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The Process: A Look at the System

The Process:  A Look at the System

Let's look at how municipal solid waste is handled at the Arnold O. Chantland Resource Recovery Plant.

The refuse of an entire county is deposited in a room with a 16,000 square foot concrete floor (called the "tipping floor") and a ceiling 30 feet high.  All municipal solid waste is accepted with the exception of demolition materials, animal carcasses, hazardous products, and yard waste.  The waste is sorted on the tipping floor for processing in the following ways:

Garbage Truck Dumping

  • Garbage trucks drive onto a scale in the tipping floor; the driver steps out of the truck and runs their card through a reader, which automatically subtracts the weight of the empty vehicle from the total weight on the scale.  The resulting figure is the weight of the refuse.  This number is used to determine the tonnage of refuse that must be processed.
  • Refuse from cars and pickups is tossed over a concrete wall onto the tipping floor.
  • Items such as furniture, mattresses, and rolls of carpeting are pulled out and set aside for landfilling.  These bulky materials can cause damage to equipment if processed.
  • Bulky metal items and motorized appliances are set aside and, along with processed metal, are sold to area scrap dealers for recycling.
  • Lead acid batteries are set aside and sold to a local recycler.
  • Used motor oil is poured into storage tanks and later collected by a licensed collector.

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