GHG Emissions from Landfills Decline 16 Percent, EPA Reports

Allan Gerlat, News Editor

April 24, 2012

1 Min Read
GHG Emissions from Landfills Decline 16 Percent, EPA Reports

Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from landfills have decreased 16.2 percent since 1990, according to new data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Overall, the waste management services industry generated just 1.8 percent of the total anthropogenic greenhouse gases in the United States, the Washington-based National Solid Wastes Management Association (NSWMA) reported in a news release.

The NSWMA said the EPA greenhouse gas inventory report “demonstrates the significant progress made by the solid waste services industry.” The decrease, the association said, has resulted from a greater use of gas collection and destruction equipment.

Anthropogenic methane emissions from natural gas systems and enteric fermentation have increased since 1990, and now they are more than twice the emissions from landfills, the NSWMA said.

The gases generated from landfills, composting, and incineration totaled about 124 million tons of carbon dioxide equivalent. Municipal solid waste and industrial waste landfills reduced their total anthropogenic methane emissions by more than 27 percent since 1990, to 108 million tons of carbon dioxide equivalent from 148 million tons.

"Our industry expects to continue reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the future, as additional investments are made to capture and destroy landfill gas," said Bruce Parker, NSWMA president and CEO. "We're proud of this trend. It is another example of our industry's commitment to caring for our environment."

About the Author(s)

Allan Gerlat

News Editor, Waste360

Allan Gerlat joined the Waste360 staff in September 2011 as news editor. He was the editor of Waste & Recycling News for the first 16 years of its history, and under his guidance the publication won 27 national and regional awards.

Before Waste & Recycling News, Allan worked at another Crain Communications publication, Rubber & Plastics News, which covers rubber product manufacturing. He began with the publication as associate editor and eventually became managing editor, a position he held for nine years.

Allan is a graduate of Ohio University, where he earned a BS in journalism. He is based in Sagamore Hills, in northeast Ohio.

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