Air Pollutants

Yet another type of pollutant produced by landfills—landfill gas—contributes significantly to global warming, according to most experts. Landfill gas is composed of two greenhouse gases responsible for global warming—methane and carbon dioxide. In fact, as the environmental group Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) explains, "Methane, the main gas in landfill emissions, is 25 times more potent in terms of warming potential than CO2 [carbon dioxide] and it's released from landfills across the country as a natural byproduct as waste decomposes."7 And according to the EDF, "Municipal solid waste landfills are the second largest source of human-related methane emissions in the United States, accounting for nearly 23 percent of emissions in 2006."8

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