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Waste Industry Facts and Statistics

Catch the latest news and statistics about landfills and trash, following waste from its creation to final destination.

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Landfills

Rows of hazardous waste barrels.
What Happens at Hazardous Waste Disposal Sites?

Find out how hazardous waste disposal sites properly handle harmful materials like household cleaners and paint so you can safely get rid of them.

Waste Processing Plant Workers
What Happens to Trash After It’s Tossed?

After garbage is tossed, the majority of it is sent to a landfill to decompose, while recyclables are sorted and repurposed in a recycling center.

Waste to Energy Plant
A Waste-to-Energy Success Story

Learn how one waste-to-energy plant is surpassing expectations to prove that this process can positively impact both a city’s sustainability and economy.

byKatina Hazimihalis
Closed city landfill.
What Happens to Trash After a Landfill Is Full

Curious what happens after a landfill is capped? Instead of being abandoned, many are transformed into useful community spaces like parks, wildlife habitats or green energy projects. Find out what happens to old landfills and how they might be benefiting your neighborhood.

Going zero waste.
Zero Waste vs. Zero Landfill: The Big Difference

Zero landfill means sending nothing to the landfill via recycling, but zero waste supports eliminating trash altogether by redesigning product life cycles.

Modern Landfill
How Modern Landfills Protect Our Environment

Sanitary landfills operate by layering waste and tightly sealing it. Experts monitor the drainage and gas collection systems beneath the waste for leaks.

Anaerobic Digestion Plant With Two Trees and a Bright Green Field in the Foreground
How Anaerobic Digestion Turns Waste Into Energy

What is anaerobic digestion? It’s a process that aims to turn waste into renewable energy. We talked to the experts to learn how anaerobic digestion works and the potential benefits.

byKatina Hazimihalis
Woman Tossing Coffee Cup in Trash.
How to Safely Dispose of Refrigerator and AC Freon

After you throw your garbage away, it's usually sorted at a transfer station then sent to another facility. Start here to learn where your trash goes next.

An MSW Landfill with a Black Safety Liner.
The 4 Main Types of Landfills

Learn about the four main landfill types — MSW, industrial, hazardous and green — and how each works to ensure your trash is properly taken care of.

Barbershop Shaving
What You Need to Know About Biohazardous Waste

Many businesses encounter biohazard risks every day. Learn helpful biohazardous waste storage and disposal methods to keep your workplace safe.

Empty Landfill
How Landfill Gas Can Power Our Future

Capturing landfill gas and converting waste to energy is a simple process. According to the EPA there are over 600 facilities operating across the country, so you may have trash to thank for your electricity.

Transferring waste using equipment.
What Really Happens at Waste Transfer Stations

Ever wonder what happens at a waste transfer station? Find out exactly how they work, and the important role they play in managing our trash.

Trash Statistics

Full Shopping Cart Next to Green Bins of Produce at a Grocery Store
Grocery Store Waste Stats That Demand Change

Are these grocery store waste statistics true where you shop? Learn how much food your supermarket throws away, why so many don’t donate and how they could benefit by cutting waste.

byKatina Hazimihalis
Waste Processing Plant Workers
What Happens to Trash After It’s Tossed?

After garbage is tossed, the majority of it is sent to a landfill to decompose, while recyclables are sorted and repurposed in a recycling center.

A Pile of Garbage Lies on the Ground.
How Illegal Dumping Affects Your Local Environment

Illegal dumping impacts you in many ways—from your health to your property value and community well-being. Learn the facts and some solutions to the problem.

A customer holds vegetables and plastic grocery bags at a farmer’s market.
Pros and Cons of the Plastic Bag Ban Debate

Plastic bags can contaminate food sources when improperly disposed, but will your food be exposed to bacteria without them?

Garbage cans at the curb.
U.S. Trash Production Statistics and Our Solutions

The U.S. produces 268 million tons of waste — 140 million going into landfills — each year, with the average American tossing 4.5 pounds of trash per day.

Woman Tossing Coffee Cup in Trash.
How to Safely Dispose of Refrigerator and AC Freon

After you throw your garbage away, it's usually sorted at a transfer station then sent to another facility. Start here to learn where your trash goes next.

Restaurant Food Waste
Feed the Hungry With Your Restaurant’s Leftovers

Learn the facts about restaurant food waste and how you can start your own food donation program with help from groups like the Food Donation Connection.

byKevin Rossignol