Waste comprises a mixture of many different materials, including organic, paper, plastic, metal, timber and potentially hazardous substances. Waste can be generated at different times during a product’s life cycle:
Waste can represent an inefficient use of resources, or a loss of resources. Many potentially reusable and recyclable materials such as paper, plastic, organic waste, glass and metal, are disposed of to landfills. Some forms of waste produce greenhouse gases and others can have significant health impacts on humans and animals. Waste can also pollute our waterways, air and land if it is not adequately managed.
The national environmental indicator for solid waste disposal provides information on:
The solid waste disposal indicator reports on landfills that receive municipal, industrial and hazardous waste. It does not report on other waste disposal facilities, for example waste disposed of to cleanfills or to landfills that accept only industrial and/or hazardous waste, incinerated waste or legacy waste (eg, stockpiled tyres or agrichemicals).
Last updated:9 January 2013