Stack Exchange Network

Stack Exchange network consists of 175 Q&A communities including Stack Overflow, the largest, most trusted online community for developers to learn, share their knowledge, and build their careers.

Visit Stack Exchange

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".

16
votes
4answers
2k views

What is the most sustainable way to handle food waste…throwing food scraps into garbage or down my sink's garbage disposal?

Every night when I wash dishes, I either throw food scraps down the garbage disposal or throw it in the trash. Is it more sustainable to throw food scraps down the garbage disposal? I think things ...
8
votes
4answers
251 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 ...
2
votes
2answers
30 views

What's the best way to dispose of scrap lumber?

I recently purchased a home in Wisconsin, USA, and in the process of making repairs and upgrades I find I'm generating a fair amount of scrap lumber each month. I keep whatever I think I'll be able to ...
15
votes
1answer
133 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
95 views

How many times do you need to re-use cloth napkins to offset their impact?

My local municipality has a "Waste Watchers" program that provides resources for reducing the quantity of waste sent to landfills. One of their tips is to use cloth napkins instead of paper napkins. ...
3
votes
3answers
121 views

What's the impact of throwing plastic in the bin?

There's a lot of fuss about reducing plastic usage, and one of the main reasons seems to be that otherwise it will end up in the environment, particularly the ocean. But if I dispose of the plastic ...
10
votes
3answers
5k views

Uses for fish bones?

We eat fish. I know some small fish bones are fried and eaten as food in some parts of the world, and they can be composted for mineral content. I do compost some already, but we don’t have that ...
12
votes
2answers
115 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 ...
11
votes
2answers
1k views

What alternative to composting is there to manage organic waste at home?

Organic waste (cooked food waste, uncooked food waste and garden waste) can usually be used productively in composting. However, in Kathmandu, where I am trying to find domestic solutions for organic ...
2
votes
1answer
44 views

What are the uses of bones from the different animals bred industrially?

The food industry grows animals for meat, but some parts cannot be sold. What is the final use of bones from the different animals grown industrially? pigs, beef, poultry.
8
votes
5answers
6k 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 ...
2
votes
0answers
41 views

Is burning PVC with municipal waste 'acceptable' nowadays?

I started to write a comment under the question Is there an efficient way to dispose of credit cards? about the dangers of burning PVC, because this can lead to dangerous chlorine compounds in the ...
12
votes
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......
11
votes
3answers
143 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
96 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
39 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?
0
votes
4answers
262 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 ...
13
votes
4answers
7k 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 ...
12
votes
3answers
840 views

What is the most efficient way to deal with electronic waste?

What is the most efficient way to deal with electronic waste like old computers, TVs, etc? More specifically, I have some old CDs and DVDs. I don't want to just dump them. What should I do with these ...
3
votes
1answer
65 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
59 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
120 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
105 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 ...
2
votes
2answers
245 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 ...
7
votes
5answers
162 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
83 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 ...
14
votes
3answers
11k 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 ...
3
votes
4answers
141 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, ...
1
vote
2answers
50 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
votes
0answers
54 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 ...
11
votes
2answers
132 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/...
5
votes
0answers
100 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
votes
2answers
407 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
votes
2answers
103 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
766 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
96 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, ...
17
votes
5answers
7k views

How to unsubscribe from junkmail and circulars?

I use Catalog Choice to unsubscribe from catalogs. However, I'm not sure how to stop receiving other junkmail and circulars that routinely come in the mail, such as ValPak coupons, ClipperMagazine, ...
1
vote
0answers
66 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 ...
29
votes
7answers
18k 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. ...
7
votes
1answer
205 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 ...
10
votes
2answers
170 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 ...
24
votes
4answers
387 views

Is it sustainable or necessary to use potable water to wash waste before recycling?

I live in a major metropolitan area in the United States, and we have a municipal recycling pick-up program. They advise us to wash food containers prior to putting them in our bins, and if an item ...
6
votes
2answers
226 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 ...
5
votes
2answers
171 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 ...
10
votes
5answers
19k views

Getting rid of immature windfallen apples

What are the (easiest) sustainable ways of getting rid of immature (windfallen) apples? Is it OK to put them into a compost? What part of compost can they make? Is it good to crush them before ...
13
votes
3answers
2k views

What can I do to give second life to half-drained batteries?

Suppose I'm replacing batteries in some powerful device like a flashlight - the flashlight will not even run on those batteries but some low power device like a TV remote or a wall clock will continue ...
8
votes
1answer
237 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
131 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 ...
7
votes
1answer
728 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
79 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 ...