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Oslo Needs Your Garbage

samzenpus posted about a year ago | from the burning-down-the-pile dept.

Earth 202

lister king of smeg writes in with news that Oslo is running out of garbage which it burns to generate heat and electricity. "Oslo, a recycling-friendly place where roughly half the city and most of its schools are heated by burning garbage — household trash, industrial waste, even toxic and dangerous waste from hospitals and drug arrests — has a problem: it has literally run out of garbage to burn. The problem is not unique to Oslo, a city of 1.4 million people. Across Northern Europe, where the practice of burning garbage to generate heat and electricity has exploded in recent decades, demand for trash far outstrips supply." Back in October we told you about a similar garbage shortage facing Sweden.

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202 comments

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Let it in! Now! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606619)

My putrid cock is knocking on your rancid asshole; I demand that you let it in! Should you not grant my penis entry into your fetid rectum, my little white tadpole friends will organize a protest on the exterior of your precious anus!

Murika the solution (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606633)

just get more americans to settle there... best waste producers in the world !

Never happened in Sim City 2000 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606643)

I never ran out in the game. Reality is failing to accurately model.

Re:Never happened in Sim City 2000 (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606799)

SC2K didn't model garbage.

Re:Never happened in Sim City 2000 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606877)

4000 did.

Re:Never happened in Sim City 2000 (2)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#43607287)

without a whole bunch of command line parameters on startup just to make it run stable, sc4000 is garbage

Re:Never happened in Sim City 2000 (1)

MachDelta (704883) | about a year ago | (#43607333)

And by "whole bunch" you mean the single argument needed to make it run on one core?

Re: Never happened in Sim City 2000 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607295)

No such game as 4000. You're either referring to Simcity 3000, or Simcity 4.

Whilst we're on the topic of Simcity; Fuck you EA & Maxis. No seriously, and I thought Spore was the worst game I'd ever played, until I realised that it's had way more screen time than I gave Simcity (2013). You guys are fucking jerks for trashing (heh) such a renound classic.

Re:Never happened in Sim City 2000 (1)

jones_supa (887896) | about a year ago | (#43607127)

SC2K didn't model garbage.

Duh! That's why he didn't run out of garbage in the game, as it wasn't simulated. To model reality correctly, it should've had garbage simulation and, an Oslo scenario where the garbage runs out at some point. ;)

Re:Never happened in Sim City 2000 (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#43607279)

i thought incinerators were bad. i tend to only use them when i'm desperate because they produce huge pollution and devalue nearby land.

politicians burn pretty well... unfortunately the combustion products are highly toxic

Reword (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606645)

The point isn't that Oslo doesn't produce enough garbage, it's that it uses more electricity than burning garbage can produce and because of high energy costs it's somehow cheaper to import garbage from Romania and Bulgaria than domestic generation costs.

Re:Reword (1)

cheater512 (783349) | about a year ago | (#43606651)

Well most countries would pay for someone else to deal with their garbage.
Definitely makes it cheaper.

Re:Reword (2)

kermidge (2221646) | about a year ago | (#43606707)

If Oslo et al paid for transpo costs, the U.S. would be in a fine situation. We could supply them for decades, I should think.

Re:Reword (4, Funny)

NF6X (725054) | about a year ago | (#43606751)

Indeed! I'm going to be renting a dumpster soon for some long overdue spring cleaning. If Oslo dropped off a dumpster at my place in southern California, I'd be happy to fill it up for them a few times.

Re:Reword (3, Funny)

nightcats (1114677) | about a year ago | (#43606763)

There's an old motto among plumbers (the real ones who work with pipes and stuff, not Nixon-era crooks), which loosely applies here: "your s#!t is our bread and butter."

Re:Reword (1)

gravious (19912) | about a year ago | (#43606993)

The one I've heard is more succinct, "there's money in s#!t".

