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Questions tagged [waste]

Materials, which the initial user wants to dispose. "The term can be described as subjective and inaccurate because waste to one person is not waste to another".

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3answers
85 views

Is it better to put something potentially unrecyclable in the recycling bin or to put something recyclable in the waste bin?

This may sound like a weird question, but the other night I was about to throw away a plastic package which didn't have any recycling information on it, and I hesitated before throwing it in the waste ...
8
votes
3answers
75 views

How can ceramics be recycled?

How can ceramics be recycled? Does the answer vary greatly depending on glaze or other factors, and if so, how can those factors be determined (i.e. how can I tell if a glaze contains lead or not)? ...
4
votes
1answer
31 views

What can be used to power an incinerator that produces electricity?

What can and cannot be sent to an incinerator plant (Virginia) for producing electricity from heat? Can there be anything other than plastics, metals, and paper products in the bin?
5
votes
1answer
106 views

Why do island nations generate so much garbage?

THelper's excellent answer to the question "What is current best practice for setting up recycling?" includes a chart showing that New Zealand sends nearly 100% of its garbage to landfills. In a ...
3
votes
1answer
62 views

How do I setup a relevant waste biodegradation experiment?

Every here and there I hear sayings like "plastic is bad, because it only degrades in hundreds/thousands/gazillion years, while paper is much better because it degrades fast" which are followed by ...
3
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2answers
99 views

How do I get rid of numerous small pieces of charcoal?

There's a small piece of land used for burning tree branches on bonfire (because that's the easiest way to get rid of them). Most of the material gets burnt to ashes but some of it only turns into ...
0
votes
1answer
57 views

Will garden giant mushrooms survive in a normal septic tank?

I've heard that garden giant mushrooms will breakdown fecal matter, and was wondering if it would be a good idea to put some inside the septic tank to have it break down fecal matter to make it less ...
5
votes
1answer
42 views

What are the Energy Return on Investment (EROI) values like for biogas?

Biogas seems to be a really great idea but I'm wondering how much energy you get out vs. what you need to put in. I know natural gas is around 10.0 and I was wondering how biogas stacks up by this ...
3
votes
4answers
128 views

What isn't recyclable or compostable?

My community has single-bin recycling. Most consumer-level metal, plastic, and paper can go in there to be sorted at a recycling center. They don't take plastic grocery bags, cellophane, paper towels, ...
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2answers
41 views

Dealing with waste in countries without waste management infrastructure

In previously sustainable countries, westernization brings unmanageable waste: We get flooded with plastic but don't even have garbage collection. Apparently the result is that 40% of the world's ...
3
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0answers
52 views

Is there any useful recycling of fibreglass boats or other products made of it?

Lifetime is running out for a large number of fibreglass boats produced about 50 years ago. Many shipyards where they have been produced do no longer exist and last users frequently do not have the ...
14
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2answers
94 views

Does transporting plastic offset the benefits of recycling it?

Apparently China has been processing about half the world's waste until this year, and most of that waste is transported over the ocean in large container ships. Recycling plastic uses less energy and ...
6
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2answers
229 views

What are the consequences of wasting water in a water-rich country?

I live in Hungary where everyone has access to loads of clean water. Still, common knowledge says that one shouldn't waste water. Apart from the economic factors, like cleaning the water, why ...
6
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2answers
99 views

Is flushing dog faeces down the lavatory better than bagging and binning them?

I have taken to collecting our dog’s fæces in lavatory paper and flushing them rather than using the little plastic bags one can buy for the purpose and putting those in the (non-recycling) rubbish ...
11
votes
2answers
122 views

How do plastic bags and other waste end up in the ocean?

There are many photos of the ocean, which in some parts is littered with all sorts of waste, often plastic bags, containers etc. I just wonder - how do such large amounts of plastic land in the ocean/...
3
votes
1answer
197 views

Recycling soda stream cannisters in Australia?

My wife and I have a bunch of random broken things from our previous lives that we're trying to get rid of correctly. One of them is a few left over soda stream canisters. Many recycling centers in ...
12
votes
1answer
72 views

Is using a menstrual cup better for the environment than using pads or tampons?

