its Management
• It is defined as:
Waste (also known as rubbish, trash, refuse,
garbage, junk) is any unwanted or useless materials.
“Any materials unused and rejected as worthless
or unwanted” and “A useless or profitless activity;
using or expending or consuming thoughtlessly or
Waste - Definition & Classification
Any material which is not needed by the owner, producer or
• Domestic waste
• Factory waste
• Waste from oil factory
• E-waste
• Construction waste
• Agricultural waste
• Food processing waste
• Bio-medical waste
• Nuclear waste
Classification of Wastes
• Solid waste- vegetable waste, kitchen waste, household waste etc.
• E-waste- discarded electronic devices like computer, TV, music
systems etc.
• Liquid waste- water used for different industries e.g. tanneries,
distilleries, thermal power plants
• Plastic waste- plastic bags, bottles, buckets etc.
• Metal waste- unused metal sheet, metal scraps etc.
• Nuclear waste- unused materials from nuclear power plants
Solid Waste
• It is defined as:
“Non-liquid, non-soluble materials ranging from
municipal garbage to industrial wastes that
contain complex and sometimes hazardous
• Solid wastes also include:
• Sewage sludge
• Agricultural refuse
• Demolition wastes
• Mining residues
Paper and
Yard Waste
Food Waste
Rubber, leather, &
Types of Solid Waste
 Broadly there are 3 types of waste which are as follows:
1. Household waste is generally classified as Municipal waste
2. Industrial waste as Hazardous waste
3. Biomedical waste or Hospital waste as Infectious waste
Municipal Solid Waste
• Municipal solid waste consists of:
 Household waste
 Construction and demolition debris
 Sanitation residue
 Waste from streets.
USA Domestic Waste
The type of litter we generate and the approximate time it
takes to degenerate
Type of litter
Approximate time it takes to
degenerate the litter
Organic waste such as vegetable and fruit
peels, leftover foodstuff, etc
A week or two.
Paper 10–30 days
Cotton cloth 2–5 months
Wood 10–15 years
Woolen items 1 year
Tin, aluminum, and other metal items such as
100–500 years
Plastic bags one million years
Glass bottles undetermined
Made by Sahrish (BS Hons in Environmental
Science) International Islamic University,
Solid Waste in India
• 7.2 million tonnes of hazardous waste
• One Sq. km of additional landfill area every-year
• Rs. 1600 crore for treatment & disposal of these wastes
• In addition to this industries discharge about 150 million tonnes of
high volume low hazard waste every year, which is mostly
dumped on open low lying land areas.
• Source: Estimate of Ministry of Environment & Forest
Growth of Solid Waste In India
• Waste is growing by leaps & bounds
• In 1981-91, population of Mumbai increased from 8.2 million to
12.3 million
• During the same period, municipal solid waste has grown from
3200 tonnes to 5355 tonne, an increase of 67%
• Waste collection is very low for all Indian cities
• City like Bangalore produces 2000 tonnes of waste per annum, the
ever increasing waste has put pressure on hygienic condition of the
• Source: The Energy & Resources Institute, New Delhi
Waste Collection in India
• Primarily by the city municipality
-No gradation of waste product e.g. bio-degradable, glasses,
polybags, paper shreds etc.
-Dumps these wastes to the city outskirts
• Local raddiwala / kabadiwala (Rag pickers)
-Collecting small iron pieces by magnets
-Collecting glass bottles
-Collecting paper for recycling
• MCD- Sophisticated DWM (Delhi Waste Management) vehicle
How solid waste affected us in recent years?
• Cloudburst in Mumbai (2005) clogged the sewage line due to
large no. of plastic bags
• Blast in the Bhusan Steel factory at Noida, caused due to imported
scrap from Iran
• Reduction in the number of migratory birds due to consumption of
contaminated foods
• Stray animals dying on streets and farmland due to consumption
of plastic bags, which blocks the food movement in their stomach
• Three R’s (Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle) to be
followed for waste management.
• Otherwise Refuse!
Pollution prevention is reducing or eliminating waste at the
source by modifying production processes, promoting the use of
non-toxic or less-toxic substances, implementing conservation
techniques, and re-using materials rather than putting them into
the waste stream.
Under this initiative, EPA focuses on an industry-by-industry
approach rather than a pollutant-by-pollutant approach to
regulatory policy.