Re:Reword (1)

pspahn (1175617) | about a year ago | (#43607053)

Indeed. Before my grandfather started a successful retail tree nursery, he "peddled piles of shit" on the north side of Denver. It used to be that it was a pretty good spring/summer business, supplemented with firewood sales to all the condos in Vail/Breck/Aspen in the winter.

In all that time since, seems the only thing we've learned is that it is better to build stuff out of wood instead of burning it, and instead burning the crap and trash for fuel.

Re:Reword (1)

DeBaas (470886) | about a year ago | (#43607573)

pecunia non olet

Re:Reword (1)

MaskedSlacker (911878) | about a year ago | (#43607671)

There's always money in the shit pipes.

Re:Reword (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606671)

Which is amazing since they produce a lot of Oil & Gas, I guess though they can sell that for heaps where as garbage they probably get paid by other countries to take it.

Re:Reword (5, Informative)

Z00L00K (682162) | about a year ago | (#43606815)

Most of the burned garbage is used to feed central heating systems. Same with a lot of other cities in Scandinavia. A few large central furnaces and a big network of hot water pipes.

Not so much to produce electricity. Most of the electricity in Scandinavia is water power or nuclear with a few coal/oil burners that are used for backup in case the current production is insufficient. Add to it a number of windmills but their contribution is small.

Re:Reword (3, Interesting)

skovnymfe (1671822) | about a year ago | (#43607165)

Denmark doesn't have hydro power (no mountains) and it doesn't have nuclear (oooh, Chernobyl..!). It's primarily the burning of natural gas and coal, plus whatever the wind farms produce, that keeps the lights on.

Re:Reword (4, Informative)

KonoWatakushi (910213) | about a year ago | (#43607357)

Denmark depends on their neighbors pumped hydro to dump excess wind generation, and draw upon when the wind isn't blowing. Nice arrangement for them, as it is essential for the success of wind or solar. Sadly, availability is limited, and Germany's choice to abandon nuclear is also stressing the grid in that region, and causing trouble for neighboring nations.

Re:Reword (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607389)

Most of the burned garbage is used to feed central heating systems. Same with a lot of other cities in Scandinavia. A few large central furnaces and a big network of hot water pipes.

Not so much to produce electricity. Most of the electricity in Scandinavia is water power or nuclear with a few coal/oil burners that are used for backup in case the current production is insufficient. Add to it a number of windmills but their contribution is small.

In Sweden (starting with Sweden, since I'm Swedish), windmills make out about 1/20 (slightly more, this far into 2013) of the total of the electricity produced that reach the public distribution network (it is also the second (after solar power) largest electric power production technology that produce electricity for local use by private buildings, and that production is not part of the official statistics). It is roughly the same amount of electricity that is produced in Sweden by waste heat from industry (most "waste" heat is reused for central heating, not electricity production, and Swedish industry is really good at reusing heat in production (e.g. compared to U.S. industry, which that, for example, use 20 times more energy to create heat per produced unit in smeltwerks and 10 times more in paper mills)). The wind turbines contribution to Swedens electricity production grew by 18% in 2012, and is still growing at an accelerated rate.

I'm not sure that I would call more then 1/20 of electricity production for a country with a small population, but with a huge heavy industry (mostly producing iron and copper or products made of steel and copper, and paper, all very power consuming processes), a small contribution.

In Denmark wind power stand for more then 1/4 of the electricity production and consumption. And most of the technology they use to produce it is several decades old, so the production will grow as they replace old technology with newer more efficient one. Most electrical energy used in Denmark is used for farming or food production (most of the bacon consumed in the world is produced in Denmark). Denmarks protectorate Iceland, mostly use thermal power, but wind power is on the rise. Its other large protectorate, Greenland, is mostly dependent on fossil fuel. But the amount of electricity consumed by the small Icelandic and Greenlandic populations is minuscule, compared to that used by main Denmark.

I'm not sure that I would call more then 1/4 of electricity production for a small country a small contribution.

Norway mostly rely on water power for their energy needs. But the last 2 years they've built new wind power plants even faster then Sweden.

