JUL 23, 2017 9:44 AM PDT

Trash Decomposition Takes Longer Than You Think

WRITTEN BY: Anthony Bouchard


Some of the things we throw away can take an eternity to decompose. While food scraps and organic matter are the quickest to decompose, man-made materials like plastic, Styrofoam, and glass will take longer to decompose than an ordinary piece of trash.

Depending on where some of these materials end up, they can take longer to decompose. For example, trash thrown in our oceans sinks to the seafloor where the lack of oxygen and elemental erosion keeps the trash intact.

Even trash that you throw away correctly can last for extended periods of time before decomposing. In many cases, you won't even live long enough to see the day where some of the trash items you throw away correctly will discompose.

Many of these kinds of materials can be recycled and reused, which keeps them out of our landfills and is far better for the environment. Recyclable materials include cardboard, glass, and plastic, among other things.

Think about the things you throw away before they're hauled off to the landfill and plan for recycling certain things accordingly.

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
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