The Landfill Predicament

For as long as human beings have been creating waste, there has been the need to remove it and store it away. As a result, landfills and dumps became an integral, logical and for a time, the most economical solution to our waste management needs - despite their detrimental impact on the environment.

Luckily, we’re living in a time where the world is becoming more and more aware of the waste we are producing, and we are actively seeking more sustainable solutions to deal with it. As we see these changes progress further, the need to phase out old, antiquated processes will be unavoidable because newer and better solutions will be available. Yet, how do we begin that process when landfills are such a deeply engrained part of the world’s waste management?

There is no one easy answer or quick fix. It will be a long time before landfills become a thing of the past, but we’re taking the steps in the right direction to reach that goal. For example, the American Environmental Protection Agency recently proposed more stringent updates to its 1996 Emission Guidelines for existing, new and modified municipal solid waste landfills because of the significant changes that have occurred in the landfill industry and the better understanding of the gas emissions landfills emit.

Similarly, recycling, upcycling, composting and green waste management technology like the ORCA are helping to usher in a more sustainable way of dealing with our waste.

We all need to be more accountable and aware of the waste we produce, making more conscious decisions about what we buy and throw away. It all starts with educating ourselves and making the right decisions that are not only beneficial to ourselves, but to future generations as well. We’ll get there; it’s just going to take time.


Shawn Dym