Aug 06, 2020
One of the consequences of a modern society is the generation of enormous amounts of waste. The scale of materials use by industrialized countries dwarfs that of a century ago. By 2000 the stock of materials drew from all ninety-two naturally occurring elements in the periodic table compared with just twenty in 1900. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) estimates that, in the United States alone, consumption of metal, glass, wood, cement, and chemicals has grown eighteen-fold since 1900 and that the nation accounts for one-third of all materials used throughout the world.