Municipal Solid Waste


Michigan Environmental Education Curriculum
Where Does Our Garbage Go?

Compilation of America's Trash

America's typical waste consistency 

Municipal solid waste includes all the garbage thrown out from every home and community.

Michigan landfills accept waste from homes in Michigan as well as other states and Canada.  The average person creates 4.4 pounds of trash per day.  That is 1,600 lbs. of waste per person in a year! 

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Of course, weight isn't the only concern when it comes to quantity of waste.  The space or volume it takes up in a landfill is also important.  That 1,600 lbs. of garbage takes up about 2 cubic yards of space even after it is crushed.  That's bigger than your refrigerator!

You can lower the amount of waste that you create by reducing, reusing, or recycling whenever possible.  Even after the 3 R's, some waste still needs to go to the landfill. 

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