The Open Door Web Site
Problems and Concerns caused by Human Influences on the Environment Index
PROBLEMS AND CONCERNS CAUSED BY HUMAN INFLUENCES ON THE ENVIRONMENT
Santiago, Chile in 1990
The millions of people living in large cities produce a lot of waste. Some of this waste is biodegradable. This means it can be broken down by decomposers, such as bacteria. Other types of waste, including some plastics and metals, cannot be decomposed.
Canal Saint Martin, Paris
Some cities burn waste. The energy released is used to heat homes in the area of the incinerator. Burning waste, however, releases carbon dioxide and other pollutant gases into the atmosphere. This is why incinerators have tall chimneys to make sure that these gases are released at height, away from the population at ground level.
Other cities have waste dumps on their outskirts. The waste is piled up using bulldozers. These dumps attract rats and other vermin, as well as birds. These can carry disease into the cities.
European cities have introduced two types of waste bins. The green bins are for waste paper which can be recycled.
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