Sweden, Denmark and Norway are self sufficient when it comes to energy consumption. Small amounts of electricity is imported from other European countries during consumption peaks and exported during production peaks.

Re:Reword (2)

Iskender (1040286) | about a year ago | (#43607475)

I'm not sure that I would call more then 1/20 of electricity production for a country with a small population, but with a huge heavy industry (mostly producing iron and copper or products made of steel and copper, and paper, all very power consuming processes), a small contribution.

You should be sure though. 5% is 5%, the population or usage doesn't matter. 5% is small.

If that 5% were somehow permanently knocked out it wouldn't be a huge problem. The other 95% is vital on the other hand.

I like wind power, and it's obvious you do too. But you shouldn't let it cloud your sense of proportions.

Re:Reword (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607805)

"Denmark's protectorate Iceland" (added a apostrophe for you)

Stupid swede.

try http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Founding_of_the_Republic_of_Iceland

Read a paper since the 1940s?

Re:Reword (0)

TrollstonButtersbean (2890693) | about a year ago | (#43607041)

So Finland can beat the Russians in WWII twice, but their captial of Oslo runs out of garbage today. Those Finns aren't so smart as they claim.

Re: Reword (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607069)

Read up on geography.

Re:Reword (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607383)

As in Helsinki, Sweden.

Choice quotes (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606657)

Of course, other areas of Europe are producing abundant amounts of garbage, including southern Italy, where cities like Naples paid towns in Germany and the Netherlands to accept garbage, helping to defuse a Neapolitan garbage crisis. Yet though Oslo considered the Italian garbage, it preferred to stick with what it said was the cleaner and safer English waste. “It’s a sensitive question,” Mr. Mikkelsen said.

In a hierarchy of environmental goals, Mr. Haltbrekken said, producing less garbage should take first place, while generating energy from garbage should be at the bottom. “The problem is that our lowest priority conflicts with our highest one,” he said.

“So now we import waste from Leeds and other places, and we also had discussions with Naples,” he added. “We said, ‘O.K., so we’re helping the Neapolitans,’ but that’s not a long-term strategy.”

“In the short-term view, of course, it’s better to burn the garbage in Oslo than to leave it in Leeds or Bristol.”

But “in the long term,” he said, “no.”

Re:Choice quotes (1)

SpzToid (869795) | about a year ago | (#43606997)

Amsterdam has invested in a huge facility for converting trash into electricity, and is improving the barge infrastructure so it can import more waste from neighboring countries. Anecdotally it seems to be a more efficient approach to create electricity, (and salvageable metals), as opposed to merely heat. The trams run on electricity, for example.

http://www.amsterdam.nl/aeb/english [amsterdam.nl]

Re:Choice quotes (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#43607299)

Amsterdam has invested in a huge facility for converting trash into electricity

but they can't do that... prostitution is a popular tourist attraction in amsterdam

Nothing new (5, Informative)

wvmarle (1070040) | about a year ago | (#43606667)

This started decades ago already.

First step was to keep compostables out of the trash (kitchen and garden wastes). Direct result: the rest of the trash, including lots of plastic and some paper, burned much hotter than it used to with all the wet stuff inside. And that caused problems for the ovens that were built for a different kind of fuel mix.

Over the recent years more and more plastics are being taken out from the trash. First the PET bottles, nowadays in large parts of Europe all kinds of plastic packing material has to be kept separate.

Most of the stuff that burns well (paper, plastics, organic wastes) is being recycled now, and kept out of the incinerators. What remains: not much, really. Some glass, stone, metals. Not much that burns well. Some wood will burn, some plastic that's attached to something else or otherwise ended up in the wrong bin. Baby diapers will burn quite well, too, as that's mostly paper and plastics. Rags that are so worn they're not offered to some charity.

Now indeed the volume of trash is decreasing (anything that's taken out to recycle is not trash), and the trash that's there won't burn as well as it used to. So no surprise really that it's causing problems for the operators of waste incinerators.

