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What is landfill?

imageLandfill still remains the main method of dealing with our waste in the UK. Although many of us have now got the message about the importance of recycling and doing our bit, around half of all refuse is still being dumped into a hole and covered over.

Every year we produce about 3% more waste than the year before. 

Landfill remains an important disposal method for waste that can’t be recycled or disposed of by other means. Landfill sites are designed and operated to strict standards in order to reduce environmental effects, and with strict landfill directives - the amount of waste, particularly hazardous waste, is being reduced.

We produce and use 20 times more plastic today than we did 50 years ago

How does landfill work?


Waste is checked to make sure it is compliant with the landfill’s operating permit, the waste is then tipped into the site, compacted and covered. This is to minimise smells and pests.

Every day 80 million food and drink cans end up in landfill

Waste is then decomposed, resulting in gasses, particularly methane which has to be vented to safety. This methane venting process is the evolving of gasses that used to make landfill sites unsuitable for further development for some time.

Methane is around 21 times more potent than carbon dioxide

When the landfill site reaches eventually reaches capacity it is covered with clay and other soils to produce a ‘cap’ which will eventually allow the land to be reused for agriculture and other purposes.

An average of 40% of Britain’s methane emissions result come from landfill sites, however with the strict operations in place it means that increasing amounts of the UK’s electricity supply now comes from gasses recovered from landfill.

LSPS recycle as much of the contents of their skips as possible, reducing the waste that gets put into landfill. Read our advice on skips to do your bit for the environment.

Thinking of hiring a skip? Read our additional tips and sizes to suite your job.

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