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Dumps, Landfills, and Modern Landfills

Describe an open dump. Explain the environmental problems.

Describe an early landfill. What are the problems associated with early landfills? Include a discussion of leachate, methane, incomplete decomposition and settling.

Describe a modern landfill. What are the differences as compared to early landfills? What improvements have been made?

Choose one of these landfills and explain the innovations being implemented to make the landfill more productive and to reduce its environmental impact:

o Mariannhill Landfill, South Africa
o Puente Hills, California
o Altamont Landfill, CA
o Tessman Road Landfill, TX

Solution Preview

Describe an open dump. Explain the environmental problems.

An open dump is an unlicensed location where solid waste is put. The US Environmental protection agency defines solid waste as; "solid waste includes but is not limited to trash, yard waste, used motor oil, household chemicals, building materials, and demolition materials. Solid waste does not include rock, dirt, or brick."

There are environmental problems with open dumps. Hazardous chemicals and pollutants found in open dumps can seep into the ground water. Pollutants can be washed into rivers and creeks used as a water source for wildlife and eventually for humans. Another problem with open dumps is they are aesthetically unpleasing, which can affect land value and tourism.

Describe an early landfill. What are the problems associated with early landfills? Include a discussion of leachate, methane, incomplete decomposition and settling.

Early landfills operated on the bases of out of sight out of mind. The site was often on convenient and inexpensive land. There were no restrictions addressing quantity, type, or chemical make-up of the waste. These negates created problems in three main areas; toxins, ...

Solution Summary

Descriptions of an open dump, early landfill and modern landfill. Explanations are discussed of various environmental problems associated with each. Detailed discussion is presented on environmental problems associated with leachate, methane, incomplete decomposition and settling. Tessman Road Landfill, TX is choosen to describe landfill improvements and explain the innovations being implemented to make the landfill more productive and to reduce its environmental impact.

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