Re:Nothing new (2)

Nemyst (1383049) | about a year ago | (#43606717)

And honestly, I'd say that's a good thing. You're running out of waste. It's convenient to use waste to produce electricity, but it's not efficient nor really environmentally friendly (sure, it's not in the ground anymore, but it's in the air instead). You're much better off reusing/recycling whatever you can and scaling up more efficient energy sources instead.

Re:Nothing new (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | about a year ago | (#43606761)

Absolutely. Reduce, reuse, recycle. And if that all fails: recover the energy out of it.

Stuff like medical waste and hazardous waste are burned in special incinerators using lots of oil or gas, as these wastes (that often won't burn well by themselves, if at all) must be burned at really high temperatures to render them harmless. That will always continue, and recovering that heat and putting it to some other use is just an economically sound thing to do.

Re:Nothing new (1)

Z00L00K (682162) | about a year ago | (#43606837)

Just realize that when burning in a large centralized furnace there is a possibility to control the process more and have more advanced filters to take out the worst stuff. Compare that to when everyone did burn coal in their own stove at home in London.

Re:Nothing new (1)

Ost99 (101831) | about a year ago | (#43607097)

Burning the garbage is better than letting it rot and produce methane.
Norway does both materials and energy recycling of garbage, ~45% is recycled for materials and ~40% is burnt to reclaim energy. Only ~15% goes on landfills.

Re:Nothing new (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#43607307)

burning methane is much more environmentally friendly than burning garbage

Re:Nothing new (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607813)

that is actually done as well, although providing the 'ideal' rot seems to be tricky.

Re:Nothing new (5, Informative)

aliquis (678370) | about a year ago | (#43607221)

Yeah, as the others have said they of course got good filtering, and likely burn at high temperatures / efficiently.

Also feel free to look at this picture from MÃlarenergi (I guess it's in VÃsterÃ¥s, Sweden):
http://www.malarenergi.se/PageFiles/8317/Illustration_BB.jpg [malarenergi.se]
Missing the next part of the image.
Here's the full "article" (in their own magazine) in Swedish describing the process and with the full picture:
http://www.malarenergi.se/PageFiles/7417/Pages%20from%20nonstop-4-2012.pdf [malarenergi.se]
A young kid interested in it:
http://www.malarenergi.se/PageFiles/7417/Folke1_3.pdf [malarenergi.se]
Page two here got the full illustration of how it's supposed to work, page one is a description in English - Enjoy.
http://www.malarenergi.se/Documents/Broschyrer/fornyelseprojektet-eng-2013.pdf [malarenergi.se]

http://www.malarenergi.se/sv/om-malarenergi/vara-anlaggningar/kraftvarmeverket/Valkommen-till-fornyelsebloggen/Blogginlagg/En-robust-bransleberedning-helt-avgorande-for-Block-6/ [malarenergi.se]
http://www.malarenergi.se/sv/om-malarenergi/vara-anlaggningar/kraftvarmeverket/Valkommen-till-fornyelsebloggen/Blogginlagg/Varfor-bygger-Malarenergi-en-avfallsforbranningsanlaggning/ [malarenergi.se]
http://www.malarenergi.se/sv/om-malarenergi/vara-anlaggningar/kraftvarmeverket/Valkommen-till-fornyelsebloggen/Blogginlagg/Avfall-som-bransle/ [malarenergi.se]
http://www.malarenergi.se/sv/om-malarenergi/vara-anlaggningar/kraftvarmeverket/Valkommen-till-fornyelsebloggen/Blogginlagg/Miljo/ [malarenergi.se]
http://www.malarenergi.se/sv/om-malarenergi/vara-anlaggningar/kraftvarmeverket/Valkommen-till-fornyelsebloggen/?category=turbine [malarenergi.se]

Re:Nothing new (1)

Sique (173459) | about a year ago | (#43607281)

About twenty years ago I visited a waste burning plant in Mannheim, Germany. The guide was proud to tell us, that the air above the plant is of better quality than the air above downtown Mannheim due to all the filtering they do to the exhaust fumes.

