No city can be a smart city without a solid waste management plan. Critically analyze why the waste management policies are a failure. Also, suggest solutions for India's garbage problem.|

Published: September 2, 2017

With increasing urban population, the country is facing a problem of waste management. Although municipal authorities provide waste management services, however, most of the municipal authorities dump waste in dump-yard without any processing. The issues related to poor solid waste management in urban areas:

  1. The current culture of either burn or dump which is not a sustainable solution.
  2. Lack of segregation at source culture & inadequate community participation
  3. Callous attitude of authorities, for example in Delhi MCD do not prioritize solid waste management issues; DDA is not ready to give land for alternate sites. Due to this height of landfill site is increasing day by day.
  4. More than three-fourth of solid waste management budget is allotted to collection and transportation, leaving very little for processing or resource recovery and disposal.
  5. Obsolete technologies for waste treatment
  6. Lack of awareness & Also lack of processing of organic waste.
  7. Recovery of e-waste is abysmally low, there is need to encourage recycling of e-waste.

Segregation at source should be at the heart of municipalities solid waste management system. It should be combined with penalties for non-segregated waste. Also, colony-level processing facilities should be promoted. With smart cities in mind, civic bodies need to redraw long term vision in solid waste management and rework their strategies as per changing lifestyles.

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