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SCIE210 U4 IP: Municipal Solid Waste - Research Paper Example

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An open dump is a deserted heap of household garbage, appliances, yard waste, used tyres, old tins and barrels, asbestos and pipes that can be a threat to the health of human beings, animals and the environment. This is considered an illegal dump site.
An open dump looks bad,…
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SCIE210 U4 IP: Municipal Solid Waste
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Download file to see previous pages A land fill can be described as an area or a site that is excavated to specifically receive wastes. The early landfills of the 1960s were not suitable as half of the waste could not decompose and they were therefore, usually, quickly overfilled. Because of this, the waste leaked out into the atmosphere and the surrounding water bodies.
As pollutants that dissolve in the rainwater that runs through the landfill, leachate pollutes underground water since water that percolates through the waste picks up paints, pesticides, heavy metal, cleaning liquids, acids and other soluble substances (Di et al., 2012). The buried waste lacks oxygen, thus it decomposes without oxygen, to produce methane, carbon dioxide and hydrogen. This mixture is flammable and it leaks into the ground. This gas can explode when ignited. There are also materials such as plastics which do not decompose completely. However, there have been efforts to produce biodegradable plastics. Biodegradation is the total breakdown of carbon compounds into water and carbon dioxide. Plastics that are biodegradable are changed to a fine powder. Moreover, landfill archaeologists have found newspapers as old as 30 years or more, which are readable. Because wood and newspapers are made of organic molecules, they were initially believed that they were biodegradable. However, 40 percent of the MSW is made up of paper products and cannot be decomposed because of lack of water and oxygen in the landfill. There is also the issue of setting. With time, the decomposition of MSW results into settings and thus, buildings are not located over the landfills.
A modern landfill is large area of an excavated site that is designed specifically for wastes. Currently over 56% of the trash is disposed in the landfills. Modern solid landfills take in different types of hazardous waste, like paint, cleaning ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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