The Dangers Of Household Garbage


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The Dangers Of Household Garbage

 

Reducing the hazardous waste in America's landfills starts at home.
Millions of households are producing billions of pounds of solid waste.
Products used every day in our homes leach hazardous chemicals after entering
landfills. There are a number of simple steps that average consumer can take
to limit the damage that many of these toxic materials are doing to the
environment.

The garbage situation has become a big concern in cities all around the
country and not only is this a political issue, but it is also a problem that
has caught the attention of the general population. We all realise there is a
growing problem but nobody likes to admit that their garbage is contributing
to the problem.

Many municipalities have already started a recycling program to deal
with the growing mountains of paper, plastic, glass, etc. Although it takes a
bit of effort on the part of the public to sort and separate their garbage,
people are now beginning to realise that the future of our environment is at
stake.

One household product that is causing a problem these days is throwaway
batteries. Each year, Americans throw away 84.000 tons of alkaline batteries.
These AA, C and D cells that power electronic toys and games, portable audio
equipment and a wide range of other gadgets comprise 20% of the household
hazardous materials present around the country in America's landfills.

When a battery in one of the products we use fails, we simply run out
and buy a replacement. The dead battery ends up in the garbage and no one
thinks about where it goes and what happens to it after the garbage is picked
up.

Sealed inside these alkaline cells are harmful materials which are not
encountered by consumers during normal use. However, when the batteries enter
a landfill, the casings can be crushed, or can easily degrade, which causes
mercury and other toxins to leach into the environment.

The problem of batteries in landfills is one of the easiest to solve.
Using rechargeable power can significantly reduce the number of batteries
which end up in landfills. Rechargeable batteries can be used again and
again, up to 1,000 times. One rechargeable cell can replace up to 300
throwaway batteries, keeping the landfill free not only from the batteries
themselves, but also from the paper and plastic materials that are used to
package them.

There are a number of manufacturers in the country today who deal in
rechargeable products and some of them have a number of programs already in
place to ensure that rechargeable batteries never enter a landfill at all.
For example, one of the largest manufacturers of rechargeable products is now
offering a lifetime replacement guarantee on all round cells. If the product
ever fails to accept or hold a charge, the company will promptly replace it
and recycle the used cell.

If you have an environmental agency in your area, you might like to
work on this issue with them, or perhaps they already have a program set up
to dispose of used batteries. As a concerned citizen, your suggestions and
input will be invaluable to them as they attempt to come up with some
solutions.





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