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landfill waste

Have a sense of environmental responsibility? Then landfills are one way you can act on it. There is no denying the importance of landfills when it comes to rubbish and waste. Here are 6 landfill waste compaction strategies you should know:

  • No Compaction Strategy

Non-compaction of waste can make financial sense even if it is harmful to the environment. Any remaining landfills whose expansions have been made according to the old rules don’t have to face the direct capital costs of construction. Landfills that are located in remote areas do not have to contend with competition are less concerned with minimizing airspace. Most third world countries don’t compress as a lot of poverty stricken people make their livings picking through the waste to salvage whatever. Compacting would actually hinder salvaging.

The waste itself will go through natural volume reduction over time if left alone without any actual compaction as decomposition will occur to a certain extent.

Landfill gas drillers tend to excavate readable newspapers and recognizable food items that date back a few decades. Enough decomposition occurs over time that differential settlement happens.

  • Use Trash Compactors to Compact Landfill Waste

Most landfills tend to compact their waste in-place themselves or due to government regulations. These trash compactors are specialized earth movers which have been modified to achieve the highest possible in-place compaction by mobile equipment operating on municipal solid waste.

The act of compacting waste should be viewed as a construction effort and the goal of this effort is to construct the highest-density cell volume in the safest possible manner.

The main reason that a business will invest in a waste compactor is for the purpose of volume reduction, which means less waste hauling service requirements.

  • Five Business Benefits of Baling Waste

Bales are machines that take in waste, compact it to a high density and bundle it with wire so it holds its shape, though some waste balers rely on the post compaction adhesion of the waste to hold the bale’s shape. The waste bales can then be stacked like blocks or laid like bricks.

So why bale instead of compacting it with standard waste compaction equipment?

  1. Baling gives a much higher density, reducing the volume by a third. Bales also have better internal strength characteristics and are better able to handle slope failure than compacted waste. Stable bale slope tend to be steeper than compacted waste slopes.
  2. Baling requires less landfill volume and footprint.
  3. Baling requires a significant up-front capital cost. It is very expensive to own and operate a baling machine as compared to operating and maintaining a fleet of standard compacting equipment.
  4. Baler operations are difficult in cold temperatures.
  5. Operating a baler requires specialized training and safety Balers are susceptible to a lot of wear and tear.
  • Dynamic Compaction

This is an extreme method of compacting refuse and waste fill. This technique involves dropping heavy waste of 15-20 tons onto the surface of the fill from a height of 30 to 60 feet on a grid pattern whose spacing is determined by the weight being dropped and the nature of the waste. Dynamic compaction isn’t just used to minimize airspace. The high densities achieved by this method create very stable foundations for construction.

  • Shredders

Shredders have always been used to break large objects such as white goods (home appliances), brown goods (furniture), trunk and tires into smaller pieces just before dumping it in the landfill. Shredders are also useful for creating fluff at transfer stations which can much more easily be transported to the landfill site. Shredders have also been used to prepare waste for use as refuse derived fuel in waste to energy plants.

Shredded material is much better handled, spread and compacted than whole goods being fed into the shredders.

  • Landfill Mining

Landfill mining removes and reclaims primarily inorganic materials that have a market value that justifies the expense of the mining operation as well as freeing up more space.

The primary goal of landfill mining is the extraction of valuable metals, though other recyclable, combustible materials can be sold or excavated for reuse. Metals typically make up 8% of the waste stream with plastics accounting for 11%.

Landfill mining is not cheap nor is it easy but it can be very messy and can damage the structural integrity of the landfill’s structural elements.

Only very high costs of scrap metal and real estate justify the expense and trouble inherent in landfill mining.

Reduce, Re-Use and Recycle

Other than recovering materials from landfills, the other important benefits of metal recycling versus the creation of virgin metal includes a reduction in energy consumption as well as in the use of other materials. An example of this can be seen with recycled aluminum which needs 95% less energy than, while copper requires 90% less and steel 56%. Reducing, re-using and recycling is important, become a part of the solution and start implementing these landfill waste strategies with us at Norcal Compactors today!