At General Kinematics, we understand that creating a brighter future means providing products that make life better. That’s why we’re proud to help municipal solid waste programs around the world with our innovative equipment and services.
Municipal waste programs are the foundation of any civilized society — but how much time have you spent considering the role that municipal waste plays in our daily lives? What is municipal solid waste? Where does it go? And why is it important to keep in mind every day?
To answer the question, “What exactly is municipal solid waste?” In a nutshell, it’s garbage. Everything from the food wrappers you throw away to the batteries you properly dispose of. Everything that ends up in a garbage can is considered municipal solid waste.
Typically, waste ends up in one of three places: a landfill, a recycling plant, or a compost pile. The destination all depends on how the waste is sorted. The machinery used to sort the waste must be of the highest quality to ensure that everything from leftover food to discarded concrete is sorted and disposed of properly. That’s why MSW systems around the world rely on General Kinematics to help keep the heart of their operations processing material effectively.
Additionally, there are ways that communities are turning waste into energy.
When a waste management vehicle collects non-recyclable material from homes or businesses, it is transported to a waste-to-energy plant where it is transformed into energy. When a truck arrives, the load is unloaded into a rubbish storage bunker and processed by an overhead crane. Once the trash has been separated, it is ready to go through the combustion process, which is the most common and oldest thermal process.
Other methods of converting energy include:
Gasification: The conversion of waste materials into a mixture of flammable gases in an oxygen-depleted atmosphere (as opposed to combustion, which takes place in an oxygen-rich environment).
Pyrolysis: Similar to gasification, except the temperature is higher. Whereas gasification employs high temperatures ranging from 900 to 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit, pyrolysis uses relatively low temperatures ranging from 600 to 1,499 degrees Fahrenheit.
Fermentation: Microorganisms and yeast convert biomass and biowaste into liquid ethanol. Distilled ethanol is used to create biofuel grade ethanol, ethyl alcohol.
In the United States, MSW is a force unlike anywhere else in the world.
Given how much garbage we generate, it’s extremely important to ensure that we’re doing all we can as individuals to decrease the amount of garbage we produce on a daily basis.
If you’re thinking about ways to reduce your daily garbage production, here are some simple tips to keep in mind.
On a company level or larger scale, consider some of these ideas for reducing your waste production:
It’s just a matter of getting in the habit of mindfulness to transform yourself into an active supporter of a healthy environmental future. To learn more about MSW and the innovative solutions offered by General Kinematics, contact us today!