Re:Nothing new (1, Interesting)

jez9999 (618189) | about a year ago | (#43607647)

You're much better off reusing/recycling whatever you can

Debatable. See this Penn & Teller Bullshit! episode [youtube.com] , and consider how much empirical evidence you've actually seen that recycling is always best for the environment or whether, in many cases, it would actually be better to landfill stuff and create new stuff from scratch, especially things like glass where we have an effectively infinite supply of sand to create new glass with.

Re:Nothing new (4, Funny)

Dexter Herbivore (1322345) | about a year ago | (#43606749)

Baby diapers will burn quite well, too, as that's mostly paper and plastics.

With one HELL of an organic deposit in them.

Re:Nothing new (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#43607311)

judging by how active my kids are i find it hard to believe there would be any useful energy left in their diaper deposits

Re:Nothing new (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about a year ago | (#43607395)

judging by how active my kids are i find it hard to believe there would be any useful energy left in their diaper deposits

Human, I told you before: There are levels of survival we are prepared to accept. There are, in fact, degrees of shit we are willing to eat.

Re:Nothing new (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607575)

There was an excellent comment on The Register [theregister.co.uk] earlier this week examining this very question:

"You could always burn your own dung for heat and cooking!"

I doubt it. If the tods are dry enough, and your diet high enough in plant materials, then there's a chance it will give out some modest heat because the lignin fibres that your body hasn't digested do have a similar energy content as wood fibres of similar weight. But lookin at what Lester's selected the rice doesn't look to be whole grain, eggs will leave nothing, chick peas will be good, so on balance I reckon he'll be crimping off lengths of regular clay, and that doesn't burn well even if dried.

If you don't have any other choices, dried elephant dung picked up off the African savannah may be a just about useable fuel, but for the reasons above I doubt that Reg writer droppings will be anything like as good. This is why sewage plant companies have to use fossil fuels to incinerate sewage sludges. If Lester has got some of the fine sieves used in (for example) sedimentology, then he could dissolve his dreadnoughts and used tissue in a bucket of water, and filter the resulting solution, rinse a few times, and he'll have the lignin fibres on their own, ready to use as soon as they are dried. Even so, any neighbours may take issue with Lester's renewables, and the actual energy recovered will be very small indeed. Like most other forms of renewable energy, in fact.

Re:Nothing new (1)

I'm New Around Here (1154723) | about a year ago | (#43606773)

This started decades ago already.

Exactly. Scientists have been warning about Peak Garbage for years, but no, the energy companies didn't want to listen. They wanted to act like we had an unlimited supply of fuel for their wasteful power plants. (Powering thousands of air conditioners, I'm sure.) Well, now they have to start garbage fracking, just to keep production going. They have to get it from the fracking English, and the fracking Romanians, but luckily for Italy's eco-refuse system, the fracking Neopolitans (sp?) were turned down.

So, now that Peak Garbage has been scientifically proven, are the Osaleonians (sp?) going to change their environmentally conscientious ways?

Re:Nothing new (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year ago | (#43606967)

Osaleonians

What on earth does that mean?

Re:Nothing new (1)

gravious (19912) | about a year ago | (#43607021)

Neapolitan/Napoletano/a.

Oslovian.

These are demonyms. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demonym [wikipedia.org]
FTL: The word demonym comes from the Greek word for "populace" ( demos) with the suffix for "name" (-onym).

Re:Nothing new (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607049)

Nah, they'll just find something else to burn like food. For example, shelled corn is burnt for heat.

Next, it'll probably be corpses, then they could set up suicidal tourism or something -- the fuel comes to YOU. But that's really eating into their future, since they would be burning organic matter that would one day become fossil fuel.

Re:Nothing new (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606807)

They could burn shit from sewage plants. Yes, some would say "it is fertilizer", but not really thanks to industrial waste dumped into it.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130410201824.htm [sciencedaily.com]

So, dry and burn the shit while limiting heavy metal emissions. Dry shit burns really really well.

