Eco-Friendly Sweden Burns Trash To Stay Green, So Why Don't We?

May 16, 2015 By Archit Tripathi
America produces roughly 30 percent of the world's waste, a staggering 251 million tons annually as of 2012, and we dump about half of that into landfills where it just rots. Landfills are a festering eyesore and, if not properly managed, they have the potential to leach nasty pollutants into the local soil and water supply. While environmentalists argue (and rightly so) that we should be reducing waste altogether, the sad fact is that waste will still be generated, even if lowered, and it still has to go somewhere.

As this video examines, the Swedes actually burn a significant amount of trash and, combined with recycling, only end up with around 1% of their total waste in landfills. While burning trash in a backyard-bonfire style is definitely not advised, high-tech power plants can actually put that trash to good use, burning it to generate electricity while also removing the nastier pollutants from the resulting smoke.
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