Well before we directly jump into the waste segregation and who should do it.

Let’s know the lesser known facts!

Do you really think you generate waste?

I don’t think so!

Let’s dig into it…

Do you know Indore is again ranked as the cleanest city?

Again because this is not the 1st time but 4th time in a row!

According to statistics, in Indore 1200 metric tonnes of waste is generated daily and its distribution is as follows-

A bar chart showing distribution of waste in Indore. The distribution shows negligible amount of non-recyclable waste (0.42%) as compared to recyclable (53.75%) and organic waste (45.83%).
Waste distribution in Indore

You got your answer to the opening question right!

There is actually no considerable amount of waste at all, only if we start taking our waste seriously!

So, Indore transports this non-recyclable waste to cement industries for construction of roads and other purposes.

The recyclable waste such as plastic and glass jars are sent to recycling units or you can even reuse them.

And finally the wet waste is used for making organic compost. No need of chemical fertilizers to grow your vegetables. Cool, isn’t it!

But behind every success there is a MASTERMIND!

Do you know what is it in this case?

100% WASTE SEGREGATION AT SOURCE

Waste segregation alone can solve 60% of the problem!

Thus the waste we discussed above needs to be segregated.

Seems quite easy right! But who will really indulge in it?

Are you ready? Is everyone ready?

Let’s take a Case Study

So in a city, waste segregation is made compulsory to be done at source. And everyone has to abide by it. Necessary awareness drives and the usage of dry and wet bins are also worked on ground.

Image showing the waste categorisation between wet and dry waste.
Dry waste and Wet waste

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/7dxd9d/article28025903.ece/alternates/FREE_810/bluePNG

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/iupzky/article28025904.ece/alternates/FREE_810/greenPNG

But there is no implementation to be seen.

So Anil, who collects waste from houses, is asked about it. In reply he said, “People don’t segregate the waste. And when I ask about the reason, the residents bluntly say that is not their job, rather it was mine”.

And thus, Anil would end up doing the segregation. But obviously not all waste got segregated!                                                 

A resident from the building named Kartik said, “I segregate the waste as dry and wet as per the given guidelines. And only the dry waste is given to the garbage collector, keeping aside the wet waste for composting”.

Whereas Anju Sharma, a resident at the next block claimed, “No real initiative has been taken on waste management. Still, if we segregate the waste, the waste collectors dump it all in a single dustbin where everything gets mixed.”

Another lady Rima said, “I am not aware of segregation and hence I empty the household waste directly into the garbage trucks or keeps it roadside. From where waste collectors pick it up by themselves.” 

Do you see how many perspectives are there? The blame game?! Lack of consciousness and awareness!  And none of them is taking the responsibility for their own doing?

Well I won’t tell you who should do it! Instead I will give some reasoning and leave it to you to decide.

WASTE SEGREGATION,

# By YOU!

Pros

1) Effective segregation

2) Recycling made easier

Thus as we talked earlier almost negligible waste will be generated.

# By SERVERS! (Waste pickers & Recyclers)

Cons

1) Toxicity (heavy metals such as mercury, lead, chromium, arsenic, etc) – neurotoxic and carcinogenic, etc

Read THIS and you will be stunned to see almost every kind of patient residing in them!

2) Health hazards

Because of E-waste like batteries, bulbs, tube lights, etc., metal items, tin cans, scraps, glass bottles, etc

3) Bad health due to living conditions, eating habits, personal hygiene, etc

4) Physical injuries like cuts and pricks

5) Back pain issues due to manual work and pushing of trolleys

6) Lastly, income…quite low

All this pain they take to feed their children.

The worst part is even the young kids aged 13-18 years are exposed to harsh environment damaging their health and which can even lead to stunted development. You see the age, the crucial year where kids should be indulged in studies but …

You know what, you owe to them! They save your money by saving municipality cost, time of collection and transporting to landfills as they scavenge the recyclable material but it all comes at a cost.

Cost you cannot bid for!

Unfortunately, no Pros!

But are we here to take advantage of their helplessness…Pause and Think!

If you are still skeptical try watching this video!

Final words…

It’s high time we take the responsibility in our hands, for the chaos we have created. Otherwise, the cities will be soon converted to landfills inviting lots of infectious diseases which could be worse that one could have ever thought! It even destroys the quality of land, water resulting in environmental degradation and the list of problems is endlesssssssss……

Apart from this do you know this also contributes to climate change? When the waste is dumped in landfills for long time the organic waste decomposes in a process to release methane, 84 times more potent than carbon dioxide.

Also owing to the population increase and the COVID-19, the daily waste is estimated to increase 3.5 times the present by 2050 (NOT FAR AWAY).

Ohh Sorry! COVID-19 waste excluded.

Guess what it will amount to if COVID-19 is taken into consideration! Masks, PPEs and what not!

Okay enough of it!

Now I leave it to you to decide-

Household segregation or landfill - A choice to be made
Which one did you decide?

Source: https://ahmedabadmirror.indiatimes.com/thumb/msid-66912343,width-1200,height-900,resizemode-4/.jpg

Source: https://img.theweek.in/content/dam/week/news/biz-tech/images/2018/3/16/waste-pickers-garbage.jpg

Do let me know in the comments below which one will you choose and why! Looking forward to your cooperation.

Other posts from the same Author

1) Save your favorite polar bears from THIS, before it’s too late!

2)Do you also think Carbon Dioxide is the destructive component in Climate Change?! Not really!

3)5 Reasons how Climate Change is driving Malnutrition and Obesity at the same time

References

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