Re:Nothing new (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about a year ago | (#43606941)

If done properly it can also be carbon negative since some of carbon that was headed back to the biosphere as methane/CO2 can be sequestered by burrying what's left of the burnt shit. Since the carbon tax was introduced in Australia pig farmers have become more interested in the technology.

Re:Nothing new (3, Informative)

hankwang (413283) | about a year ago | (#43607033)

"What remains: not much, really. Some glass, stone, metals. Not much that burns well."

I'm not sure what country you're describing, but here in the Netherlands, we separate paper, glass, plastic packaging (PE, PET, PP, PS), organic waste, electrical equipment, chemical waste. Stones (e.g. from breaking down a wall) are not supposed to be mixed with household waste. Laminated materials such as potato crisp bags and milk cartons, styrofoam, discarded household items go into the "other waste" bin. I'm not sure whether I'm supposed to, but plastic with food scraps sticking onto it don't make it to my plastics container since I don't want them to rot and smell. My trash bags will burn pretty well.

For the Netherlands, I think company offices are a big contributor to incinerable waste. They separate the paper, but not the plastics. Many company restaurants are not separating compostable waste from what the employees leave on their trays.

Re:Nothing new (1)

enz (744942) | about a year ago | (#43607043)

It might be true that the ovens need to be run with different parameters or even built differently, but taking the wet garden and kitchen waste out of the mix is a good thing. Obviously some energy goes into drying the wet components before they can burn. Also, if the burning plant is used for electricity generation (and many plants in Europe are hybrid, i.e. they produce both electricity and heat), then burning at a hotter temperature produces more electricity out of the same amount of trash (see Carnot's law of thermodynamics).

Re:Nothing new (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | about a year ago | (#43607079)

Taking all that garden and kitchen waste out is certainly a good thing: that's why they do it in the first place.

Some power plants may be hybrids, for most heat is waste. The problem of heat is the transportation - and it has a relatively low economic value. You can only reuse heat if you have someone that needs the heat close by. With power plants far from the cities, heating homes with waste heat is often not practical. And in summer you don't need to heat your homes, while the power plants still have this heat to get rid of.

Re:Nothing new (2)

darthdavid (835069) | about a year ago | (#43607435)

Paradoxically you can actually run an aircon off waste heat using an absorption cooler so central heat (or steam depending on how the plant is set up) can be just as useful in summer as in winter. A lot of places in NYC are air-conditioned this way actually...

Re:Nothing new (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | about a year ago | (#43607473)

Many places in the world (like most of Europe) only need heating in winter, no cooling in summer (other than large shopping malls and so).

Re:Nothing new (2)

gravious (19912) | about a year ago | (#43607045)

Here in Ireland local councils have been trying to get waste incinerators built for years but because of NIMBYism it still hasn't happened yet. Environmental concerns are also cited (prions I think?). So the good folk of Ireland are against incineration, nuclear, fracking, wind farms to name but a few 20th century technologies. And we import all our energy and export our waste. We don't have the climate for solar. And they don't want us to burn fossil fuels - but indeed we burn the peat from our bogs. What a depressing country, no wonder so many emigrate and never return. Yay, go Ireland!

Re: Nothing new (1)

oobayly (1056050) | about a year ago | (#43607171)

I remember campaign - "Incinerators mean dioxins, dioxins mean death".

All I could think was that I saw plenty of healthy people in Vienna where they have a (pretty cool looking) incinerator slap band in the city.

I also remember hearing about the plan for a crematorium in Ovens in Cork, that would have been gas.

Re:Nothing new (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#43607323)

they could just make a deal with the ira... they can bomb whoever they like as long as they throw some garbage in too

Re:Nothing new (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607173)

Baby diapers will burn quite well, too, as that's mostly paper and plastics.

Something tells me that you never had the "baby diappers experience".

Waxed paper. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607457)

Much more packaging could be made of biofuel.

