Solid Waste in Landfills
1996, the manufacturers who are the members of the PLFC diverted 28,350,000
pounds of EPS packaging or nearly 2/3 of all EPS packaging made that
year from landfill by recycling it into new EPS packaging (including
molded as well as loose fill). Of that, 10,702,125 pounds were post-consumer
waste, and 17,647,875 were post-industrial waste. That diversion rate
is even larger today.
to 45 million pounds of plastic loose fill are produced each year
in this country. Recycled content of manufactured loose fill averages
following statements are from Franklin Associates, Ltd. (see
supplement, "The Waste That Wasn't") a recognized independent
expert in collecting national municipal solid waste data for the EPA
and many states throughout the United States:
of loose fill polystyrene reduced virgin polystyrene demand by
22 million pounds in 1994 alone."
30 percent of all loose fill or "peanuts"
mailing services, the reuse rate is as high as 50 percent."
to 1988, there was essentially no recovery of post-consumer polystyrene
for recycling. In 1994, just six years later, more than 34 million
pounds of polystyrene were recycled."
percentage of post-consumer polystyrene diverted from landfills
has risen from 0.8% in 1974 to 10.4% in 1994."
polystyrene products have been source reduced 9% since 1974
this means that 9% less polystyrene was used to manufacture the
same amount of products.
1974 and 1994, the amount of polystyrene packaging and disposals
diverted through source reduction increased more than 20-fold,
eliminating more than 800,000 tons of polystyrene generation over
the 20-year period."
solid waste savings are less easily measured:
product breakage from good packaging is itself a source of solid
waste reduction. In packaging stress studies, plastic loose fill
typically outperforms other void fills.
Because plastic loose fill is approximately 99.6% air, and because
less-breakage leads to fewer replacements, there are savings of
trucking fuel consumption.
PLFC members voluntarily eliminated the use of ozone-depleting freon
(CFCs) in the late 80's.
Click here for more information about EPS loose
fill and landfills.