Is It Ok to Burn Your Trash in the Backyard Can?

Open burning of trash is the lead dominant source of dioxins in the United States environment. This is according to a United States Dioxin Reassessment report that sought environmentally friendly trash disposal. So would it be Ok to burn trash in the backyard can?

Burning trash in the backyard can is not ok. Because, most household trash today consists of plastics, papers, and wood containing lots of chemicals and ink treatments. So burning them releases toxic gases harmful to human, animal, and plant life in the neighborhood.

I have read the UK’s Guardian magazine on the state of the environment in the world and conducted thorough research on the same. So reading ahead you are sure to find numerous reasons why burning trash in the backyard is not a good idea. You don’t want to miss this.

 Is It Better to Throw Out Your Trash or Burn It?

Homeowners may find it difficult to determine their best method of disposing of trash amidst such confusion. It may seem more convenient to burn the plastics, woodworks, and office papers from your backyard, than spending on their disposal. But it would be much better to follow methods that will not risk your health or that of your family members.

So despite most landfill sites having limited space, burning trash at home to reduce the levels in those sites is highly discouraged; because of the toxins involved in such materials. However, different authorities approve of burning but only if it is done in pollution-controlled spaces.

On the other hand, there is no point in throwing away trash when our world is full of reusable items. However, what do you do after you squeeze all the life out of some disposable item? Either way, throwing trash, or burying it in the backyard is not an option that would go well with environmental authorities.

Is It OK to Burn Your Trash In the Backyard?

The need for a clean environment creates a tight line between burning trash at home and throwing it away. At the same time, some governments’ directives on piling household trash and sending it to landfill sites contrast with those from environmental organizations warning of piling garbage.

 The reports might encourage loyal residents to burn garbage instead of bringing it to community disposal sites. Despite appearing as the best option, household trash today is full of papers and plastics covered with chemical coatings and ink treatments.  

If burned, the smoke from such trash may cause health effects to animals, as well as people nearby. Moreover, plant life too may be adversely affected through the chemicals in the air and the residue ash on the soil.

However, the amount of toxins released in the air is determined by the intensity and temperature of the fire used in the burning process. Since fires lit at home produce a lot of smoke and throws of particles as a result of the insufficient amount of oxygen supplied.

Gases Released by Burning Trash

Backyard burning of trash releases styrene, benzene, formaldehyde, and polychlorinated biphenyls gases into the air. This also includes other toxic chemicals including chlorinated biphenyls, lead, and mercury.

A few community zones have pollution control schemes that are designed to minimize the number of gases released into the air when burning trash. These places are, however, becoming less common as a result of recent measures adopted by governments to promote the recycling of materials.

Health Problems Associated With Burning Trash

One of the reasons why this activity poses a high health risk is that the cans are mostly located on the ground level, where people carry out their daily lives. Thus, this would mean that once the gases are released, they won’t go higher than they have already been, they would instead circulate within the skin and air breathed in by people, animals, and plants too.

Occasionally, items from the trash may be thrown on the grass, where they may settle after rain. These chemicals end up in the bodies of animals, such as cows, that eat the grass. Eventually, the milk from such cattle will end up in the hands of people who will be exposed, too, to such effects.

Among the health effects of inhaling toxic chemicals are:

Endocrine Disrupter:-  This is a chemical reaction causing hormonal interference in the reproductive system of both animals and human beings. In line with this is also Dioxin, a health risk especially harmful for pregnant women, and can cause cancer-related problems.

A lot of these gases and chemicals are extremely dangerous to neighbors and family members with sensitive respiratory systems, as well as young children and the elderly. For instance, wood smoke contains wood tars, gases, and soot that contain chemicals like volatile organic compounds and carbon monoxide. 

Moreover, when wood particles burn, they don’t stay in the same area, they move and can cause additional respiratory infections, such as asthma and acute bronchitis.

What Are the Alternatives for Burning Trash?

  • Recycling Recyclable Materials

Before settling for disposing of the trash from your house, you need to rummage through and separate plastic, glass, paper, and metal items in your trash. From this, you can contact your local recycling representatives to pick off the re-usable items from your house. 

  • Contact Landfill Services

There is at least one trash collection service for every neighborhood. You may contact them to arrange for them to pick up your no longer recyclable trash. They will check through the trash in your house and damp it accordingly.

  • Donations of Unneeded Items

Some households consider items that are no longer in use to be trash. As opposed to throwing them away, you may want to repurpose or donate them to other members of the community through your local donation center.

  • Decomposition by Composting

A good portion of household materials and food waste may be buried in this method, provided that it is allowed by the relevant authorities. It must be important for your local authorities to know where and how composting can be done. However, these require careful consideration when utilized, since other materials are highly toxic, while others will not decompose even after composting. Therefore, it is necessary to seek out the authorities’ assistance before going along this path.

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