One scholar, A. Clark Wiseman of Spokane's Gonzaga University, calculated that, at the current rate of solid waste generation, the nation's entire solid waste for the next 1,000 years could be buried in a single landfill 100 yards high and 35 miles square.
We are not running out of land for landfills. We have run into the lie that they are unsafe. The truth is that landfills have been routinely converted into valuable property once filled. In California there are a number of golf courses that were former landfills. In New Jersey, there are malls and corporate campuses.
In July of last year, New York City suspended the collection of plastic and beverage cartons for a year and the collection of glass for two years. Said the Mayor, "This temporary suspension will save the City an estimated $40 million." Now do the math. If New York can save $40 million by not requiring recycling, imagine the billions that could be saved by cities and suburbs coast to coast? You could renovate every school in America with those funds.
According to the Competitive Enterprise Institute, 60 percent of landfills pose a 1 in a billion risk of causing cancer, while only 17 percent pose a 1 in a million risk.
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