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Generation and Recovery of Selected Materials in Municipal



The material flows methodology is utilized to generate the estimates above. Th
crucial first step is making estimates of the generation of the materials and
products in MSW.

Data on domestic production of materials and products were compiled
using published data series. U.S. Department of Commerce sources were used
where available, but in several instances more detailed information on
production of goods by end use is available from trade associations. The goal
obtain a consistent historical data series for each product and/or material.

The domestic production numbers were then adjusted for converting or
fabrication scrap generated in the production processes. Examples of these kin
of scrap would be clippings from plants that make boxes from paperboard, glass
scrap (cullet) generated in a glass bottle plant, or plastic scrap from a fabr
plastic consumer products. This scrap typically has a high value because it is
clean and readily identifiable, and it is almost always recovered and recycled
within the industry that generated it. Thus, converting/fabrication scrap is n
counted as part of the postconsumer recovery of waste.

In some instances imports and exports of products are a significant part of
MSW, and adjustments were made to account for this.

Various adjustments were made to account for diversions from MSW.
Some consumer products are permanently diverted from the municipal waste
stream because of the way they are used. For example, some paperboard is used
in building materials, which are not counted as MSW. Another example of
diversion is toilet tissue, which is disposed in sewer systems rather than
becoming MSW.

In other instances, products are temporarily diverted from the municipal
waste stream. For example, textiles reused as rags are assumed to enter the wa
stream the same year the textiles are initially discarded.

Some products (e.g., newspapers and packaging) normally have a very
short lifetime; these products are assumed to be discarded in the same year th
are produced. In other instances (e.g., furniture and appliances), products ha
relatively long lifetimes. Data on average product lifetimes are used to adjus
data series to account for this.
The result of these estimates and calculations is a material-by-material and
product-by-product estimate of MSW generation, recovery, and discards.

Municipal solid waste ( MSW) includes wastes such as durable goods, nondurable
containers and packaging, food scraps, yard trimmings, and miscellaneous inorg
residential, commercial, institutional, and industrial sources. Examples of wa
categories include appliances, automobile tires, newspapers, clothing, boxes,
tableware, office and classroom paper, wood pallets, and cafeteria wastes. MSW
wastes from other sources, such as construction and demolition debris, automob
municipal sludges, combustion ash, and industrial process wastes that might al
municipal waste landfills or incinerators.

Source reduction activities reduce the amount or toxicity of wastes before the
municipal solid waste management system (see Generation). Reuse is a source re
involving the recovery or reapplication of a package, used product, or materia
retains its original form or identity. Reuse of products such as refillable gl
plastic food storage containers, or refurbished wood pallets are examples of s
Generation refers to the amount (weight or volume) of materials and products t
waste stream before recycling (including composting), landfilling, or combusti

Recovery of materials means removing MSW from the waste stream for the purpose
(including composting). Recovery for recycling as defined for this report incl
postconsumer recovered materials plus net exports of the materials. Recovery o
includes diverting yard trimmings from disposal to a composting facility. For
recovery for uses such as highway construction or insulation is considered rec
materials used in remanufacturing processes.

Combustion includes combustion of mixed MSW, fuel prepared from MSW, or a sepa
component of MSW (such as rubber tires), with or without energy recovery.

Discards include the municipal solid waste remaining after recycling (includin
These discards are usually combusted or disposed of in landfills, although som
stored, or disposed on site, particularly in rural areas.
e the estimates above. The
ion of the materials and

 were compiled
rce sources were used
ed information on
e associations. The goal is to
roduct and/or material.

r converting or
es. Examples of these kinds
es from paperboard, glass
plastic scrap from a fabricator of
 high value because it is
ys recovered and recycled
ng/fabrication scrap is not

 a significant part of

ns from MSW.
the municipal waste
 some paperboard is used
Another example of
r systems rather than

 from the municipal
e assumed to enter the waste

ly have a very
arded in the same year they
 appliances), products have
fetimes are used to adjust the
aterial-by-material and
ry, and discards.