Menstrual cups can last between 5 to 10 years depending on the brand and care in use. There are many different brands and designs. E.g. Diva cups only last about the average of 5 years, while Mooncup ...
3
votes
1answer
81 views

How can we all together clean up the vast plastic carpets in our oceans? [closed]

It is mind-boggling to me that there is still so much plastic out in our oceans, floating around for years and ever growing and nothing is being done about it. Governments should work together, ...
1
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0answers
65 views

When should I get rid of a product and buy a new more efficient/useful version? [duplicate]

When should I get rid of a product and buy a new more efficient/useful version? The existing product works okay for its primary use case so I don't want to throw it away or recycle it and then spend ...
5
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0answers
86 views

Research on consumer behavior and waste management

I am teaching a class on waste management to students who are primarily environmental management masters students. For one of the sessions I plan to discuss the role of consumer/waste generator ...
7
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1answer
104 views

What is this candy wrapper made of? Solely plastic or mixed with something else?

I am an avid recycler - whenever I get the chance to recycle, I do it. The only problem is, I can't mix materials when recycling. I want to recycle the following: It's wrapping for candy - in this ...
6
votes
5answers
146 views

How to sustainably dispose of or break down used cooking oils?

I have recently wondered what I should be doing with my used kitchen oils having seen a news article about an enormous fatberg clogging the sewer in London. Obviously putting it down the sink really ...
10
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2answers
159 views

Can solid dog waste be safely added to a backyard composting heap?

My dog poops in my backyard and the poop is either a) forgotten or b) picked up in a biodegradable bag and thrown in the trash which is ultimately incinerated for electricity by my municipality. Both ...
5
votes
2answers
162 views

What the best plant to grow on human waste and fix CO2?

My goal is to convert human waste into (less disgusting and more useful) plant mass while decreasing CO2 (for the sake of it) and I want to find seriously the most proper plant for that (I would think ...
11
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4answers
5k views

Are used “blister packs” recyclable?

Now, in management of recurring everyday waste, this is something totally unavoidable. Are tablet strips (what they call blister pack strips), after use, recyclable? Can they be dumped with dry ...
6
votes
2answers
196 views

Is there any eco-friendly option for condom?

I am from India and there is no availability of vegan condom. I am a hardcore practitioner of sustainable living and don't wanted to create waste with single-use condom which is definitely resulting ...
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2answers
239 views

In search for a video on removing trash cans from the office

I recently saw a video (almost certain it was on youtube) about a university department where they had installed some measures to improve their waste management. One of the measures was to no longer ...
8
votes
1answer
189 views

Sustainability of waste incineration vs biofuel/biogas?

Should I encourage my neighbors to send their food waste to a biogas plant instead of the current incineration facility? I have Googled around and it does not seem like it is clear that it is better ...
8
votes
3answers
116 views

Is it better to dispose of food scraps with a garbage disposal unit or into the garbage?

Obviously it is best to compost food scraps, but that is not always an option. A recent ABC news article claimed that food scraps were contributing to 'fatbergs' in Brisbane's sewage system. I've ...
6
votes
1answer
75 views

Is there any harm in not sorting biowaste?

I mix biowaste with mixed waste (ends up to a landfill). In my household the amount of produced biowaste is minimal, mostly consisting of leftover pasta and fruit & vegetable peels. Will I cause ...
0
votes
4answers
254 views

Using other peoples resources for basic living

For at least a few weeks, I've been living using others resources. I do not own a cellphone and have no expenses except my car insurance. I'm currently using my car for sleep and transportation. For ...
7
votes
1answer
635 views

How recyclable is a sealable coffee bag?

I am aware of a few ways to "upcycle" a sealable coffee (ground or whole beans) bag (see photo), but how recyclable is it? I am sure it depends a lot on where I live, but I was wondering if you knew ...
12
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4answers
1k views

What is the most sustainable way of making coffee?