We can help. (2, Interesting)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year ago | (#43606673)

Dear Europe,

The United States has so much trash, we're dumping it into the ocean. For a small additional fee, we'll ship you all the waste of the eastern seaboard. Note to slashdot mods: I'm not joking. We really do dump it into the ocean.

Buy American. Buy trash.

Re:We can help. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606839)

RTFA (1st paragraph even):

This is a city that imports garbage. Some comes from England, some from Ireland. Some is from neighboring Sweden. It even has designs on the American market.

Re:We can help. (5, Informative)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year ago | (#43606895)

I'm not joking. We really do dump it into the ocean.

According to the EPA, [epa.gov] that stopped completely by 1992.

"The main objective of the federal Ocean Dumping Ban Act of 1988 has been realized--we have stopped dumping sewage sludge into the ocean," Reilly said. "EPA will continue to enforce the consent decrees which require the establishment of long-term, land-based disposal alternatives. We will also continue to encourage solutions that have beneficial uses. Through these efforts, not only are we preventing pollution by protecting the ocean from use as a dump, we are now seeing sludge recognized more and more as a resource, not as a waste.

Re:We can help. (2)

skovnymfe (1671822) | about a year ago | (#43607185)

I'm not joking. We really do dump it into the ocean.

According to the EPA, [epa.gov] that stopped completely by 1992.

That's about when they started splicing foreign elements into corn and soy, isn't it? I wonder where all that waste is going...

Re:We can help. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607273)

we have stopped dumping sewage sludge into the ocean

Sewage != trash.

Re:We can help. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607411)

Sewage sludge != trash

Re:We can help. (2)

flimflammer (956759) | about a year ago | (#43606987)

We really do dump it into the ocean

21 years ago.

Futurama (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606683)

Reminds me of a Futurama episode.
Fry had to teach the New York of 3000 how to litter like the New York of 2000.

Where I live (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606715)

Where I live (Edmonton, Canada), recycling plastic, paper and glass has been around for years. Household waste thrown into the garbage along with everything else is composted. The city is nearing 1.1 million people (growing by about 5000 per month), and the composting facility [wikipedia.org] separates out metals and wood, then within 30 days everything else goes from garbage to dirt. Heat is recycled, methane is de-watered, compressed, and burned in vehicles. You can't burn garbage here. I'm surprised they are allowed to burn garbage there.

Re:Where I live (1)

50000BTU_barbecue (588132) | about a year ago | (#43606803)

Yeah, but you're still in Edmonton. Zing!

Never get that 3 garbage plant. (4, Funny)

nitehawk214 (222219) | about a year ago | (#43606719)

Don't they know Garbage always gets expensive in the mid game? Haven't they played Powergrid?

Re:Never get that 3 garbage plant. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607101)

I guess we are in mid game then.. time to start switching my plants to huge coal plants, maybe supplemented by one big nuclear. Soon everyone will have nuclear plants, and it's going to be impossible to get uranium. If that fusion plant comes around you better snatch that one also. As a back up get a good sized wind farm. Or just rush to finish it before others have their plants ready!

Re:Never get that 3 garbage plant. (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#43607371)

solar plants!

Re:Never get that 3 garbage plant. (1)

AeneaTech (1308711) | about a year ago | (#43607211)

Awesome, I wish I had mod points!

Re:Never get that 3 garbage plant. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607425)

Damn. Beaten to the obvious punch. (For those who don't get it: have a look [boardgamegeek.com] .)

I was going to say that Oslo obviously needs to manoeuvre itself into last place in turn order, to get the cheap resources. And to be able to get its pick of new power plants.

Mr. Fusion (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about a year ago | (#43606759)

Doc

Obligatory New Jersey reference (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606793)

The world's energy demands can be met -- not by harnessing the power of the atom, but by harnessing the garbage of New Jersey.

Re:Obligatory New Jersey reference (2)

Chas (5144) | about a year ago | (#43606841)

That's like saying "The answer to our energy needs is in the Earth's core".

Sure. That may be true. But actually GETTING there and doing anything in that particular area is a very dangerous proposition.

