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Old 01-15-2020, 02:36 PM
PJ Hansen is offline
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Would sending yard waste to the landfill lower CO2 levels?


I have been composting all the grass clippings and leaves from my yard for decades, but now I wonder if we should bury it all in a landfill. Wouldn't sending yard waste to the landfill help sequestor CO2 from the air? I understand that eventually they'd still decompose to CO2, but we're going to need all the short-medium term help we can get in heading off big trouble.

Since mixed plastics recycling is currently problematic, shouldn't all the plastic go to the landfill as well? Seems like enormous landfills are still better than a climate catastrophe.
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Old 01-15-2020, 02:48 PM
filmore is offline
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As you said, the decomposing organic matter will still release gasses. But some landfills are designed to make productive use of the gasses produced from decay. Like this BMW factory that gets 60% of it's energy from methane released from landfill. If your landfill is designed like that, it might be better to throw your clippings in the trash so that the waste gasses can create electricity.
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Old 01-15-2020, 02:53 PM
am77494 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PJ Hansen View Post
Wouldn't sending yard waste to the landfill help sequestor CO2 from the air?
Most likely not. Fuel used for transportation of the yard waste to landfill will add CO2 emissions. The compost would have offset the need for fertilizers, which will now have to made using fossil fuels.

Also, you will have anaerobic composting at the landfill versus presumably aerobic at your place. Anaerobic composting produces methane which is more harmful than CO2. So unless the landfill has methane capture and power production, it will harm the planet more.


Quote:
Since mixed plastics recycling is currently problematic, shouldn't all the plastic go to the landfill as well? .
They do go to the landfill. Just because you put them neatly in a recycle bin doesn’t mean it actually gets recycled.

Most plastic in the US is going to the landfill since China stopped accepting the plastic. Same for paper .
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