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Waste

Waste


Waste has been defined as a moveable object with no direct use that is discarded permanently. There are many different kinds of waste, including solid, liquid, gaseous, hazardous, radioactive, and medical. Wastes can also be defined by generator, for example, municipal, commercial, industrial, or agricultural.


Waste Types

A solid waste does not flow like water or gas. Examples include paper, wood, metals, glass, plastic, and contaminated soil. Solid wastes can be hazardous or nonhazardous. Problems associated with nonhazardous solid waste include aesthetic problems (litter and odors), leachate from the infiltration of water through the waste, and off-gases resulting from biodegradation. Nonhazardous solid wastes are commonly handled by recycling, combustion, land-filling, and composting.

Liquid wastes must be transported in containers or through pipes. Examples include sewage, contaminated groundwater, and industrial liquid discharges. In some cases, direct discharge to the environment may be allowed. However, depending on the waste's characteristics, direct discharge may cause unacceptable environmental harm. For example, large amounts of sewage discharged into a stream can result in fish kills. Liquid wastes containing excreta can contain pathogenic organisms. Other liquid wastes may be toxic. Liquid wastes are often handled at wastewater treatment plants, followed by discharge to the environment.

Sludges contain various ratios of liquid and solid material. They generally result from liquid waste-treatment operations, such as sedimentation tanks. Depending on the percent of solids, sludge may have the characteristics of a liquid or solid. Biological sludge can contain pathogenic organisms. Some sludges contain heavy metals or other toxins. Sludges are commonly handled with treatment, combustion, landfilling, and land application.

Gaseous wastes, of course, consist of gases. They are primarily generated by combustion (e.g., internal combustion engines, incinerators, coal-fired electrical generating plants) and industrial processes. Depending on their characteristics, gaseous wastes can be odiferous or toxic. Some are implicated in global warming, ozone depletion, and smog. Gaseous wastes may be released to the atmosphere or captured/treated with pollution control equipment.

Hazardous wastes pose a substantial present or potential danger to human health or the environment. They can be solid, sludge, liquid, or gas. Hazardous wastes have at least one of the following characteristics: corrosivity, ignitability, reactivity, and toxicity. Hazardous wastes are commonly handled by recycling, combustion, stabilization, chemical-physical-biological treatment, and landfilling.

Radioactive wastes emit particles or electromagnetic radiation (e.g., alpha particles, beta particles, gamma rays, and x rays). Radioactive wastes can be high level, transuranic, or low level. High-level radioactive wastes are from spent or reprocessed nuclear reactor fuel. Transuranic wastes are from isotopes above uranium in the periodic table. They are generally low in radioactivity, but have long half-lives . Low-level wastes have little radioactivity and can often be handled with little or no shielding. Radiation can damage living cells and cause cancer. Although recycling and incineration may reduce waste amounts, the primary method for handling radioactive wastes is long-term storage.

Medical wastes, that is, wastes generated at medical facilities, can be infectious, toxic, and/or radioactive. Though they may have hazardous characteristics, they are not regulated as hazardous wastes. Some medical wastes are sterilized, disinfected, or incinerated, especially infectious wastes. Recycling and landfilling are also used to dispose of them.


Waste Amounts

The amount of waste generated by a given household is directly related to lifestyle, culture, and economic status. Climate can also increase generation rates (e.g., yard waste). General differences are great enough to produce different country-wide generation rates. The United States has the highest rate, 2.0 kilograms per person per dayprobably the result of high economic status, a culture of consumption, and a lifestyle that includes large amounts of disposable items. However, the United States also has a relatively high recycling rate, 27.8 percent in 1999. Some European countries have generation rates varying from 0.9 to 1.7 kilograms per person per day. Developing regions tend to have still lower rates, ranging from 0.3 to 1.

see also Air Pollution; Hazardous Waste; Lifestyle; Medical Waste; Ozone; Radioactive Waste; Solid Waste; Waste to Energy; Waste, Transportation of; Wastewater Treatment.

Bibliography

davis, m., and cornwell, d. (1998). introduction to environmental engineering, 3rd edition. new york: wcb mcgraw-hill.

reinhardt, p., and gordon, j. (1991). infectious and medical waste management. chelsea, mn: lewis publishers.

siegel, m. (1993). "garbage and other pollutionhow do we live with all the trash?" information plus. detroit, mi: gale.

tchobanoglous, g.; theisen, h.; and vigil, s. (1993). integrated solid waste management. new york: mcgraw-hill.

Jess Everett

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Waste

WASTE

Harmful or destructive use of real property by one in rightful possession of the property.

Waste is an unreasonable or improper use of land by an individual in rightful possession of the land. A party with an interest in a parcel of land may file a civil action based on waste committed by an individual who also has an interest in the land. Such disputes may arise between life tenants and remainderpersons and landlords and tenants. The lawsuit may seek an injunction to stop the waste, damages for the waste, or both. Actions based on waste ordinarily arise when an owner of land takes exception to the manner in which the possessor or tenant is using the land.

The four common types of waste are voluntary, permissive, ameliorating, and equitable waste. Voluntary waste is the willful destruction or carrying away of something attached to the property. In an action for voluntary waste, the plaintiff must show that the waste was caused by an affirmative act of the tenant. Such waste might occur if a life tenant (a person who possesses the land for his lifetime, after which a remainderperson takes possession) chops down all the trees on the occupied land and sells them as lumber.

Voluntary waste will also occur, for example, if the tenant of an apartment removes kitchen appliances that are attached to the apartment floors and walls. More commonly, the tenant breaks a window, damages walls or woodwork, or otherwise damages the apartment. Landlords typically protect against this type of voluntary waste by requiring a damage or security deposit from the tenant at the commencement of the lease. When the tenant vacates the apartment, the landlord inspects for waste. If the apartment has been damaged, the landlord will use part or all of the deposit for repairs. If the damage exceeds the deposit, however, the landlord may file an action seeking damages for the repairs not covered by the deposit.

