Dec
16
2017
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Village Life
Heavy equipment fills and flattens the approximately 6,000 tons of daily garbage on the Rumpke landfill in Colerain Twp. Much of the machinery is powered by the methane gas recovered from decomposition of the garbage. (Photo by Dylan Taylor-Lehman)

Heavy equipment fills and flattens the approximately 6,000 tons of daily garbage on the Rumpke landfill in Colerain Twp. Much of the machinery is powered by the methane gas recovered from decomposition of the garbage. (Photo by Dylan Taylor-Lehman)

One thousand acres of garbage

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Yellow Springs’ garbage ends up in the Rumpke landfill in Colerain Township. The same company processes the village’s recycling at a facility not far from the landfill. Approximately 10 Yellow Springs residents recently toured these locations on a trip organized by the Green Environmental Coalition.

The landfill serves most municipalities within a 60-mile radius and takes in about 6,000 tons of garbage per day, according to Molly Yeager, the Rumpke representative who led the tour. The site is 1,000 acres, about a third of which is used for the landfill. More than half of what is dumped could be reused or recycled in some way, said Yeager, and dirty diapers account for four percent of the landfill’s’ contents. (Four percent of 6,000 tons means roughly 240 tons of used diapers are deposited each day.) The landfill has employees specifically tasked with retrieving flying plastic bags. The landfill also harvests the gas resulting from decomposing garbage and uses it to power its trucks and area homes.

How does a landfill work? What are the environmental risks, and how does the landfill attempt to manage them? How much space is left to take our garbage?

And this isn’t even getting into the process used to sort recycling.

A News reporter was on that tour and will present an overview of the area’s garbage and recycling services in next week’s paper.

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One thousand acres of garbage

by YS News Staff