Pollution Prevention Act 1990
Refuse: Disposal of Solid Wastes
• Before the final disposal of the solid wastes, it is
processed to recover the usable resources and to improve
the efficiency of the solid waste disposal system.
• The main processing technologies are
• Compaction
• Incineration
• Manual separation.
Sanitary Landfills
Secure Landfills
Problems Associated with Sanitary Landfills
• Methane gas production
• Surface water / ground water contamination
• Not a long-term remedy
• Even when closed, considerable cost
• Incineration is a disposal method in which solid organic
wastes are subjected to combustion so as to convert them
into residue and gaseous products.
• This process reduces the volumes of solid waste by 70 to
80 % of the original volume.
• Incineration and other high temperature waste treatment
systems are sometimes described as "thermal
Mass Burn Incinerator
Modern Incinerator are called combustion facilities or
Waste-to-Energy plants
Burn cleanly, Generate electricity to power 70,000 homes
Incineration of Solid Waste
emissions per
kwatt-hour of
electricity production
Problems Associated with Incineration
• Always some air pollution
• Produce large amounts of ash
• Site selection often controversial
• NIMBY: Not In My Back Yard
Old Tragedy: Love Canal
• Founded by William Love, who was trying to design a city that ran
off hydroelectric power.
– Began digging a canal to Niagara Falls, but ran out of money.
– ‘Hooker Chemical & Plastics Corporation’ bought the land and
dumped 22,000 tons of toxic chemicals into the canal.
Love Canal: Tragedy
• Hooker Chemical Company and Plastics Corporation were guilty for the Love
Canal tragedy. Hooker Chemical Company got sued for over $200,000,000.
• The dumpsite was buried, planted over, and eventually sold to the city of Niagara
Falls for $1.
• Almost 300 animals died of diseases.
• Babies were born with many birth defects including deafness, autism,
blindness, three ears, and an extra row of teeth.
• Pregnant women and children under the age of two had to be evacuated.
Chemicals leached into sewers.
Old Tragedy: Khian Sea waste disposal incident
• In January 1988, the barge was able to unload 4,000
tons in Haiti, claiming it was “topsoil fertilizer”.
– Greenpeace alerted Haiti officials that it was toxic ash. Haiti
ordered the ash be reloaded, but the barge left.
– Attempted to unload the cargo in Morocco, Yugoslavia, Sri
Lanka, and Singapore.
• Name of the ship was changed twice
– Eventually dumped into the Atlantic and Indian Ocean in
November 1988.
Organic matter + O
+ aerobic bacteria CO
+ H
O + NH
+ energy + humas
Composting and Biogas
Composting is the biochemical degradation of the organic fraction of
solid waste material having a humus-like final product that could be
used primarily for soil conditioning.
• Major portion of municipal solid wastes (MSW) in India contain up to 70%
by weight of organic materials.
• Certain industrial by-products – those from food processing, agricultural
and paper industries – are mostly composed of organic materials.
• Microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi and actinomycetes as well as larger
organisms such as insects and earthworms play an active role in
decomposing the organic materials. As microorganisms begin to
decompose the organic material, they break down organic matter and
produce CO
, water, heat and humus (the relatively stable organic end
product). This humus end product is compost.
Industrial Composting
• Reduces yard waste in landfills
• Can be sold or distributed to
Biogasification or Biomethanation is the process of conversion of organic matter in
the waste (liquid or solid) to BioMethane.
Methanogens (methane producing bacteria) are the last link in a chain of
microorganisms, which degrade organic material and return the decomposition
products to the environment. In this process, biogas is generated, which is a source
of renewable energy.
Biogas is a mixture of gases composed of methane (CH
) 40 – 70 vol.%, CO
30 –
60 vol.%, other gases 1 – 5 vol.% including, hydrogen (H
) 0 – 1 vol.% and H
S (0 –
3 vol.%). It originates from bacteria in the process of bio-degradation of organic
material under anaerobic (without air) conditions.
The Three R’s
• Three goals:
• 1) Reduce
• 2) Reuse
• 3) Recycle
• The most common consumer products recycled include:
Aluminum such as beverage cans
Copper such as wire
Steel food and aerosol cans
Old steel furnishings or equipment
Polyethylene and PET bottles
Glass bottles and jars
Paperboard cartons
Newspapers, magazines and light paper
 Corrugated fiberboard boxes.
