Waste and trash disposal is an important and complicated issue today. We all know that our environment is in a fragile state, and that one of the contributors to climate change is landfills – these places where all the stuff we acquire and then discard is dumped.
Unfortunately, landfills can cause many environmental problems, ranging from the contamination of soil and water with toxins to the release of greenhouse gases that cause climate change. So, the bottom line to the question of how we can safely dispose of our junk, is to reduce how much stuff we acquire in the first place, and reuse and recycle or donate as many of the no longer wanted items, before tossing them.
Municipal junk pickup services
Every municipality has its own programs and guidelines for waste and trash disposal, and they are usually quite rigorous and detailed, contingent on the many different kinds and dimensions of materials being disposed.
Many local governments offer a free pick-up of furniture or appliances or other household items, which are then sorted and donated to various local charities or recycling ventures. These services, however, have strict rules on the type and size of items that can be picked up, so you need to read up on your local guidelines before you start piling up your junk at the curb.
Generally, this service includes the removal of electronics items – cell and home phones, computers, monitors and cables, TVs and radios, pagers, cameras, etc. A municipal pick-up of these items ensures that they are disposed of safely or recycled and kept out of landfills.
Municipal services may also include a pick-up of residents’ renovation debris and leftovers, such as doors, lumber, countertops, cabinets, roof shingles and drywall. These items, however, need to be left cut down to specific dimensions, and free of such materials as nails, screws or metal corner beads. However, other construction items such as bricks, concrete, cinder blocks, stones, asphalt and soil will not likely be picked up.
Homeowner junk disposal responsibilities
Whatever junk is not picked up by your municipal service has to be delivered by you to a designated depot.
These items include any hazardous materials, such as paints, pesticides, propane tanks, batteries, syringes, used motor oil and many cleaning products, because they contain toxic ingredients. They need to be collected by you, labelled, and delivered to designated depots, where their safe disposal is handled for a fee.
Safe disposal of your junk could be a complicated, time-consuming process. Sorting everything out, measuring, checking each item for compliance with municipal laws for disposal, and delivering items to depots usually located outside of city, does sound like a challenging task, but it’s certainly a small price to pay to be a responsible citizen who is fulfilling his/her role in protecting the environment.
Your other option for a responsible and safe way of disposing of your trash is to hire a full service junk removal company – it is their job to know all the rules and regulations for safe junk disposal in your community, so you can just pile up the rejects, for the pros to sort, load and dispose of it safely.