Growth expected in California’s solid waste
New York, NY— Waste flows
in California will likely continue their recent upward trend,
which began in the late 1990s, assuming current state laws remain
in effect and demographic trends hold steady, according to a report
released by Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services titled
“California’s Solid Waste Sector Is Poised For Growth
Despite Lingering Challenges”.
population grows and economic conditions remain healthy, there
is likely to be considerable additional demand for, and investment
in landfill, waste transfer, material recovery facilities, waste-to-energy
plants and related infrastructure,” said Standard &
Poor’s credit analyst Ian Carroll.
Some challenges are present;
however, as landfill capacity in coastal communities dwindles.
Various estimates forecast between 15 and 50 years of available
capacity in California’s landfills. Viable options for waste
disposal is more likely to require transferring waste (by rail
or road) considerable distances, which can add to disposal cost.
For Southern California, for example, it is not unheard of for
waste to be hauled approximately 100 miles inland to landfills
in the Mojave Desert. Transportation costs will contribute to
increased fees, and rising residential and commercial bills.
The development of a legislative
and regulatory framework for handling electronic waste, or e-waste,
may hold some promise for California solid waste providers. E-waste
is among the fastest-growing segment of the waste stream in California,
as more electronic hardware approaches the end of its useful life.