as: explosive attacks, radiological attacks, biological attacks, foreign animal diseases, chemical attacks and natural disasters.

Although landfills do have its cons, when hazardous there are many benefits to non- hazardous...
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