Recycling into What?
Recycled roadways:
In 2003, Texas Department of
Transportation (TxDOT) built and repair
roadways with complete recycled content
products like Fly ash, Crushed Concrete,
Rubber, Steel, and compost materials.
European Countries:
The academic institutions should buy only recycled paper for regular activities.
JUSCO opened the road fully made out of recycled plastic waste – See more at:
Tata Steel Jamshedpur - Road Made from Waste Plastics in Jamshedpur
Recycling: India
Recycling: Benefits
– Saves money, raw materials, and land.
– Encourages individual responsibility.
– Reduces pressure on disposal systems.
• Japan recycles about half of all household and commercial
– Lowers demand for raw resources.
– Reduces energy consumption and pollution.
Example: Recycling 1 ton of aluminum saves 4 tons of bauxite, 700 kg of
petroleum coke and pitch, and keeps 35 kg of AlF
out of the air.
• Aluminum Production from scrap instead of bauxite ore cuts energy use by
– Yet still throw away more than a million tons of aluminum annually.
USA Recycling Rates
Recycling: Potential Problems
– Market prices fluctuate wildly.
– Contamination
• Most of 24 billion plastic soft drink bottles sold
annually in the U.S. are PET, which can be melted
and remanufactured into many items.
– But a single PVC bottle can ruin an entire truckload of
PET if melted together.
The Special Problem of Plastic
• Shear amount is staggering
• Do not readily breakdown
• Chemical Complexity
Plastics have large macromolecules.
When different types of plastics are melted together they tend to phase-
separate, like oil and water, and set in these layers. The phase
boundaries cause structural weakness in the resulting material.
Another barrier to recycling is the widespread use of dyes, fillers, and
other additives in plastics. Additives are less used in beverage
containers and plastic bags, allowing them to be recycled.
Problem of Plastic
Creek in Manilla, Philippines, March 01 2009.
Photo: Francis R. Malasig
Plastic Sea. Photo Source: Coastal wiki
The Hindu: Colossal waste for India
You tube video: water bottle
Cloudburst in Mumbai (2005) clogged the
sewage line due to large no. of plastic bags
The Special Problem of Tires
Using Old Tires
• Crumb Recycling
• Incineration 50%
• Low Grade Rubber
Energy Savings
Waste Prevention
• Integrated Waste Management
E-waste (Electronic and electrical waste) is the trash that you generate when you
discard broken, obsolete or surplus electronic and electrical gadgets. It includes
end-of-life gadgets like computers, printers, phones, T.V., refrigerators, toasters,
toys, shavers and many other gadgets that run on electricity. Rapid changes in
technology, lower costs and increasing demand for electronics has resulted in E-
waste growing rapidly everywhere.
What is E-Waste
Do we have laws on E-waste in India?
E-waste Rules came into force in 2012 and stipulate how E-waste must be disposed.
Consumers are responsible for the proper disposal of E-waste generated by them and
must hand over their used gadgets to authorized collectors, dismantlers or recyclers.
You can also give it back to the companies who sold them to you. The producers of
electronic and electrical gadgets are required to ensure collection and recycling of E-
waste. They have to set up “take-back” systems across the country.
E-waste: mobile phones
E-waste: TV, PC
Computer waste in India to grow 500% by 2020 - report
A technician walks inside an e-waste recycle factory at Mankhal, 55 km south Hyderabad July 17,
2009. Waste from discarded electronics will rise dramatically in the developing world within a
decade, with computer waste in India alone to grow by 500 percent from 2007 levels by 2020.
E-Waste: Recycling Countries
1999 average lifespan of a computer 4-
6 years.
2005 it dropped to less than 2 years.
Personal computers contain toxic heavy
metals such as barium, cadmium,
chromium, copper, zinc, nickel and
All of these materials are regulated by
the EPA.
Ports such as Dubai and Singapore
might be serving as transit points for e-
waste from OECD countries.
International traders are aware of
loopholes in India and help bypass laws
by labeling scrap as ‘used working
How hazardous is e-waste?
E-waste contains the following toxic substances – lead, cadmium, mercury,
hexavalent chromium, plastics, including PVC, BFRs, barium, beryllium,
carcinogens such as carbon black, phosphor and various heavy metals. This
deadly mix can cause serious, even fatal, health problems for those who have
to handle the waste
Mercury (Hg) is used in thermostats, sensors, relays, switches, medical equipment,
lamps, mobile phones and in batteries. 22% of the yearly world consumption of
mercury is used in electrical and electronic equipment.
