Ecology and the Environment

How is air space maximized in a landfill?
Answered by Discovery Channel
  • Discovery Channel

    Discovery Channel

  1. Air space is important in a landfill because if there is more air space, then more of the landfill can be used. To increase air space, trash is compacted into cells. For example, in a 50 x 50 x 14 cell in the North Wake County Landfill in North Carolina, 2,500 tons of trash is compressed in the cell at 1,500 pounds per cubic yard. Cells are compressed several times with tractors, bulldozers and other heavy equipment. They are then covered with soil and arranged in layers and rows. No mattresses, foam or other bulky materials are put in a landfill because they take up too much space.

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