Dumpster Diver

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MAIN TOPIC OF VIDEO:  Waste Management

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DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

Frame:

  1. What is methane and what is its affect on the atmosphere?
  2. What is composting?
  3. What are examples of electronic waste (e-waste) that we use in our everyday lives?

Focus:

  1. What happens to banana peels thrown into the garbage that eventually end in the landfill?
  2. What happens to batteries in the landfill?
  3. What are the benefits of recycling phones?

Follow-up:

  1. What could you do with food scraps generated in everyday life?
  2. What could you do with old batteries that need to be discarded?
  3. What could you do with e-waste from home?

 

ANSWERS TO DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

Frame:

  1. What is methane and what is its affect on the atmosphere?

Methane is a powerful greenhouse gas, even more efficient at trapping radiation than CO2. Increased levels of greenhouse gases have contributed to global climate change — global rising temperatures. The impact of methane on climate change is over 20 times greater than CO2 over a 100-year period, according to the EPA.

2.  What is composting?

Composting is a biological process that occurs when microscopic organisms break down organic materials (old plant and animal tissues) and make them into rich soil called compost. It’s basically returning nutrients back into the ground and allowing other plants to grow by means of absorbing the nutrients that come from the compost.

3.  What are examples of e-wastes that we use in our everyday lives?

“E-waste” stands for electronic waste, which could be anything electronic that is discarded. It includes our computers, mobile devices, TVs, audio equipment, copiers, fax machines, etc.

Focus:

  1. What happens to banana peels thrown into the garbage that eventually ends in the landfill?

Food wastes in the landfill become a source of methane, a powerful greenhouse gas.

2.  What happens to batteries in the landfill?

Batteries contain metals like lead, lithium ion, alkaline, mercury and nickel, all of which can leak out and end up in our ground water supply. This poisons the water supply and causes diseases for organisms in various food chains, also making humans that consume them ill.

3.  What are the benefits of recycling phones?

By recycling phones, we prevent them from ending up in the landfill and having the heavy metals leak into the water supply for drinking water. Also, we save energy that would have been needed to mine for materials and manufacture new phones. Recycled materials can be used to make new products.

Follow-up:

  1. What could you do with food scraps generated in everyday life?

Food scraps could be composted, except for meat, fat, dairy products, grease, oil, and bones.

2.  What could you do with old batteries that need to be discarded?

Find a place to recycle them. Most hardware stores take them for recycling.

3.  What could you do with e-waste from home?

Reduce, reuse, recycle! Use your electronics for longer periods of time instead of replacing them for new ones frequently. Donate or sell electronics that can still be used. Contact your nearest recycling facility to find out how they handle e-waste.

 

ADDITIONAL TOPICS AND LEARNING EXPERIENCES

How do you start a compost pile to compost food scraps? See the following websites for tips to get started!

 

ADDITIONAL NOTES AND RESOURCES

  • e School Today Waste Management – Click here
  • KQED Education Network, E-Waste: The Digital Dark Side – Click here

 

 

 

Credit: This teacher resource has been adapted from content originally developed by Hannah Sun.

 

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