What Do You Know About Waste? – The Different Types and Their Uses

The average person may only be aware of the types of waste they encounter on a day-to-day basis, but unfortunately and unsurprisingly there are usually much more that they may not know about. It it important to increase everyone’s awareness about the different types of waste produced as they all in one way or another, affect us. Just because we don’t knowingly come into contact with certain types, doesn’t mean it isn’t important to educate ourselves and others about them and improve our overall environmental awareness. After all, we are now seeing the damage waste accumulated from previous generations is having, yet progress rectifying this is slow.

Below is a list of the different types of waste that are created by humans.

Municipal solid waste

This is essentially everyday trash that is accumulated such as; product packaging, food scraps, newspapers, clothes etc. Often, this sort of waste can contain valuable materials that can be reused such as plastics and paper, however, sorting between the different types can be difficult if they are not segregated early on. Equipment such as industrial shredders from Metso waste recycling make such processes simpler, with the result being smaller size waste ready to be utilised in energy production.

Commercial waste

This is dry waste created from business processes, be it paper from offices, or plastics from product manufacturing etc. Usually, this waste has some value as long as it is properly segregated, but considering the diversity in materials collected as commercial waste, it is more effective to shred all the materials into smaller pieces before attempting segregation.

Construction and demolition waste

During the process of construction and demolition a large amount of waste is produced, much of which is often not utilised even though it is almost an endless supply of raw materials. Since these processes are almost constant due to continuous renovations, they are a source of valuable raw materials such as concrete, wood and metal that have many uses if segregated properly. One of the main barriers to their reuse is that they are often heavy and bulky, making them costly to transport and reprocess.

Plastic waste

Specifically, this is one of the most common waste known to the average person, with the material getting especially bad press due to its obvious environmental effects if not disposed of properly. Due to the versatility of the material, plastic can come in various forms that can make it difficult to recycle if not sorted properly. However, it is a very valuable and versatile material that can be reused or used as waste fuel.

Paper and cardboard waste

Whilst being biodegradable, paper and cardboard waste are usually one of the most recycled. Once they have been processed, cleaned and dried, they are usually ready to create new paper or cardboard. If they cannot be cleaned, they can be processed and made into waste fuel. There is pretty much always a use for paper and cardboard waste.

Bulky waste

Waste such as white goods which are often too heavy or bulky to recycle conventionally contain many valuable materials than can be reused. Take for example washing machines and refrigerators. Whilst they might come to the end of their lifespan as a whole, the materials that make it up do not, and can be recovered for resale. Fly tipping is a common problem in areas where there are few recycling facilities or effective recovery procedures, so investment in machinery such as Metso industrial shredders to break these items down into more manageable sizes, can be especially useful.

Metal Waste

Scrap metal can come from a variety of sources of sources such as old cars and household goods. Often, this material can be retrieved without compromising their physical property and there is always a constant demand for metals, making it good for resale.