‘I got a job, so I got a lot of slags’: Woman takes a break from slag collection to spend time with her slag friends
Slags and other slags are among the thousands of items collected from homes, garages, and abandoned factories around the world every year.
Slags are used as raw materials in textile production and, for the first time, are being used as a source of cheap fuel in the United States.
As the U.S. population grows, the demand for fuel has been increasing, and that demand is only expected to grow.
“I got two new kids, a new job and I’m not spending as much time on the slag collecting side,” said Lisa Miller, 62, who runs the Slag Collection Center in suburban Detroit.
“So now I’m working a bit on the fuel side, and I’ve got a few more slags in my garage.”
The average American household has about 500,000 gallons of gasoline in its tank, according to the U of M’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Most of that is produced from diesel and compressed natural gas.
It’s a small percentage of the gasoline consumed by Americans.
Slag collection, however, has grown exponentially over the past 30 years.
In the late 1990s, Miller said, she collected about 10,000 pounds of slag each year from the homes of her neighbors.
Today, she said, her collection is in excess of 200,000 barrels.
Miller said that her collection was a source for her daughter to spend more time with slags.
“It’s very fun, because the kids get to go out and play with the slags,” Miller said.
The process requires a lot more machinery than a yardstick.
The slag collects in a collection of various kinds, including concrete slags and asphalt slags that are mixed with a liquid that helps keep them together.
Slagged-bait trucks are also used, and there are a variety of machines that collect the slagged from various sources, including roads, bridges, and power lines.
Slagging is an environmentally responsible business, said Mike Vetter, an associate professor of materials science at the University of Illinois.
“We need to make sure that we’re getting it from a good source,” Vetter said.
“The slags get recycled in the end.”
For Miller, it was her daughter’s idea to start collecting the slagging from her yard.
“She was like, ‘I’ll just go to the garage and pick up the slugs, because I’m a slag collector, and she’d like to get some slags from my garage,'” Miller said of her daughter.
“Then we would go and work out how to put them together.”
The process took a while.
“Once we started doing it, I was like ‘Wow, I can do this!'”
Miller said as she recalled the day she started collecting the scraps.
“Now I collect them at home and put them on my shelves.”
In fact, her yard has more than 600,000 pieces of slagging in addition to the thousands in her garage.
“Our collection is growing,” Miller added.
Miller also has another collection of about 100,000 slags on her shelf.
“This is my home,” Miller explained, as she pointed to her collection of slagged-dollars.
Miller, who said she has amassed a large collection of discarded plastic and other items in the garage, said that she doesn’t mind spending time with the items that she collects.
“You don’t want to take it all, so we’re not getting rid of anything,” Miller, of Detroit, said.
But it’s hard to separate slags by type, because they can be collected in many different ways.
The most common is asphalt slag, which is made from asphalt slabs and other materials.
Other types include concrete slag and clay slag.
“In my yard, the slagers are all different,” Miller noted.
“Some are concrete, some are brick.
I like to put the brick in the slager because it’s a little lighter.
But most of them are clay.”
As the slagger collects, the asphalt slugs are added to the sludge mixture.
“When I put the slapper in the mix, I just let it sit there for a little while, then it dries out,” Miller stated.
“And when it’s dried out, it’s very hard to get rid of.
The reason is that you have to go into the garage to get the slappers out.”
“They’re not always the best choices,” he said.
If slags come from a source other than a landfill, Vetter explained, it can be difficult to determine the source.
“A lot of times, it will be a landfill that is contaminated by something that’s coming in from another source,” he added.
“But that’s why we have the collection centers.
We’re trying to find the source of these slags.”
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