Some estimates put the percent of Earth's surface covered by landfills at 0.02%.
Even if the world composted and recycled as much as possible, we would be left with an insanely large amount of waste to break down. We must find a way to deal with waste that cannot decompose in its current environment.
In the very near future, using modern technology, the United Nations proposes the following solution:
Using drones, helicopters, planes, and national militaries, a specific mixture will be spread across as many landfills as possible. If we can cover the Earth with waste in a matter of years, we can cover that waste with a thin layer of liquid in even less time. This process will only be executed in all consenting countries; those skeptical of the procedure will not be obliged to participate.
The mixture will contain (in order of decreasing abundance)
- Moss (spores) to break down solid waste
- Fungi (spores) to break down solid waste
- Aerobic bacteria to displace those using methane and make use of the increased oxygen from moss; to decompose organic matter faster
- Ideonella sakaiensis to break down plastics with increased efficiency
- Halomonas titanicae to break down metals with increased efficiency
Strains of bacteria may be farmed in vats in large facilities
While some emmissions may result from this mixture, they are hypothesized to be overall less pollusive than the emissions that would result naturally. In a number of decades, this strategy is suggested to be able to reduce our landfills immensely.
So can we actually "paint the world with bacteria" in this way?
Will the substance actually do the job (in a number of years)? If not, what would you change? Is anything in the mixture redundant or unnecessary?