Enivronmental Science

Task Type: Individual Project   Deliverable Length: 2–3 pages   

Library Research Assignment

Weekly tasks or assignments (Individual or Group Projects) will be due by Monday, and late submissions will be assigned a late penalty in accordance with the late penalty policy found in the syllabus. NOTE: All submission posting times are based on midnight Central Time.

Municipal solid waste (MSW) is all of the garbage, refuse, trash, or junk that gets thrown away from homes and small businesses. All of this MSW is collected and taken away. Have you ever wondered where it goes? In the 1950s and 60s, it went to open dumps. In the 1970s, landfills were established, but there were problems, and today there is new legislation and technology to better manage this waste.

For this assignment, you will review the history of MSW and complete the following:

  • Describe an open dump.
    • Explain the environmental problems.
  • Describe an early landfill.
    • What are the problems associated with early landfills?
    • Include a discussion of leachate, methane, incomplete decomposition, and settling.
  • Describe a modern landfill.
    • What are the differences as compared to early landfills?
    • What improvements have been made?
  • Choose 1 of the following landfills, and explain the innovations being implemented to make the landfill more productive and to reduce its environmental impact:
    • Mariannhill Landfill, South Africa
    • Puente Hills Landfill, California
    • Altamont Landfill, California
    • Tessman Road Landfill, Texas


Please submit your assignment.

Click on Student Expectations to view the expectations for this assignment.

Assignment Grading Rubric

For assistance with your assignment, please use your text, Web resources, and all course materials.

Course Materials

Course Materials


   Phase Resources:

  • 1996 World Food Summit and Plan of Action
    The UN FAO maintains this site to provide information on the 1996 World Food Summit and the Plan of Action that came from that meeting. Follow-up information is also available here.
  • Air Data
    The AirData Web site gives you access to air pollution data for the entire United States.
  • Air Pollution Emissions Overview
    The amounts and types of emissions change every year. These changes are caused by changes in the nation‚s economy, industrial activity, technology improvements, traffic, and by many other factors. Air pollution regulations and emission controls also have an effect. The National Air Pollutant Emission Trends report summarizes long-term trends in emissions of air pollutants and gives in-depth analysis of emissions for the current year. The report also discusses emission evaluation and prediction methodologies.
  • Alliance for Global Sustainability
    The Alliance for Global Sustainability brings together research teams from 4 of the world’s foremost research universities to study large-scale, multidisciplinary environmental problems that are faced by the world’s ecosystems, economies, and societies.
  • American Farmland Trust
    American Farmland Trust works to protect our nation‚s best, most productive farmland while encouraging farmers to improve the stewardship of their land.
  • American Water Works Association
    The American Water Works Association is an international nonprofit scientific and educational society dedicated to the improvement of drinking water quality and supply.
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is recognized as the lead federal agency for protecting the health and safety of people. CDC serves as the national focus for developing and applying disease prevention and control, environmental health, and health promotion and education activities designed to improve the health of the people of the United States.
  • Clean Air Act
    Find the text of this important law on this well-organized page.
  • Desalination
    This is the Australian Government’s document regarding desalination, its future, and its impacts.
  • Effects of the Clean Air Act
    Effects of Title 4 of the Clean Air Act of 1990 on the electric utility industry are constantly updated on this site.
  • Environmental Protection Agency
    This site provides information about current trends for air, land and water protection. It has a large variety of resources.
  • EPA’s National Priorities List (NPL)
    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s National Priorities List (NPL), searchable by state. Information includes the area that is contaminated, how it became contaminated and who is responsible for causing the problem, what the contamination problem is, and how they plan to clean it up or how they have performed the cleanup.
  • Famine Early Warning Systems Network
    USAID‚s Famine Early Warning System (FEWS) is an information system designed to help decision-makers prevent famine in Sub-Saharan Africa. Using satellite and ground-based data, specialists assess crop and meteorological data and disseminate the information to governments in the area.
  • Food Chains and Food Webs
    This web site contains a description of the food chain, food web, and an ecological pyramids in an ecosystem.
  • Freedom From Hunger
    Freedom from Hunger is committed to having a major long-term impact on hunger by promoting self-help for a hungry world.
  • Indoor Air Quality
    This USEPA provides this Web page on a variety of indoor air pollutants.
  • International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)
    IUCN, the International Union for Conservation of Nature, helps the world find pragmatic solutions to our most pressing environment and development challenges. It supports scientific research, manages field projects all over the world and brings governments, non-government organizations, United Nations agencies, companies and local communities together to develop and implement policy, laws and best practice. IUCN is the world’s oldest and largest global environmental network.
  • NOAA
    This site provides links to information about the Exxon Valdez oil spill and the continuing efforts to restore Prince William Sound
  • Sustainable Development Information Service
    Home page for the Sustainable Development Information Service (SDIS). The Sustainable Development Information Service provides global and country-level data about sustainable development and the environment. SDIS helps users identify and locate the best available information and in many cases provides direct access to online resources.
  • Zero Emission Now
    This page gives data on contribution to greenhouse gas by some modes of transportation.