Lead (Pb): Used in glass panels and gaskets in computer Monitors. Solder in printed
circuit boards and other components. Lead causes damage to the central and peripheral
nervous systems, blood systems, kidney and reproductive system in humans.
Chromium VI can cause damage to DNA and is extremely toxic in the environment.
Cadmium (Cd) Occurs in SMD chip resistors, infra-red detectors, and semiconductor
Cadmium compounds accumulate in the human body, especially the kidneys.
Barium (Ba) is a soft silvery-white metal that is used in computers in the front
panel of a CRT, to protect users from radiation.
Short-term exposure to barium causes brain swelling, muscle weakness, damage to
the heart, liver, and spleen.
Beryllium (Be) is commonly found on motherboards and finger clips.
Exposure to beryllium can cause lung cancer.
Phosphor and additives: The phosphor coating on cathode ray tubes contains heavy
metals, such as cadmium, and other metals, for example, zinc, vanadium as additives,
which are very toxic. is applied as a coat on the interior of the CRT faceplate.
Phosphor affects the display resolution and luminance of the images that is seen in
the monitor.
This is a serious hazard posed for those who dismantle CRTs by hand.
How hazardous is e-waste?
E-waste related laws of India
DGFT (Exim policy 2002-07): Second hand personal computers (PCs)/laptops are not
permitted for import under EPCG scheme under the provisions of the Exim Policy, even for
service providers. Second-hand photocopier machines, air conditioners, diesel generator
sets, etc, can also not be imported under EPCG Scheme under the same EXIM Policy even
if these are less than ten years old.
• Waste generated from the electronic industry is considered as hazardous waste.
Some international responses to e-waste
USA: In September 2003, California passed the “Electronic Waste Recycling Act
of 2003” (SB20), USA’s first comprehensive electronics recycling law, establishing
a funding system for the collection and recycling of certain electronic wastes.
European Union: On January 27, 2003, the EU parliament passed a directive that
requires producers of electronics to take responsibility, financial and otherwise, for
recovery and recycling of E-Waste (Waste from Electrical and Electronic Equipment-
• Japan: Since April 2001, manufacturers must recycle appliances, televisions,
refrigerators, and air conditioners. Under a new law, manufacturers would charge
a recycling fee to consumers.
• China: a law in 2002, requiring compulsory retrieval of used industrial
• Netherlands: Since 1998, It requires manufacturers and importers of electrical
and electronic equipment sold in the country to take back their end-of-life
1. Preliminary
• The rules are applicable to producer, consumer or bulk consumer engaged in the
manufacture, sale, purchase and processing of electronic equipment or
components and to recyclers, collection centres and dismantlers of e-Waste.
Batteries as covered in the Batteries (Manufacture and Handling) Rules 2001
• Radioactive waste as defined in the Atomic Energy Waste.
Ministry of Environment and Forests, Govt. of India (MoEF) Guidelines for disposal
of E-waste
2. Responsibilities
3. Decrease the percentage of the hazardous substances used in the manufacturing
process of electronic equipment. The manufacturing process should not include
the listed elements like lead, chromium, mercury etc. Even if they are used in
severe cases the percentage should be about 0.1% not more than that.
India: e-Waste Management and Handling Rules, 2011
E-waste has to be properly segregated and collected through authorized vendors.
Collection centers are set up to store the e-waste in the right form and in a secure
place as per prescribed standards and procedures ensuring that no damage is done
to the environment. Records have to be maintained to keep a detail of the amount
of e-waste and centers.
The major e-waste generating states:
Midway atoll, bird corpse. Photo: Chris Jordan
What can you do?
Reduce the amount of e-waste being produced, individuals can do
many things:
1. Keep your old electronics longer instead of replacing them
2. If discarding old electronics, be sure to recycle them at a trusted
recycling center
3. Purchase efficient electronics that do not contain hazardous
materials such as mercury and lead.
