Solid Waste Management is a concern of Urban India and How to deal with it
Solid waste management (SWM) has emerged as one of the most massive development challenges in urban India. Numerous studies indicate that the unsafe disposal of waste generates dangerous gases and leachates, due to microbial decomposition, climate conditions, refuse characteristics and land-filling operations. According to the 12th Schedule of the 74th Constitution Amendment Act of 1992, urban local bodies (ULBs) are responsible for keeping cities and towns clean.
In India, the volume of waste generation has been increasing rapidly over the last few years. According to the “Swachhata Sandesh Newsletter” by the MoHUA, as of January 2020, 147,613 metric tonnes (MT) of solid waste is generated per day, from 84,475 wards (See Table 2). The 2014 report by the “Task Force on Waste to Energy,” under the Planning Commission, estimates that urban India will generate 2,76,342 tonnes per day (TPD) of waste by 2021; 4,50,132 TPD by 2031; and 11,95,000 TPD by 2050. The per capita waste generation is 450 grams per day, and has increased at a rate of 1.3 percent per annum.
Solid waste can be separated into three categories: (i) biodegradable waste or organic waste (food and kitchen waste, green waste vegetables, flower, leaves, fruits and paper, etc.), (ii) inert and non-biodegradable waste (construction and demolition waste, dirt, debris, etc.) and (iii) recyclable waste (plastic, paper, bottles, glasses, etc.).
The increasing quantity of plastic waste has become a significant challenge and is a major contributor to environmental degradation. India generates 26,000 tonnes per day (TPD) of plastic waste, i.e. 9.4 million tonnes per annum.
Here are the methods of solid waste disposal and management undertaken by RB Concretes to take the issue-
1) Solid Waste Open Burning
2) Sea dumping process
3) Solid wastes sanitary landfills
4) Incineration method
5) Composting process
6) Disposal by Ploughing into the fields
7) Disposal by hog feeding
8) Salvaging procedure
9) Fermentation/biological digestion
1. Solid Waste Open Burning
Solid waste open burning is not the perfect method in the present scenario.
2. Sea Dumping Process
This sea dumping process can be carried out only in coastal cities. This is very costly procedure and not environment friendly.
3. Solid wastes sanitary landfills
Solid wastes sanitary landfills process is simple, clean and effective. In this procedure, layers are compressed with some mechanical equipment and covered with earth, leveled, and compacted. A deep trench of 3 to 5 m is excavated and micro-organisms act on the organic matter and degrade them.
In this procedure, refuse depth is generally limited to 2m. Facultative bacteria hydrolyze complex organic matter into simpler water soluble organics
4. Incineration method
Incineration method is suitable for combustible refuse. High operation costs and construction are involved in this procedure. This method would be suited in crowded cities where sites for land filling are not available.
It can be used to reduce the volume of solid wastes for land filling.
5. Composting process
Composting process is similar to sanitary land-filling and it is popular in developing countries. Decomposable organic matter is separated and composted in this procedure. Yields are stable end products and good soil conditioners. They can be used as a base for fertilizers.
Two methods have been used in this process:
a)Open Window Composting
b) Mechanical Composting
6. Disposal by Ploughing into the fields
Disposal by ploughing into the fields are not commonly used. These disposals are not environment friendly in general.
7. Disposal by hog feeding
Disposal by hog feeding is not general procedure in India. Garbage disposal into sewers including BOD and TSS increases by 20-30%. Refuse is ground well in grinders and then fed into sewers.
8. Salvaging procedure
Materials such as metal, paper, glass, rags, certain types of plastic and so on can be salvaged, recycled, and reused.
9. Fermentation/biological digestion
Biodegradable wastes are converted to compost and recycling can be done whenever possible. Hazardous wastes can be disposed using suitable methods.