When you visualize a landfill, odds are you think of mound and mounts of trash. But what you probably don’t think of is the engineering that it takes to design, create, and maintain landfills. For this reason and many more engineers are not just garbage men; they are leading developers in changing how landfills operate. Landfills are emitting gas that consists of approximately 50% methane, 42% carbon dioxide, 7% nitrogen and 1% oxygen compounds. Engineers have learned to use these gases and turn them into local and renewable energy sources which are offsetting the need for non-renewable ones such as oil, coal, and gas.
What is an eye sore to most passer-by drivers is the future of electricity to engineers. Thousands of engineers dedicating countless hours have redesigned numerous landfill sites into a substantial green energy source. Nationwide, landfills are powering everything from their own small on-site buildings to directing those gasses to an electric generator capable of powering the equivalent of a small city. These engineering marvels are just the beginning to the possibilities that landfills hold. What others view as just mounds of waste, engineers are able to harness and distribute a cheaper method of power into your homes.
If you stop and think about it, engineers are the ultimate garbage men from start to finish. They design the sites and plot the progress of their projects with the idea of helping their local community as well as all of America by using waste to keep your lights on. So the next time you come home and turn on a light or stop off at a gas station to fill your tank, just think that perhaps if not now but one day engineers will be the ones responsible for the electricity in your homes or replacing the fuel in your car, all thanks to their contributions to landfill improvements. They are engineering our way to the future, one piece of trash at a time.