The Story of Stuff Mining and Solid Waste Discussion

Anonymous

Question Description

Mining and Solid Waste

hello i need help with two discussion questions and two replies to my friends discussions just like the one we did before

here are the questions


1. After watching Annie Leonard's Story of Stuff, ponder how humans got to the point where we are so trapped in the process of Take-Make-Waste. What are the impacts on people within this process? How can people break this model and shift toward the economic model of Borrow-Use-Return? How can we keep money flowing through our economic system without continually extracting new raw materials?

2. A very smart friend of mine recently said that the best land investment one could make is to buy up old landfills. He says we will, in the not too distant future, be excavating landfills to extract the incredible amounts of metals, glass, and energy resources that are buried in them. What might be some of the possible risks and benefits of such an "investment"?

sources:

Annie Leonard's Story of Stuff,

https://storyofstuff.org/movies/story-of-stuff/

Overview of Ideas

Solid Waste Management found in attached PDF file


and here are two of my friends discussions aslo found in attached PDF files :

friend1

friend2

Unformatted Attachment Preview

Consider that the vast majority of the waste produced in from mining, industrial and agricultural processes, (isnʼt it interesting that that is also where most of our water goes!), and that municipal waste is just a fraction of that. Of course our daily behaviors can have an impact on that municipal waste fraction, but our purchasing choices can also impact the industrial and agricultural sectors by supporting producers that minimize their waste generation by using recycled materials in their products and processes. Waste auditors estimate that 75-90% of what we throw away could actually be reused, recycled, or composted. Most waste goes to either landfills or incinerators. (Most countries donʼt dump too much garbage into the ocean… anymore.) Study the figure in chapter 16 to see how a landfill is constructed with its various impermeable layers, liners, and cells. Landfills must minimize the amount of liquid that seeps out of the landfill through the percolation of rain and the liquids that are thrown away. Those liquids must be collected and sent to a wastewater treatment plant to ensure that the toxic substances in that “leachate” does not contaminate surface or groundwater supplies. Some landfills are also equipped with methane collection systems. Methane is produced through the partial decomposition of the organic materials in a landfill under low-oxygen conditions. This methane can be directed to an electric power station where the methane is burned to turn generators. These waste-to-energy processes are becoming more common and economically feasible. Incinerators are more common in areas where land prices are high. Incinerators burn the trash—and sometimes have waste-to-energy production processes built in as well. They can have a serious impact on air quality in the region, however. Dioxins, while heavily regulated, are some of the more serious air pollutants from incinerators, which arise from the burning of plastics, bleached paper, and various other commonly thrown away items. Most non-plastic organic materials can be composted, though. Food waste, paper, cardboard, landscape waste, and bio-based plastics can be transformed into rich compost to enhance soil fertility and organic content. As we saw in the week on agricultural systems, healthy soil is essential for adequate food production. Composting is an effective way to nurture good soils! Many paper products can and should be recycled first, though (before being reduced to compost). Depending on the quality of the fibers in the paper, it can be recycled numerous times before the fibers are so degraded and shortened as to not hold together well. Of course, reusing and recycling paper reduces the need to convert forests into paper. The same is true of petroleum-based plastics. Plastics are made from oil—either petroleum or plant-based oils. Most plastics can be reused over and over and over, and they degrade in landfills terribly slowly—taking hundreds or maybe even thousands of years to disappear. (We donʼt actually know because plastics have only been around for less than a century!) Metals are also quite valuable in recycling markets—so much so that some valuable metals are often stripped from vacant and abandoned buildings. It is clear to the metals industry that melting down and reforming existing metals is much more cost-effective than mining new ore, which then has to go through incredibly expensive and energy intensive processes to smelt and purify. Glass and ceramics can be ground up and added to street surfaces, concrete, and other building materials. Glass can also be melted down and reshaped. Of course, our e-waste is a relatively new phenomenon that we are only recently beginning to deal with more responsibly. E-Waste collection centers receive all sorts of electronics—anything with a cord or a battery, usually—and disassemble the items to separate the various types of metals while containing the toxic components. Coltan is a mineral mined in the Congo in Africa that is an essential material in the components of our electronics. These mining operations lead to deforestation, loss of habitat for many important species (including gorillas!) and the exploitation of local populations of people, all of which argue for the need to capture and reuse those valuable metals from pre-existing electronics. Mining The impacts of our waste disposal practices are reason enough to consider alternatives to throwing things away such as reusing and recycling. However, getting a grasp on the impact of mining on the environment should be the biggest motivator to reduce, reuse and recycle. Our economy continually produces “stuff” that we need to buy, and most of that “stuff” gets thrown away. In most cases the materials to produce all of that stuff comes from raw sources—freshly mined metals, quarried rocks, cut forests, and drilled oil. Most of our “stuff” could be made out of pre-existing materials—i.e., “recycled materials”. Mining, whether it is surface mining--strip mining or open pit mining—or subsurface mining, has huge impacts on the surface ecosystems and surface and groundwater systems in the region where the mine is in operation. Surface mining involves scraping off the vegetation (and its associated animal communities) on the surface to dig out the rock layers beneath. The water used in the various mining and purification processes is usually quite toxic, and often impacts local streams. While restoration of those ecosystems is now required, restoration processes are difficult, expensive and usually lead to much more simplified communities that now live on the tops of toxic mining tailings. Check out this short movie trailer for The Last Mountain, which was a Sundance Film Festival winner last year. It will provide some quick images into how mountaintop removal for coal (a form of “strip mining”) is impacting water, ecosystems and people. http://thelastmountainmovie.com/video/ In short, mining in all its forms is destructive to the earth and to the people who live in the region of the mine (even if it provides jobs). Humans have extracted enough raw materials from the surface of the earth to reuse and recycle over and over again without much need to ever extract any more—if only we would just get better at recapturing those reusable metal resources and switching to other renewable resources for energy. After watching Annie Leonard's Story of Stuff, ponder how humans got to the point where we are so trapped in the process of Take-Make-Waste. What are the impacts on people within this process? How can people break this model and shift toward the economic model of Borrow-Use-Return? How can we keep money flowing through our economic system without continually extracting new raw materials? answer 1. : The impacts on people in this process are the decreasing amounts of material there will be to use while this process keeps moving forward. The materials are used, made, and then thrown away and never used again. We can break this model mainly by reusing and recycling the materials after their initial uses. We can keep money flowing through the economic system without continually extracting raw materials by selling reused materials and recycled material. —————————————————————————————————————— A very smart friend of mine recently said that the best land investment one could make is to buy up old landfills. He says we will, in the not too distant future, be excavating landfills to extract the incredible amounts of metals, glass, and energy resources that are buried in them. What might be some of the possible risks and benefits of such an "investment"? answer 2.: Most of the risks of a landfill come from the gases that are found in them such as ammonia, sulfide, methane, and carbon dioxide. These gases can be dangerous, especially combined. Many of the benefits come from what your friend said in terms of the reusable material found in them such as plastic and glass. They can truly be a benefit in the coming years with the amount of raw materials decreasing in our world. After watching Annie Leonard's Story of Stuff, ponder how humans got to the point where we are so trapped in the process of Take-Make-Waste. What are the impacts on people within this process? How can people break this model and shift toward the economic model of Borrow-Use-Return? How can we keep money flowing through our economic system without continually extracting new raw materials? answer 1. : Impacts of the Take-Make-Waste process are that, it is the major cause of the pollution of water, air and soil. The death rate increases due to this. It has a greater impact on the lives of the children. Because of the air pollution, weather patterns also changed. This also causes many diseases like heart disease and respiratory function imbalance. People should move towards the economic model by realizing the value of the used products. However, material would be saved by adopting the approach of recycling. Innovative techniques should be introduced for making of products to reuse them. The renewable material should be provided for production, eliminate the wastage of material, extend the life of product by repairing techniques, share the information related to product to the customers and give product as a service like product lease. —————————————————————————————————————— A very smart friend of mine recently said that the best land investment one could make is to buy up old landfills. He says we will, in the not too distant future, be excavating landfills to extract the incredible amounts of metals, glass, and energy resources that are buried in them. What might be some of the possible risks and benefits of such an "investment"? answer 2- : This investment might somewhere benefits by having the precious metals and fuel found by digging it. If the demand for the precious metals is high then it would be the greater benefit, because these metals are expensive. Most of the landfills material can be recycled and some landfills can be mined for the energy projects, energy from waste. Though, the information related to old landfills is not available, that what type of waste was there in the landfills. So, the risk involved in buying the old landfills is that, precious metals might not be present there and you waste the money by buying it. ...
Purchase answer to see full attachment

Tutor Answer

DrWood
School: New York University

Attached.

Running head: MINING AND SOLID WASTE

Mining and Solid Waste
Name
Institution

MINING AND SOLID WASTE

2

After watching Annie Leonard's Story of Stuff, ponder how humans got to the point where
we are so trapped in the process of Take-Make-Waste. What are the impacts on people
within this process? How can people break this model and shift toward the economic model
of Borrow-Use-Return? How can we keep money flowing through our economic system
without continually extracting new raw materials?
The take-make-waste process mainly impacts people through environmental pollution.
This process leaves to air, water, a...

flag Report DMCA
Review

Anonymous
Excellent job

Brown University





1271 Tutors

California Institute of Technology




2131 Tutors

Carnegie Mellon University




982 Tutors

Columbia University





1256 Tutors

Dartmouth University





2113 Tutors

Emory University





2279 Tutors

Harvard University





599 Tutors

Massachusetts Institute of Technology



2319 Tutors

New York University





1645 Tutors

Notre Dam University





1911 Tutors

Oklahoma University





2122 Tutors

Pennsylvania State University





932 Tutors

Princeton University





1211 Tutors

Stanford University





983 Tutors

University of California





1282 Tutors

Oxford University





123 Tutors

Yale University





2325 Tutors