Permissive waste is an injury caused by an omission, rather than an affirmative act, on the part of the tenant. This type of waste might occur, for example, if a tenant permits a house to fall into disrepair by not making reasonable maintenance repairs.

Ameliorating waste is an alteration in the physical characteristics of the premises by an unauthorized act of the tenant that increases the value of the property. For example, a tenant might make improvements that increase the value of the property, such as remodeling a bathroom. Generally, a tenant is not held liable if she commits this type of waste.

Equitable waste is a harm to the reversionary interest in land that is inconsistent with fruitful use. This cause of action is recognized only by courts of equity and is not regarded as legal waste in courts of law. For example, if the life tenant begins to cut down immature trees, the remainderperson, who will someday take possession of the property, may file an action in equity seeking an injunction to stop the cutting. The remainderperson would argue that the cutting imperils the productive use of the land in the future, because the value of the land after the immature trees have been cut would be decreased.

In an action for waste, a plaintiff commonly will seek damages for acts that have already occurred and request an injunction against future acts. A court will order an injunction if it finds that irreparable harm will occur and that the legal remedy would be inadequate, unless otherwise provided by statute. Certain laws provide for temporary relief if acts of waste are either threatened or committed.

The ordinary measure of damages for waste is the diminution in value of the property to the nonpossessor as a result of the acts of the possessor. This is frequently difficult to measure, particularly in situations where a significant period of time will elapse before the plaintiff is entitled to actual possession.

cross-references

Landlord and Tenant; Life Estate.

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waste

waste / wāst/ • v. 1. [tr.] use or expend carelessly, extravagantly, or to no purpose: we can't afford to waste electricity I don't use the car, so why should I waste precious money on it? ∎  (usu. be wasted on) bestow or expend on an unappreciative recipient: her small talk was wasted on this guest. ∎  (usu. be wasted) fail to make full or good use of: we're wasted in this job. 2. [intr.] (of a person or a part of the body) become progressively weaker and more emaciated: she was dying of AIDS, visibly wasting away| [as adj.] (wasting) a wasting disease. ∎  [tr.] archaic cause to do this: these symptoms wasted the patients very much. 3. [tr.] poetic/lit. devastate or ruin (a place): he seized their cattle and wasted their country. ∎ inf. kill or severely injure (someone): I saw them waste the guy I worked for. 4. [intr.] poetic/lit. (of time) pass away; be spent: the years were wasting. • adj. 1. (of a material, substance, or byproduct) eliminated or discarded as no longer useful or required after the completion of a process: ensure that waste materials are disposed of responsibly | plants produce oxygen as a waste product. 2. (of an area of land, typically in a city or town) not used, cultivated, or built on: a patch of waste ground. • n. 1. an act or instance of using or expending something carelessly, extravagantly, or to no purpose: it's a waste of time trying to argue with him | they had learned to avoid waste. ∎ archaic the gradual loss or diminution of something: he was pale and weak from waste of blood. 2. material that is not wanted; the unusable remains or byproducts of something: bodily waste | (wastes) hazardous industrial wastes. 3. (usu. wastes) a large area of barren, typically uninhabited land: the icy wastes of the Antarctic. 4. Law damage to an estate caused by an act or by neglect, esp. by a life-tenant. PHRASES: go to waste be unused or expended to no purpose.lay waste to (or lay something (to) waste) completely destroy: a land laid waste by war.waste one's breathsee breath.waste wordssee word.

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waste

waste
A. desert land XII;

B. action of wasting XIII;

C. waste matter XV. — ONF. wast(e), var. of OF. guast(e), gast(e), partly repr. L. vāstum, n. of vāstus waste, desert, partly f. waster vb.
So waste adj. uncultivated, barren XIII; superfluous, refuse XV. — ONF. wast, var. of g(u)ast :- Rom. *wasto, repr. (with infl. from Frankish *wōsti) L. vāstus. waste vb. devastate, consume by loss, decay, etc. XIII; consume or expend uselessly XIV. — ONF. waster, var. of g(u)aster :- Rom. *wastāre, for L. vāstare. Hence wasteful causing devastation XIV; extravagant XV. waster (-ER1) XIV.

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"waste." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. 16 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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waste

waste waste not, want not proverbial saying, late 18th century, advising against being wasteful with one's resources; want is used to mean either ‘lack’ or ‘desire’. (Compare wilful waste makes woeful want.)

See also haste makes waste, wilful waste makes woeful want.

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"waste." The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. . Encyclopedia.com. 16 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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waste

waste
1.. An area of unenclosed land used for common pasture.

2. Unlicensed felling of trees.

3.. Over-exploitation of woodland or wood-pasture or the failure to enclose coppice after felling, resulting in stock being allowed to graze to the detriment of the undergrowth.

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"waste." A Dictionary of Plant Sciences. . Encyclopedia.com. 16 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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waste

waste An area of unenclosed land used for common pasture.

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"waste." A Dictionary of Ecology. . Encyclopedia.com. 16 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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"waste." A Dictionary of Ecology. . Retrieved August 16, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/waste

waste

waste: see solid waste.

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"waste." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 16 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"waste." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 16, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/waste

"waste." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved August 16, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/waste

waste

wastebarefaced, baste, boldfaced, chaste, haste, lambaste, paste, po-faced, red-faced, self-faced, shamefaced, smooth-faced, strait-laced, taste, unplaced, untraced, waist, waste •toothpaste • foretaste • aftertaste •shirtwaist

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"waste." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 16 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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