Math majors needed: How many cubic yards of demolition debris in a ton?

The sign at the Rice County Landfill gate says:

landfillsign081229Bridgewater Township has enacted a host fee on all garbage and demolition effective January 1, 2008 for $3.33 per ton of garbage and $75 per ton of demolition.

Bridgewater Township Resolution No. 2007 – 12 (PDF) says:

bridgewater-ordinance-sshot NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, the Board of Supervisors of Bridgewater Township hereby enacts a fee of $1 per cubic yard of solid waste, as allowed under Minnesota Statutes 115A.921, Subd. 1 and a fee of $.50 per cubic yard of demolition debris, as allowed under Minnesota Statutes 115A.921, Subd. 2.

So is the Landfill overcharging, undercharging, or right on the money?


  1. Anthony Pierre said:

    1 cubic yard = .27 tons

    December 30, 2008
  2. Bruce W. Morlan said:

    The township passed a code based on MN statute which uses volume as the measure of waste. Rice County (which runs the site) is set up to measure weight.

    So, according to the County’s accountants:

    * common waste: $3.33 per ton means 1 ton of common waste takes up 3.33 cubic yards, or 1 cubic yard weighs .3003003 tons.

    * construction debris: $0.75 per ton means 1 ton of construction waste takes up 1.5 cubic yards, or 1 cubic yard of construction debris weighs 0.666 tons.

    The $75 on the sign is a typo, as evidenced by the change from $26.00 per ton to $26.75 per ton for construction waste.

    Also, it looks like the County is going to make less off non-commercial entities, since they did not assess the full $3.33 per ton for small and medium garbage loads.

    December 30, 2008
  3. john george said:

    Anthony & Bruce- Uh, as I understand these measurements, a yard is 27 cubic feet (volume) and has no correlation to weight. A person would have to know the density (weight) of each cubic foot of material. 27 cubic feet of concrete debris is certainly going to weigh more that 27 cubic feet of old fiberglass insulation. When comparing the densities of the debris I cited, a ton of concrete debris takes up much less volume in the landfill that a ton of old insulation, so it seems there needs to be some formulation to equalize the cost for disposing of the various materials. But then, I never was exposed to “new math.”

    December 30, 2008
  4. Stephanie Henriksen said:

    Thanks, Griff, for bringing the sign to our attention. The sign makes it seem that any increase in rate this year is due to the township host fee alone. Didn’t the county also raise the rate?

    Not many townships have a landfill within their borders. A dozen or more townships charge a host fee, which is allowed by law, to compensate for the obvious impacts on residents. I would think Rice County would want to foster a good relationship with the township, now that we have our own zoning and more say in what happens here. Evidently, not so.

    January 2, 2009

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