Updated 3/11/11

In Podcast #42 the Trekkers take you to a landfill in the Piedmont region of Virginia.  Find out what happens to your trash after you throw it in the garbage, see where all those Christmas trees go after the holidays, discover how trash is turned into electricity, and learn what you can do to reduce the amount of garbage you send to the landfill. It’s an exciting place with lots to explore! You’ll even see that our national bird, the bald eagle, likes hanging out at the landfill.  So come on, let’s go trekkin’!

A landfill is different than a dump.  A dump is just a place where garbage is tossed into a pile.  Since it is out in the open, it can stink and pollute the air, land, and water.  Many people think a landfill and a dump are the same. However, if you visit a landfill you will see very little trash and there is hardly any smell.  This is because a landfill has several important features that protect the environment.  Landfills are lined with clay and special plastics to keep the garbage from seeping into the soil and water.  Each day’s trash is compacted so it takes up less space, and then it is buried.  When a landfill is full, it looks just like a grassy hill and can even be turned into a park, like Virginia’s famous Mount Trashmore (the Trekker’s need to make a podcast there!)

SOL Correlation:

K.10 The student will investigate and understand that materials can be reused, recycled, and conserved.  Key concepts include

a) materials and objects can be used over and over again;

b) everyday materials can be recycled;

1.8 The student will investigate and understand that natural resources are limited.  Key concepts include

c) recycling, reusing, and reducing consumption of natural resources.

3.10 The student will investigate and understand that natural events and human influences can affect the survival of species.  Key concepts include

b) the effects of human activity on the quality of air, water, and habitat;

d) conservation and resource renewal.

3.11 The student will investigate and understand different sources of energy. Key concepts include

d) renewable and nonrenewable energy resources.

5.7 The student will investigate and understand how the Earth’s surface is constantly changing. Key concepts include 

f) human impact.

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Piedmont Region