Virginia DEQ issues annual report on solid waste management
The report provides the amount of solid waste managed in 2020, as well as the types and sources of solid waste generated outside the Commonwealth. Solid waste includes municipal solid waste, construction and demolition debris, industrial waste, vegetative and yard waste, and other types of garbage.
During 2020, Virginia facilities received a total of 22.5 million tons of solid waste, a slight decrease of approximately 24,800 tons from 2019. The total amount from outside Virginia also decreased by 1.9 percent (or 108,000 tons). Approximately 72 percent is sent to landfills, 12 percent is incinerated and seven percent recycled.
“We take waste management very seriously,” said DEQ Director David Paylor. “The annual report about the origin and type of wastes handled by Virginia’s facilities is an important tool for comprehensive management of solid wastes. We compile the report to help authorities plan for the future and to set statewide goals such as Governor Ralph Northam’s bold executive order to reduce plastic pollution and waste.”
“Facilities must submit their information by March 31 each year,” said Land Protection Division Director Kathryn Perszyk. “This year 201 facilities reported with the majority using DEQ’s online reporting tool.”
Other findings of the report include:
- Approximately three percent of the waste was disposed by mulching or composting.
- Five jurisdictions accounted for 97 percent of all waste received from out-of-state sources: Maryland, New York, New Jersey, Washington, D.C. and North Carolina.
- Solid wastes received at construction and demolition debris landfills increased by 13 percent and by nearly 1.3 percent at industrial landfills.