Related Organizations in India
• E-Parisaraa Pvt. Ltd., Bangalore, Karnataka
• Attero Recycling Pvt. Ltd., Roorkee, Uttarakhand
• Eco Recycling Pvt. Ltd. Andheri (east), Mumbai
• K. G. Nandini, near Bangalore, Karnataka
• Trishyiraya Recycling India Pvt. Ltd., Chennai
• Tess Amm Ltd. Chennai
Hazardous Waste
– Ignitable with a flash point less than 60
– Corrosive
– Toxic, carcinogenic, mutagenic, or teratogenic to humans or
other life-forms.
– Explosive or highly reactive.
Legally, hazardous waste is any discarded liquid or solid waste that
contains substances known to be: Fatal to humans or laboratory
animals in low doses.
Identification: either or both of the following criteria
1. The list provided by government agencies declaring that substance
as hazardous.
2. Characteristics: 1) Ignitibility 2) Corrosivity 3) Reactivity 4)
 Household wastes that can be categorized as hazardous
waste include:
old batteries
shoe polish
paint tins
old medicines
medicine bottles.
Hazardous Waste
• Hospital waste contaminated by chemicals used in hospitals is
considered hazardous.
• These chemicals include formaldehyde and phenols, which are
used as disinfectants.
Hazardous Waste
• In the industrial sector, the major generators of hazardous waste
are the metal, chemical, paper, pesticide, dye, refining, and
rubber goods industries.
• Direct exposure to chemicals in hazardous waste such as mercury
and cyanide can be fatal.
Hospital Waste
• Hospital waste is generated during the diagnosis, treatment, or
immunization of human beings or animals
• It may include wastes like
• Sharps
• Soiled waste
• Disposables
• Anatomical waste
• Cultures
• Discarded medicines
• Chemical wastes
• These are in the form of disposable syringes, swabs, bandages,
body fluids, human excreta, etc.
• This waste is highly infectious and can be a serious threat to
human health if not managed in a scientific and discriminate
• A rough estimation shows that at least ¼ weight of waste
generated in a hospital would be infected
Hospital Waste
Fuel Additives
Polynuclear aromatic
hydrocarbons (PAHs or PNAs)
Common Hazardous Waste
Explosives and propellants
Arsenic (As), Cadmium (Cd), Chromium (Cr), Lead (Pb),
Mercury (Hg); and Cyanide (CN)
Listed hazardous wastes (priority chemicals)
EPA by rule, has specifically listed over 600 hazardous number
Four separate lists classified in the F, K, P, and U industrial waste codes
F-list: The F-list contains hazardous wastes from non-specific sources, The
list consists of solvents commonly used in degreasing, metal treatment baths
and sludges, wastewaters from metal plating operations and dioxin containing
chemicals or their precursors.
Example: methylene chloride (F001), 1,1,1, trichloroethane (F001), Benzene,
toluene (F005)
Solvent mixtures or blends, contain greater than 10% of one or more of the solvents
listed in F001, F002, F003, F004 and F005 are also considered F-listed wastes
K-list: The K-list contains hazardous wastes generated by specific industrial
processes. Examples of industries, which generate K-listed wastes include wood
preservation, pigment production, chemical production, petroleum refining, iron and
steel production, explosive manufacturing and pesticide production
Hazardous Waste
• Management of Hazardous Waste
• Cleaning Up Existing Toxic Waste: The Superfund Program
Old toxic waste dump
Hazardous Waste : Disposal
Hazardous waste that cannot be recycled or converted to
nonhazardous forms regardless of their form (i.e., solid, liquid, or
gas), must be stored by 1) burial in a secured landfill 2) deep-well
injection and 3) surface impoundment.
• Exporting Waste
– Although most industrialized nations have agreed to stop
shipping hazardous and toxic waste to less-developed
countries, the practice still continues.
• Basel Convention in 1994 passed an agreement that
banned the export of hazardous waste.
Hazardous waste landfill
Hazardous / Toxic Waste & Dumping Site
• Industrialized countries have waste management problems
• Developed countries have strict environment regulation norms
• Most attractive option for them- to dump into developing
Timeline of Major Legislation
1970 Clean Air Act
1972 Federal Water Pollution Control Act 1974 Safe
Drinking Water Act
1976 RCRA
1976 TSCA (Toxic Substances Control Act)
1977 Clean Water Act
1980 Superfund
1986 EPCRA (Emergency Planning and Community
Right-To-Know Act)
1. The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 as amended in 1988.
2. Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Rules, 1975.
