Sustainable Waste Management One Landfill at a Time

Thanks to all who participated in the Global Methane Forum. We’ll be using this blog to highlight some of the presentations from the Forum in the coming weeks. In the meantime, enjoy this report on an integrated solid waste management training that took place in January.

The International Solid Waste Association (ISWA) held its “Winter School” in January 2016 at the University of Texas at Arlington (UTA) and The City of Denton, Texas. Organized by UTA’s Solid Waste Institute for Sustainability (SWIS), the training focused on providing waste professionals from 27 countries with the principles for integrated solid waste management (ISWM) and proper operation and management of landfills and landfill mining to ensure environmental protection, methane reduction, and protection of public health. Students of the Winter School participated in technical sessions on landfill design and operation and field trips to landfills for hands-on training.

The Winter School students completed an intensive 2-week program that ended with a “Global Waste Management Perspective” panel discussion from the local, national and global perspectives. Kata Tisza (ISWA); Vance Kemler (Solid Waste Operations of the City of Denton); Brenda Haney (City of Irving Landfill, Texas); David Biderman (SWANA); and Tom Frankiewicz (U.S. EPA Landfill Methane Outreach Program and Global Methane Initiative) presented in the panel. SWIS Director, Dr. Md. Sahadat Hossain, presented participants with their course completion certificate in the evening gala dinner. The program concluded with a group pledge to make a sustainable world where resource management will become the primary driver of waste management. Topics the Winter School students focused on included:

  • Emphasis on the “Three Rs” – reduce, reuse, and recycle – and other waste management alternatives including training on organic waste management, diversion techniques to avoid methane generation, and capture of methane generated from anaerobic digestion.
  • Sanitary landfills with capture, combustion or utilization of landfill gas (LFG) as a component of an integrated approach to solid waste management.
  • Proper landfill operation and management to facilitate capture and utilization of LFG as a critical component of environmental protection of air and groundwater.

For more information on landfills and ISWM, please visit the GMI MSW page and ISWA.

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