Chapter 7

Operations Management and Industrial Waste

History

What happens when products, packaging, and production waste materials are discarded? In the 1900s–1950s, municipal waste was collected and stored in open dumps. Open dumps were uncovered, unlined collection sites where garbage would sit and decompose. Over time, garbage dumps generate leachate, which is a liquid form of decomposing waste. Without adequate synthetic liners beneath the dumps, leachate could soak into surrounding soils and groundwater.1 A trend for cities and towns across the country dealing with insufficient waste management capacity was literally to set the garbage on fire. The open-air burning of trash has obvious environmental and public health impacts. To address ...

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