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Waste sorting is the process by which waste is separated into different elements. Waste sorting can occur manually at the household and collected through curbside collection schemes, or automatically separated in materials recovery facilities or mechanical biological treatment systems. Hand sorting was the first method used in the history of waste sorting.
Waste can also be sorted in a civic amenity site.
"Waste segregation" means dividing waste into dry and wet. Dry waste includes wood and related products, metals and glass. Wet waste typically refers to organic waste usually generated by eating establishments and are heavy in weight due to dampness. Waste can also be segregated on the basis of being biodegradable or non-biodegradable.
Landfills are an increasingly pressing problem. Less and less land is available to deposit refuse, but the volume of waste is growing. As a result, segregating waste is not just of environmental importance, but also of economic concern.
Waste is collected at its source in each area and separated. The way that waste is sorted must reflect local disposal systems. The following categories are common:
Organic waste can also be segregated for disposal:
Chip pan oil (fryer oil), used fats, vegetable oil and the content of fat filters can be collected by companies able to re-use them. Local authority waste departments can provide relevant addresses. This can be achieved by providing recycling bins.