Tuesday, April 23rd by Junkluggers
We’re creating more and more junk, but we’re running out of places to put it.
As society advanced, we manufactured more and more products designed to make our lives easier. But this also created more junk, and that junk needed a new home. As a result, the landfill was born as a final resting place for everyone’s discarded junk.
Landfills aren’t a modern creation. We’ve been dealing with junk since the early days of civilization. Let’s dive into a brief history of landfills, how people use and maintain them, and why they can't hold everyone’s junk.
As people spread and civilization grew, there was a need for better junk removal tactics. Colonists in 1710 Virginia dug holes to bury all their junk, including discarded armor. But the colonies weren’t hit the hardest by junk — it was the growing cities that found their junk burdensome.
Junk continued to accumulate for many years. In 1894, there were barges full of garbage floating down the Potomac River. New York City was still dumping garbage into the Atlantic as late as 1933. Shortly thereafter, George Roby Dempster introduced the Dempster Dumpster in 1936 to help with junk. But true junk removal took a long time to really catch on.
We create more products as society consumes more stuff, which means more junk. That’s because many people don’t donate or recycle, which has resulted in a need for more landfills.
Landfills are the most common tool we have to deal with junk disposal. Read on to learn how landfills work!
Many people eventually realized that landfills aren’t good for the environment. Burying junk in the ground and covering it over with dirt doesn't make these things go away. Many of the items that they threw away also weren’t biodegradable and as a result, had a negative impact on the environment.
If landfills were going to continue business as usual, they had new priorities to consider, including:
Today’s landfills take the environment into consideration through construction methods. Current landfills are constructed in many layers to reduce their environmental impact.
Photo Credit: EPA
When a landfill is full, the cross-section will look like this, from bottom to top:
These new designs for landfills are far more environmentally conscious than their predecessors. But landfills still create problems, no matter how carefully constructed they are.
Although landfills have come a long way from the days of the Greeks, they still have many downsides. These are the biggest problems caused by landfills:
There are better options than landfills. We don’t have to rely on them as the end-all option for our junk. Here are some alternatives to throwing away your junk and contributing to the landfill problem:
The Junkluggers eliminates the need for landfills with their expert junk removal services.
These options require extra time, care, and effort, but they’re safer and more eco-friendly than taking the easy way out and dumping in a landfill. It’s tougher to recycle and repurpose, but the benefits outweigh the time, effort, and cost on our part. China’s ban on most recyclables has made it even tougher, but we’re sticking to our goal of achieving a more eco-friendly future for junk removal.
If everyone embraces donating, recycling, and repurposing, we can reduce the need for landfills. Only then will we find new homes for items and reduce our junk output.
In the next chapter, we’ll cover what happens to different types of materials in a landfill and the way these items affect the environment.
Plus, check out our other blogs to learn more about waste management, sustainable junk removal, and so much more!