Re:Obligatory New Jersey reference (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606865)

That's like saying "The answer to our energy needs is in the Earth's core".

Sure. That may be true. But actually GETTING there and doing anything in that particular area is a very dangerous proposition.

But not quite so dangerous as letting world leaders fight wars over oil, no?

Re:Obligatory New Jersey reference (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#43607373)

gang wars in jersey are bad enough

We can help (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606859)

When 3D printing finally gets past its 15 minutes, we can ship them all our misshapen plastic trinkets. Should keep them going for decades.

Ikea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606861)

Surely a few more Ikea stores would solve the problem:-)

Tropical Paradise of Norway (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606929)

Just wait a couple decades, then you won't need heaters at all.

The garbage market (3)

dristoph (1207920) | about a year ago | (#43606979)

So will other countries be paying Norway to deal with their garbage, or will Norway be paying other countries for supplying them with fuel?

Re:The garbage market (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607741)

At the moment countries are paying Norway to deal with their garbage.
The system they use is most viable in colder climates but if all northern nations including Canada and Alaska starts to use a similar system for heating perhaps we will see a time where there is a shortage of organic waste. This could bring the price for garbage up in the positive.

Garbage Ball 3K (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43606985)

I believe there is a large ball of garbage orbiting the sun and due back circa 3000.
Grab your Smelloscope and you should be able to find it on it outbound trajectory

Garbage Mines (2)

sabt-pestnu (967671) | about a year ago | (#43607081)

We have nigh uncountable garbage mines in this country. Why should we not support our overseas friends power needs by opening them as concessions.

Which would lead to the natural conclusions: The EPA will regulate garbage mining, the Sierra Club will start decrying the spoilation of our resources, the paranoid will start advocate government control to assure our future garbage needs....

Re:Garbage Mines (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about a year ago | (#43607405)

Some day, not long after the last drop of oil is sucked from the Earth and all the trash has all been burned, the future humans will look back through the ages and curse our ignorance: "All that valuable material for making and recycling plastics, and they FUCKING BURNED IT?!"

Re:Garbage Mines (2)

Mashiki (184564) | about a year ago | (#43607635)

We have nigh uncountable garbage mines in this country. Why should we not support our overseas friends power needs by opening them as concessions.

You know what's funny about all of this? Here in Canada we can't even get garbage incineration off the ground in most places, because environmentalists are so "up in arms" over the entire thing. They then pressure up the local residents, and it becomes an environmentalist/nimby problem. And at the end of the road, we end up shipping garbage to abandoned quarries, or in other cases off to Michigan or other US states.

geo-thermal?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607095)

I thought that place ran on geo-thermal.... oh well, another green illusion shattered.

Re: geo-thermal?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607189)

Nah, actually we're powered by hydroelectric plants + imports... which reminds me: when did Oslo get a population of 1,4 million?

Re: geo-thermal?? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607205)

The metropolitan area holds about 1400K people. However I think this includes Lillestrøm and Sandvika. The city itself only has ~600K.

Not enough garbage?? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607179)

If they are running out of garbage they should start picking it up from the streets. Oslo is by far the city in scandinavia with the most garbage in the streets.

We do already import large amounts of garbage from Romania though. It's called gypsies.

-Oslovian.

This smells like... (3, Funny)

r33per (585447) | about a year ago | (#43607443)

an episode of Futurama [wikipedia.org] ...

Not a unique problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607463)

I can't imagine this is only a problem in certain Scandinavian cities. Garabge incarceration that drives generators has been the standard way of processing non-recyclable refuse for decades in most of Europe.

1.4 million?? (1)

FalMunir (2744313) | about a year ago | (#43607509)

Last time I counted, we were 623,966 residents here. Give or take a dozen. Did the city need garbage so badly they started to burn the population now?

Re:1.4 million?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607627)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_Oslo_Region

You can see that the 1400K includes several other cities as well.

Re:1.4 million?? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43607757)

No, that is just a conversion error between metric and imperial residents.

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