chapter
Character and Quantity of Refuse
Miscellaneous Notes CI/SfB51
Pages 2

Composition of refuse Refuse is not homogenous and does not have consistent characteristics and domestic refuse has been described as a heterogeneous compound of organic and inorganic wastes. The inorganic (mostly carbonaceous) includes paper, cardboard, textiles, ash, vegetable waste; and the inorganic includes broken crockery, glass, ferrous and non-ferrous metals, stones, etc. If we accept that domestic refuse comprises everything discarded after use, it will include not only cinders, ashes, tea leaves, fruit, vegetable and animal wastes, paper, cardboard, plastics, kitchen equipment, cans, glass and crockery, but also bedsteads, bedding, broken or discarded furniture, worn-out motor cars, etc. Much of the latter can be described as bulky waste (i.e. all articles too large to be contained in a dustbin), and accounts for 3/4 percent (by weight) of the total waste handled by local authority and 6/8 per cent by volume (does not include cars). Amounts vary due to local and seasonal variations such as coal mining towns, seaside resorts, good-class residential areas, all-electric fl ats, premises with garbage grinders. Allowances should be made, if cases are known, that the occupants will differ e.g. old people’s fl ats or maisonettes. Also allowance should always be made to provide suffi cient storage at winter (and perhaps other) bank holiday periods.