From: Tex Dworkin, Care2, More from this Affiliate
Published September 23, 2015 09:09 AM

Just how much waste are Americans creating?

A new Yale-led study reveals that we’re disposing of more than twice as much solid waste as we thought we were here in the good ol’ U.S. of A.

Published on Sept. 21 in the Nature Climate Change journal and co-authored by Yale professor Julie Zimmerman and University of Florida professor Timothy G. Townsend, this study found that based on landfill measurements instead of government estimates, analysis of figures revealed that America tosses five pounds of trash per person per day.

Let that soak in for a moment. Five pounds of garbage. Per day. Per person. But it gets better, and by better, I mean worse.

According to the study, 262 million tons of municipal solid waste was disposed of in the United States in 2012 –a 115 percent increase over the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) estimate of 122 million tons for the same year. The new estimate also surpasses the World Bank’s projections of municipal solid waste generation for 2025.

So why is there such a discrepancy in the quantity of disposed of waste between what the federal government estimates vs. what this new study claims? Jon Powell, a Ph.D. student in Yale’s Department of Chemical & Environmental Engineering and lead author of the paper explains, “A key difference is in the methodology.”

Garbage truck image via Shutterstock.

Read more at ENN Affiliate, Care2.

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