Data & Policy Projects & Reports

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Data & Policy Reports

This report summarizes the use of anaerobic digestion (AD) to manage MSW organics in the United States, and includes analysis of original data based on a comprehensive nationwide facility survey conducted by EREF. More

The Environmental Research and Education Foundation (EREF) maintains a database of 1,637 active Subtitle D MSW landfills across the U.S.  This database was used to develop a sample consisting of nearly 300 landfills that were categorized as large, medium and small. Landfill owners in this sample where then contacted and asked to provide gate rate information on their tip fees. More

Current estimates of MSW generation, recovery and disposal in the U.S. vary greatly. EREF has used a facility-based approach in each state to investigate the amount of MSW materials generated in 2010 and 2013. More

Using a first-of-its-kind Life-Cycle Assessment model of biofuel production using MSW, this report includes an assessment of the environmental impacts associated with MSW conversion via landfill gas-to-energy, waste-to-energy, and gasification/Fischer-Tropsch. More

Current Data & Policy Projects

The School Cafeteria Discards Assessment Project (SCrAP) was developed by the Environmental Research and Education Foundation (EREF) - in collaboration with the School Nutrition Foundation and World Wildlife Fund - to quantify both food waste and related wastes (eg. recyclables, to landfill) generated in cafeterias at K-12 schools nationally. More

Management of leachate generated by municipal solid waste (MSW) landfills poses significant challenges to landfill operators. The goal of this project is to collect data from landfills across the U.S. that includes leachate quantity and quality, management practices (e.g., on-site and off-site treatment). More

This analysis examines the waste management sustainability policies set by state/local agencies, such as recycling and diversion goals. More

Needlestick injuries are a serious risk to waste industry workers, especially in MRFs where sorting recyclables on picking lines and similar activities can put employees in contact with sharps and, as a result, blood borne pathogens. The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) and the Environmental Research & Education Foundation (EREF) are conducting a joint research project to determine and address the issue of needlestick injuries at Material Recovery Facilities (MRFs) in the United States and Canada. More 

Improved tracking techniques, such as RFID, allow for analyses not previously possible. The objectives of this study are to develop a methodology to accurately calculate set-out and mass participation rates for micro-geographic units (e.g. census tracts, blocks). More 

Using EREF’s database of MSW landfills, landfill gas collection and management practices are being inventoried. More 

This project examines how Zero Waste and Zero Landfill are defined by the US EPA, individual states and other environmental organizations. An inventory of Zero Waste goal and policies will also be developed. More 

The goal of this project is to develop a national inventory of recycling data related to the on-site recovery of materials in various sectors, the processes used to manage these materials and policy influences in material management decisions. More 

To better understand the factors contributing to industry fatalities, an inventory of incidences and surrounding factors will provide insight and inform safety efforts (in partnership with NWRA). More 

While waste composition is known to vary geographically, little information exists in a compiled format to directly compare state compositions and aid decision-makers when setting waste-related policies such as recycling and diversion goals. More 

The goal of this project is to compare WTE and non-WTE states and communities in order to identify trends between WTE availability and recycling rate. More