3. The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Cess Act, 1977, as amended by
Amendment Act, 1991.
4. The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Cess Rules, 1978.
5. The Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1984, as amended by
Amendment Act, 1987. The Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Rules 1982
and 1983.
6. The Environment (Protection) Act, 1986.
7. Hazardous Waste (Management and Handling) Rules,1989 as amended in 2000.
8. Management, Storage and Import of Hazardous Chemical Rules, 1989.
9. Manufacture, Use, Import, Export and Storage of Hazardous Microorganisms,
Genetically Engineered Microorganisms or Cells Rules, 1989.
10. The Public Liability Insurance Act, and The Public Liability Insurance Rules, 1991.
11. The Biomedical Wastes (Management and Handling) Rules, 1995.
12. Municipal Wastes (Management and Handling) Draft Rules, 1999.
Hazardous Wastes Management in India
India has enacted the following laws, regulations and standards
governing the country's environmental protection:
Ground Reality
Though the Hazardous Wastes (Management & Handling) Rules were notified in 1989,
the implementation on the ground has left a lot to be desired. Lack of proper
infrastructure and strict enforcement mechanism has led to hazardous waste still
remaining a grave problem. New emerging wastes and loopholes in the current
legislation have also contributed to this. There are still problems of hazardous waste
not being managed in good environmental conditions, improper dumping and lack of
proper treatment and disposal facilities.
Hazardous Wastes Management in India
India is the first country that has made provisions for the protection
and improvement of environment in its Constitution
source: http://www.toxicslink.org
Super Fund 1980
Superfund National Priorities List (2002)
1234 sites currently listed
259 removed from list
1255 - Sites Listed
332 - Delisted
63 New sites proposed
Superfund = abandoned hazardous sites
1. A response to “The Love Canal”
2. Where does the money come from?
• 70% parties responsible pay cleanup
• Those who own the site now and before
• Those who transported to the site
• 30% paid for a tax on polluting companies and/or state and federal funds
Love Canal
Part One
Part Two
Share of States and Union Territories
in Urban MSW Generated
Waste per Indian city
Major Polluting Industries in India
• Around 2500 tanneries discharge 24 million cu m of waste water
containing high level of dissolved solids and 4,00,000 tonnes of
hazardous solid waste
• 300 distilleries discharge 26 million kilo-litres of spend wash per
year containing several pollutants
• Thermal power plants discharge huge waste materials
With an estimated population of 6 million, Bangalore is among the largest five
cities of India. It generates
around 3000-4000 t/d of USW and a major constituent (72%) of which is organic
Bangalore generates around 3000-4000 t/d of
USW and a major constituent (72%) of which
is organic waste
Source: Chanakya and Sharatchandra, 2005
Bangalore: waste management
Composition of USW found at the
dumpsites (TIDE, 2000)
In September 2000, India framed its first Municipal Solid Waste (Management
& Handling) Rules 2000, which lets both cities and their citizens know their duties
and responsibilities for hygienic waste management. They are based on the March
1999 Report of a Committee for Solid Waste Management in Class 1 Cities of India
to the Supreme Court, which urged statutory bodies to comply with the Report’s
suggestions and recommendations. These also serve as a guide on how to comply
with the MSW Rules. Both Report and Rules, summarized below, are based on the
principle that the best way to keep streets clean is not to dirty them in the first place.
So a city without street bins will ultimately become clean and stay clean. Hence they
advocate daily doorstep collection of “wet” (food) wastes for composting, which is
the best option for India. This is not only because composting is a cost-effective
process practiced since Vedic times, but also because India’s soils need organic
manures to prevent loss of fertility through unbalanced use of chemical fertilizers.
Reprints of this Report, with the MSW Rules 2000, are available from a Committee
member, Mrs Almitra Patel, 50 Kothnur, Bagalur Rd, Bangalore 560077, .
India: Waste Management policy
Littering and throwing of garbage on roads is prohibited. Citizens should keep their wet
(food) wastes and dry (recyclable) wastes within their premises until collected, and must
ensure delivery of wastes as per the collection and segregation system of their city, preferably
by house-to-house collection at fixed times in multi-container handcarts or tricycles (to avoid
manual handling of waste) or directly into trucks stopping at street corners at regular pre-
informed timings. Dry wastes should be left for collection by the informal sector (sold
directly to waste-buyers or given free or otherwise to waste-pickers, who will earn their
livelihood by taking the wastes they need from homes rather than from garbage on the streets.