Which method of brewing coffee is the most sustainable? The criteria being: minimal waste, minimal energy (no matter where it's produced) I guess for the optimal solution it would be necessary to......
8
votes
5answers
5k views

Alternatives to garbage plastic bags

I currently use plastic garbage bags in the kitchen. I would like (if possible) to use something plastic free, as hygienic as the usual plastic bag and easily obtainable in Europe. Is there any ...
8
votes
1answer
156 views

Scrapping a mouse - what should I focus on?

First of all, I would truly appreciate your help since I'm still a rookie when it comes to scrapping. I stumble upon e-waste quite often which is the prime reason why have I decided to become a ...
1
vote
1answer
115 views

What is the most valuable “thing” I should focus on when scrapping electronics? [closed]

Since I'm still getting to know the world of sustainable living, recycling, scrapping, and everything related to that - I would be very grateful if someone gave me a few pieces of advice. I would ...
6
votes
2answers
163 views

What should I do with my old smart phone?

What are the recycling methods applicable for a smart phone? People often change smart phones and the number of unused phones have become a problem for the environment. I came to know about some ...
13
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1answer
72 views

Co-firing fossil fuels use in waste incineration

I know from shop talk among previous colleagues that waste incinerators often need natural gas to sustain firing. AFAIK this is mostly because mixed household wastes have a high moisture content, ...
3
votes
1answer
185 views

Is garbage separation beneficial, if yes, how beneficial is it?

I would have a question. I lived till now in a number of Eastern and Western European countries. With time I saw that the states/cities in which I lived made provisions (most recently in Poland-Warsaw)...
4
votes
2answers
176 views

Are there any self sustainable sanitation solutions for remote and underdeveloped areas?

My organization wants to install toilets and some kind of recycling method in remote underdeveloped areas. The installments should be suitable for hilly and mountainous terrain. Since the area we ...
26
votes
7answers
16k views

What to do with old, unused incandescent light bulbs

Over the years, my family has built up a small stockpile of incandescent light bulbs. More recently, we have been replacing our incandescent lights with more energy-efficient alternatives. ...
3
votes
0answers
59 views

Relationship between number of public rubbish bins and MSW(municipal Solid Waste) among countries and areas

Is there any research really about the relationship between the number of public rubbish bins and MSW? Any studies about it? Do municipalities with less public rubbish bins tend to produce less MSW? ...
14
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3answers
10k views

How to properly dispose of bubble wrap envelopes?

In those envelopes paper is often glued pretty well to bubble wrap portion, making it hard to separate. On top of that bubble wrap itself is seldom recycled - for example in my area of Ontario, Canada ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

When are manufacturers required to mark products and packaging with recycling codes?

I just purchased a consumer product. It was packaged in a clear plastic 'disposable' container. This shipping container is not marked in any way. There is no material designation or recycling code ...
12
votes
2answers
180 views

What's the most sustainable way of disposing with a used battery?

We are advised by our various governments that the most environmentally-friendly way to dispose of a battery is to give it in to a designated battery recycling plant. But could the process of doing ...
11
votes
2answers
494 views

Which funeral methods are more sustainable than burial or cremation?

All living things die. I will die. What are some sustainable options for handling dead bodies?
7
votes
1answer
198 views

How can I clean old cooking oil for use in candles?

I have a tupperware of old cooking oil in the fridge that I've been debating throwing away - but I would rather re-use it than just toss it. Can I render it and make it into jar candles? It's ...
6
votes
1answer
175 views

More uses for bacon grease

We (my family) consume good amounts of bacon which produce a lot of bacon grease. I don't like wasting anything that I could reuse or repurpose, including this. I use this byproduct in many different ...
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5answers
3k views

Is it a good idea to throw organic waste in a river?

I live in an apartment in an urban area that doesn't offer municipal compost. I store my food waste in a paper bag in my freezer. When the bag is full, I run it over to Whole Foods and dispose of ...
7
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4answers
235 views

Any food and grocery buying systems that lead to less food waste?

I am not asking for specific diets or reducing plastic waste. Many people may not want to change their diets. How do people buy food so that they throw away as little food as possible? There must be ...