Today Thaleia from Something 2 Offer has a very eye-opening post on visiting a solid waste facility with her children. This is such a tangible way to understand how much trash we produce as individuals and a memorable way to teach children to reduce their own consumption.
A couple of years ago our homeschool group scheduled a trip the a Solid Waste District. Yes, it does seem a little strange to add Solid Waste Management Facility to our list of field trip ideas, but we did learn some things. We learned that lots and lots of things become trash that may not need to be trash. Excess packaging on food items can be reduced. Furniture and household equipment can be donated so others may use it within their classroom or non-profit organization.
Crazy amounts of trash come through this facility every day adding up to a lot of trash throughout the year. Here’s the actual statistics from MCSWD report:
Residential and commercial waste generation was 675,233 tons
including 570,705 tons landfilled (see Table III-1) and 104,528 tons recycled, including composting (see Table IV-5). Based on the District population, this is 6.95 pounds per person per day of
residential/commercial waste generation.
Industrial waste generation was 304,361 tons. This includes
120,418 tons landfilled (see Table III-1) and 183,943 tons recycled (see Table IV-6). Based on the District population, this is 3.13 pounds per person per day of industrial waste generation.
Residential/commercial waste reduction that occurred in the District during the reference year is summarized in Table IV-5. The residential/commercial waste reduction includes residential
recycling activities such as curbside and drop-off collection; District sponsored special collection events, such as the household hazardous waste collection and electronics collection; commercial recycling completed by commercial entities operating within the District; and composting.
Wow, almost 7 pounds or trash and 3 pounds of industrial waste per day! That is a lot of trash that’s headed to the landfill! This particular facility offers many ways to recycle. One way is through the Material Reuse Facility which allows residents the chance to drop off larger items that teachers and non-profits may shop at for free. Teachers can come to MCMRF and pick out FREE items and materials for their classrooms. Whether it is art supplies, student incentives, file cabinets, bookshelves, or even computers, we may have what you need for FREE!
Here’s a picture of a local landfill for items that cannot be recycled or reused:
The following are resources that may help you and your family in learning about recycling, composting, litter, solid waste, and other green initiatives.
Web Links for Kids
Head over to Something 2 Offer for a free Subscriber Freebie Earth Day Printable!
Looking for even more great ideas for activities and education on Earth Day and Sustainability? Don’t forget to look through the Ultimate Earth Day Guide.
Kara is an author, wife, and mother of 3 children living in Boston, MA. She has her degree in Secondary Education & Adolescent Childhood Development and is passionate about connecting with and even helping other parents on their journey to raise awesome kids!