durable goods, nondurable goods,
, and miscellaneous inorganic wastes from
l sources. Examples of waste from these
papers, clothing, boxes, disposable
and cafeteria wastes. MSW does not include
emolition debris, automobile bodies,
cess wastes that might also be disposed in

city of wastes before they enter the
on). Reuse is a source reduction activity
 used product, or material in a manner that
cts such as refillable glass bottles, reusable
pallets are examples of source reduction.
 materials and products that enter the
 landfilling, or combustion takes place.

te stream for the purpose of recycling
ined for this report includes purchases of
the materials. Recovery of yard trimmings
composting facility. For some materials,
ulation is considered recovery along with

pared from MSW, or a separated
out energy recovery.

after recycling (including composting).
n landfills, although some MSW is littered,
Table 364. Generation and Recovery of Selected Materials in Municipal Solid Wast

[In millions of tons (151.6 represents 151,600,000), except as indicated.
Covers post-consumer residential and commercial solid wastes which comprise the
major portion of typical municipal collections. Excludes mining, agricultural an
processing, demolition and construction wastes, sewage sludge, and junked autos
equipment wastes. Based on material-flows estimating procedure and
wet weight as generated]

           Item and material                 1980      1990      1995

    Waste generated, total                  151.6     205.2     211.4

Paper and paperboard                         55.2      72.7      81.7
Ferrous metals                               12.6      12.6      11.6
Aluminum                                      1.7       2.8       3.0
Other nonferrous metals                       1.2       1.1       1.3
Glass                                        15.1      13.1      12.8
Plastics                                      6.8      17.1      18.9
Yard waste                                   27.5      35.0      29.7
Other wastes                                 31.5      50.7      52.4

    Materials recovered, total               14.5      33.2      54.9

Paper and paperboard                         11.9      20.2      32.7
Ferrous metals                                0.4       2.2       4.1
Aluminum                                      0.3       1.0       0.9
Other nonferrous metals                       0.5       0.7       0.8
Glass                                         0.8       2.6       3.1
Plastics                                      0.0       0.4       1.0
Yard waste                                    0.0       4.2       9.0
Other wastes                                  0.6       1.8       3.2

  Percent of generation recovered, total      9.6      16.2      26.0

Paper and paperboard                         21.6      27.8      40.0
Ferrous metals                                3.2      17.5      35.3
Aluminum                                     17.6      35.7      30.0
Other nonferrous metals                      41.7      63.6      61.5
Glass                                         5.3      19.8      24.2
Plastics                                      0.0       2.3       5.3
Yard waste                                    0.0      12.0      30.3
Other wastes                                  1.9       3.6       6.1

Source: Franklin Associates, a Division of ERG, Prairie Village, KS,
Municipal Solid Waste Generation, Recycling, and Disposal in the United States:
Facts and Figures for 2003.
Prepared for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. See also
cipal Solid Waste: 1980 to 2003

ch comprise the
 agricultural and industrial
nd junked autos and obsolete

          2000      2001        2002    2003

         234.0     231.2       235.5   236.2

          87.7      82.7        84.2    83.1
          13.5      13.5        13.6    14.0
           3.1       3.2         3.2     3.2
           1.6       1.6         1.6     1.6
          12.6      12.6        12.8    12.5
          24.7      25.3        26.3    26.7
          27.7      28.0        28.3    28.6
          63.1      64.4        65.5    66.5

          68.9      69.3        70.5    72.3

          37.6      37.7        38.3    40.0
           4.6       4.6         4.9     5.1
           0.9       0.8         0.8     0.7
           1.1       1.1         1.1     1.1
           2.7       2.4         2.5     2.4
           1.4       1.4         1.4     1.4
          15.8      15.8        16.0    16.1
           4.9       5.6         5.6     5.6

          29.4      30.0        29.9    30.6

          42.8      45.6        45.5    48.1
          34.1      34.1        36.0    36.4
          28.7      25.0        23.8    21.4
          67.9      67.5        67.5    66.7
          21.4      19.0        19.1    18.8
           5.5       5.5         5.2     5.2
          57.0      56.4        56.5    56.3
           7.8       8.6         8.6     8.5

 United States:

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