Efforts to reduce waste to protect our environment


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Grade level: 5th grade

Skills: Bar graph

Related environmental issues: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

In 2013, Americans generated about 254 million tons of waste, and 66% (167 million tons) of the waste ended up in landfills.  Landfills have been creating a clear threat to human health and our environment, causing air pollution and ground water pollution.

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Puente Hills Landfill (Los Angeles) Photo Courtesy: Los Angeles Times

To protect our health and the environment, Mead Johnson has been trying to reduce the amount of waste sent to landfills.  The bar graph below shows the amount of waste sent to landfills from the company between 2012 and 2014.

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  1. Has the amount of waste sent to landfills increased or decreased?
  2. What is the difference between the amount of trash sent to landfills in 2012 and 2014?  A) about 100 metric tons  B) about 250 metric tons  C) about 500 metric tons
  3. In which year, about 5,200 metric tons of waste was sent to landfills?


Answer Key

  1. decreased
  2. B
  3. 2013

Source) Mead Johnson. Protecting the Environment

U.S. Enviornmental Protection Agency, 2016. Municipal Solid Waste

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Also check…

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Landfill Gas to Renewable Energy Project

5th grade worksheets are available from here

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