Sustainable waste management is a goal that all societies must strive to maintain. Currently nearly 80% of global wastes are sent to landfill, with a significant amount lacking proper design or containment. The increased attention to environmental impacts of human activities and the increasing demand for energy and materials have resulted in a new perspective on waste streams. Use of waste streams for energy and materials recovery is becoming more prevalent, especially in developed regions of the world, such as Europe, the United States, and Japan. Although currently these efforts have a small impact on waste disposal, use of waste streams to extract value very likely will increase as society becomes more aware of the options available. This review presents an overview of waste management with a focus on following an expanded waste hierarchy to extract value specifically from municipal solid waste streams.


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