Managing Waste in Disasters

Waste management is the process of controlling the production, storage, collection, transportation and disposal of solid waste. Waste management is the goal of ensuring that solid waste storage, transportation, treatment, or disposal is safe, efficient, and economically viable.

Rubbish Clearance Garbage Pick-up

Rubbish clearance refers to the removal of rubbish from homes and businesses. It is done in a way that is safe for the environment and human health. It is labor-intensive. A driver and one or more loaders take the garbage from the homes or businesses to the collection vehicle. They then transport it to the landfill.

Households and businesses need to dispose of their rubbish in a container. They should not place anything in the bin that is hazardous to humans or the environment, such as paint, motor oil, and batteries.

The collection of residential refuse takes place weekly. It can be collected by either a public employee, or private contractors. Residents and businesses will need to put their rubbish at the curb the day before collection,,

Transfer stations

A transfer station is where refuse from multiple collection vehicles can be combined into one vehicle for transport to a regional processing location or disposal site. This type is often done using a tractor trailer unit, an open-top trailer, and a closed compactor-type truck.

Composting and digestion

This is a method of managing waste that uses biological processes to break down organic matter (such food scraps, paper, and wood) and other non-hazardous materials. This method of recycling organic material is less harmful than incineration or landfilling and can also be used to generate electricity and heat.


Some cities or towns have their own dumpsites, while others rely on regional or state dumpsites. In general, landfills are more costly to operate and require more land.


Youngs Waste Clearance is a popular waste disposal method that can be used on a large and small scale. It is an environmentally friendly waste disposal method but can also contribute to climate change.

Resource recovery

Some materials, like glass and metals can be recycled into new products, or other raw materials. A large portion of the waste generated in the United States can be diverted from the municipal stream and used in other industries, like paper manufacture or the manufacturing of plastics.

Many natural disasters create large quantities of waste and debris. The amount of waste that is generated during a disaster can prove to be too much for both governments and private companies. It can also have serious environmental impacts. The EPA’s research team creates tools and information that help states, local governments as well as tribes and territories to manage the waste from disasters.

The EPA research group also offers guidance on evaluating the impacts of natural disasters, and on how to manage waste following them. This includes assessing how environmental hazards like radiation and toxic chemicals affect waste management and public safety.

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