Let’s face it; landfills are awful. They’re eyesores, they smell terrible, they attract vermin, and they take up valuable space. Beyond these obvious traits, landfills are one of the chief sources of environmental degradation on this planet for many reasons. It would be impossible, in fact, for us to fully cover all of the negative effects of landfills in a single blog post. Let’s look at the two biggest reasons why landfills are so toxic and how REUZEit’s mission can help reduce landfill waste.
How Landfills Affect Soil
It’s safe to say that just about everything that can be thrown away ends up in landfills. And it’s also safe to say that most people don’t really think too much about the chemical makeup of their trash. When waste breaks down, the toxins within seep directly into the ground. Even the most innocuous items – a child’s teddy bear or an old reclining chair – contain toxic compounds that can contaminate the soil.
Even if it didn’t take decades – or longer – for landfill waste to fully decompose, the ground underneath the landfill is rendered permanently toxic. Electronic waste, or e-waste, contributes to this in two ways: electronic devices and lab equipment have a long shelf life, and they contain compounds and elements (cadmium and mercury in particular) that are particularly toxic.
How Landfills Affect Groundwater
One of the most insidious by-products of landfills is a term that most people have never heard of: leachate. Much of the waste that ends up in a landfill will eventually begin breaking down. Precipitation – rain, snow, or even dew and fog – will filter through the decomposing waste and leach into the soil. Eventually, despite efforts to contain it, some of this contaminated water will enter the water table–the top layer of the earth’s groundwater supply).
It’s not hard to see why this is bad. And sadly, e-waste has made it worse; the metals and plastics found in electronic devices, including lab equipment, contain high amounts of heavy metals and chemicals.
Keeping Lab Equipment Out Of Landfills
We’ve noted that e-waste is a major contributor to landfill waste, and the problem is getting worse. But there is a silver lining; much, perhaps even most, of the lab equipment that organizations discard is able to be reused. One of the easiest ways to keep lab equipment out of landfills is by purchasing refurbished and surplus equipment. REUZEit works with our network of labs and companies to purchase surplus equipment, refurbish it so that it’s in perfect working order, and then sell it to other organizations. We’re committed to supporting a circular economy, one that reduces landfill waste by extending the working life of lab equipment. By doing so, we’re part of the global effort to preserve and protect our soil and groundwater. And when you purchase used lab equipment, you’re also making a positive impact.
How REUZEit Can Positively Impact the Earth and Your Business
Investing in laboratory equipment for your scientific research is completely a necessary cost, but it doesn’t have to be an expensive one! Money saved on one product can be used to finance another resource that is just as important to your progress. Harness the technology you need to fuel significant scientific research. Whether you’re searching for innovative chemistry lab equipment or looking to replace broken lab equipment, REUZEit offers low-cost solutions that work as hard as you do. Browse the best surplus and gently used biotech and pharmaceutical equipment on the market! Check out our USA-based store or our European Store to shop discount laboratory equipment.