High - rises, private colonies, institutions should provide their own big bins within their
own areas, separately for dry and wet wastes.
To stop the present unplanned open dumping of waste outside city limits, the MSW Rules have
laid down a strict timetable for compliance: improvement of existing landfill sites by end-2001,
identification of landfill sites for long-term future use and making them ready for operation by
end-2002, setting up of waste-processing and disposal facilities by end-2003, and provision of a
buffer zone around such sites. Biodegradable wastes should be processed by composting,
vermicomposting etc. and landfilling shall be restricted to non-biodegradable inert waste
and compost rejects.
The Rules also require municipalities to ensure community participation in waste segregation (by
not mixing “wet” food wastes with “dry” recyclables like paper, plastics, glass, metal etc) and to
promote recycling or reuse of segregated materials. Garbage and dry leaves should never be
burnt. Biomedical wastes and industrial wastes must not be mixed with municipal wastes.
Routine use of pesticides on garbage has been banned by the Supreme Court on 28.7.1997.
India: Waste Management policy
The Report recommends that cities should provide free waste collection for all slums and
public areas, but charge the full cost of collection on “Polluter-Pays” Principle, from hotels,
eateries, marriage halls, hospitals & clinics, wholesale markets, shops in commercial streets,
office complexes, cattle - sheds, slaughter - houses, fairs & exhibitions, inner-city cottage
industry & petty trade.
Debris and construction waste must be stored within premises, not on the road or
footpath, and disposed of at pre - designated sites or landfills by builder, on payment of full
transport cost if removed by the Municipality.
For improved work accountability, “pin-point” work assignments and 365-day cleaning are
recommended, with fixed beats for individual sweepers, including the cleaning of adjoining
drains less than 2 ft deep. Drain silt should not be left on the road for drying, but loaded
directly into hand-carts and taken to a transfer point . Silt and debris should not be dumped at
compost – plant.
India: Waste Management policy
The quantities of garbage collected and transported need to be monitored against
targets, preferably by citizen monitoring, through effective management information
systems and a recording weigh - bridge: computerized for 1 million+ cities. At least
80% of waste-clearance vehicles should be on-road, and two-shift use implemented
where there is a shortage of vehicles. Decentralized ward – wise composting of
well – segregated wet waste in local parks is recommended, for recycling of
organics and also for huge savings in garbage transport costs to scarce disposal
The Report also recommends that waste-management infrastructure should be a strictly-
enforced pre-condition in new development areas. It advocates temporary toilets at all
construction sites (located on the eventual sewage-disposal line) and restriction of cattle
movement on streets. Livestock should be stall-fed or relocated outside large cities.
The Report’s financial recommendations deserve to be supported by all citizens:
Cities must fulfill their obligatory functions (like waste management) before funding any
discretionary functions, while being granted fiscal autonomy to raise adequate funds. Solid-
waste-management and other charges should be linked to the cost-of-living index, along with
levy of “administrative charges” for chronic littering. Funds should be earmarked for
minimum expenditure on solid waste management: Rs 100 per capita per year in 5-lakh-plus
cities, or a minimum of Rs 50 per capita in smaller towns. Many cities are already providing
conditional funding to residential areas or colonies willing to take responsibility for improved
waste-management of their respective areas.
The Supreme Court intends to monitor compliance with the MSW Rules through the High
Courts in each State. This gives all citizens both the opportunity and the obligation to ensure
that hygienic waste-management becomes a reality, soon.
AHP 14.2.2003
India: Waste Management policy
Waste Treatment Plant
Wastewater Treatment
• Primary treatment holds the sewage in a large containment vessel.
– Heavy solids that sink to the bottom are removed.
– Grease and oils that float to the top are also removed.
– May also be aerated to remove as much of the smell as possible.
• The sludge that is leftover from these treatments is decomposed
with bacteria or composted.
• Secondary treatment adds bacteria to decompose the dissolved
organic matter.
– The bacteria must then be killed once the process is complete. This is
usually done with chlorine.
• Tertiary treatment is any additional treatment, such as the removal
of nitrates and phosphates.
Human sewage is a waste product that is unavoidable, but it can be
treated to minimize environmental impacts.
Wastewater Treatment Plant