waste dump

Significance of Solid Waste Management

Some countries have achieved considerable success in solid waste management. But the rest of the world is grappling to deal with its wastes. In these places, improper solid waste management continues to impact public health of entire communities and cities; pollute local water, air and land resources; contribute to climate change and ocean plastic pollution; hinder climate change adaptation; and accelerate depletion of forests and mines. These environmental issues are a grim reminder of the significance of solid waste management for countries all over the world.

Compared to solid waste management, we can consider that the world has achieved significant success in providing other basic necessities like food, drinking water, energy and economic opportunities. Managing solid wastes properly can help improve the above services further. Composting organic waste can help nurture crops and result in a better agricultural yield.

Reducing landfilling and building sanitary landfills will reduce ground and surface water pollution which can help provide cleaner drinking water. Energy recovery from non-recyclable wastes can satiate significant portion of a city’s energy requirement but it is essential to have a modern air pollution control system to mitigate environmental impacts of waste-to-energy plants.

waste dump

Inclusive waste management where informal waste recyclers are involved can provide an enormous economic opportunity to the marginalized urban poor. Additionally, a good solid waste management plan with cost recovery mechanisms can free tax payers money for other issues.

In the case of India, sustainable solid waste management would provide:

  • 9.6 million tons of compost that could have resulted in a better agricultural yield
  • energy equivalent to 58 million barrels of oil from non-recyclable wastes
  • 6.7 million tons of secondary raw materials to industries in the form of recyclable materials and livelihood to the urban poor

Solid waste management until now has only been a social responsibility of the corporate world or one of the services to be provided by the municipality and a non-priority for national governments. However, in Mumbai, the improperly managed wastes generate 22,000 tons of toxic pollutants like particulate matter, carbon monoxide, nitrous and sulfur oxides in addition to 10,000 grams of carcinogenic dioxins and furans every year. These numbers are only for the city of Mumbai. This is the case in cities all across the developing world. There are numerous examples where groundwater is polluted by heavy metals and organic contaminants due to solid waste landfills.

Solid waste management expenditure of above $ 1 billion per year competes with education, poverty, security and other sustainable initiatives in New York City. Fossil fuels for above 500,000 truck trips covering hundreds of miles are required to transport NYC’s waste to landfills outside the city and state. Similarly, New Delhi spends more than half of its entire municipal budget on solid waste management, while it is desperate for investments and maintenance of roads, buildings, and other infrastructure.

Solid waste management is not just a corporate social responsibility or a non-priority service anymore. Improper waste management is a public health and environmental crisis, economic loss, operational inefficiency and political and public awareness failure. Integrated solid waste management can be a nation building exercise for healthier and wealthier communities. Therefore, it needs global attention to arrive at solutions which span across such a wide range of issues.

Waste management services play a crucial role in protecting the environment through effective solid waste management. By utilizing advanced technologies and sustainable practices, these services help to minimize the amount of waste that ends up in landfills and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. They also promote recycling and composting, which not only conserves natural resources but also reduces pollution and saves energy. Additionally, waste management services like The Busters Group are often involved in community education programs that encourage individuals to adopt eco-friendly habits and reduce their carbon footprint. Overall, waste management services are essential for creating a cleaner, healthier environment for ourselves and future generations.

Ranjith Annepu
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Originally posted 2015-01-29 03:46:52. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

18 thoughts on “Significance of Solid Waste Management

  1. Composting is the best way to get rid of organic garbage as well as provide fertile grounds for plants to grow. It’s two benefits with one strike. I really love reading about it.

  2. Thank you for the comprehensive article on the importance of waste management. Great overview of the state of waste management in many different countries, and the potential solutions to the issues we face.

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