At Cory Riverside Energy, we are proud that our work prevents a significant amount of London’s waste from going to landfill.
But what is landfill and why is it unsustainable as a method to dispose of London’s waste?
Put simply, landfill sites are large, purpose built holes in the ground that have historically been used for burying waste. Waste is brought to the site by vehicle or train, spread out and then compacted to aid decomposition, maximise capacity and stabilise the waste pile.
Sites are engineered to ensure that none of the leachate, which is the liquid that is produced as the waste decomposes, leaks out into the surrounding ground. The leachate is collected and treated. In addition landfill sites produce landfill gas, a mixture of carbon dioxide, methane and water vapour.
Landfill gas is collected through a network of pipes in the site and burnt to generate electricity. Methane is explosive and is around 21 times more potent as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide,
Why is landfill unsustainable to meet London’s waste needs?
- Landfill sites create odour, litter and traffic noise
- The landfill sites used by London are nearly full
- Most landfill sites are out of London so the transport required to take the waste to them increases the carbon footprint of the waste disposal
- The Mayor of London’s planning policies require London to become more self sufficient when managing its waste