A landfill is an area of ground that is used to dispose of rubbish and waste. In basic terms landfills are simply open areas that may be a natural ‘hole’ or that may be dug out to create a large hole into which the rubbish we throw away is dumped. So, when your refuse collection men take away your rubbish every week it will go to a landfill site (unless your council offers you a recycling service or your recycle yourself).
Landfill sites basically operate until they are full at which point they are covered over. The problem with landfill sites is that they contain many materials that will not degrade over time which can cause specific environmental damage. The fact that that we have been using this form of waste disposal for so many years also means that there are many issues with space for landfill sites nowadays.
These issues have led to many initiatives both in the UK and across the world to try and minimise the rubbish that we place in landfill sites and the harm that they can potentially cause. Nowadays in the UK, for example, we are moving towards a system whereby councils will be obliged to offer alternative waste disposal methods for biodegradable rubbish so that the use of landfill sites is cut back as much as possible.