With every year passing by, the world takes hugesteps towards urbanization. This increasing urban lifestyle produces waste as aby-product. The current estimate of the world cities waste generation is about1.3 billion tonnes per year and this value is said to increase to 2.2 billiontonnes by 2025. Consequently the waste management costs would get doubled too.
This would cause a huge blow to the economy of the low income countries. Astrong link exists between urbanisation, solid waste produced and pollution.Hence a poor waste management could not only affect the health but also thelocal and global environment and finally the economy. Finding ways to disposeand manage this solid waste is a growing concern for the nations,municipalities, corporations and individuals around the world and the globalcommunity at large. This paper is a review of the solid waste management techniquesthat were practiced in the past followed by the current solid waste managementtechniques being practiced in low income, developing and developed countries;the problems associated with them and the framework of the integrated solidwaste management approach.
History of solid waste:It said that aslate as 10,000 B.C the first human societies were formed, this automaticallylead to the production of solid waste. Health concerns, scarcity of resourcesand aesthetics were the main driving forces for the initiation of a properwaste management system. The communities initially started burying the waste inand around their settlements but as the population grew this method wasn’tenough to prevent the spread of odour and diseases.
This caused the communitiesto come up with better and effective methods for disposing the waste. By 2000B.C, the Indus Valley Civilization was the first to have a well-functioningdrainage system i.
e the ancient city of Mohenjo-Daro. The Greeks came next infinding solutions as they banned waste on the streets in 500 B.C and thenfollowed the Chinese; they had various waste officers appointed as early as 200B.C. However there was no segregation of the waste and it was all being dumped alltogether and this was one of the main reason for the spread of variousdiseases.
The Black Death in Europe, which occurred in the early1300s, is saidto have been caused due to the dumping of waste on the streets. After this hugeoutbreak many initiatives were put into place for the proper disposal of thewaste but these turned out to be ineffective because the poor were focused onfeeding themselves and the rich didn’t want to pay to clean up. However due toinsufficient resources people were forced to recycle and reuse items. When SWMprogress finally began, it was driven by five principal factors: public health,the environment, resource scarcity and the value of waste, climate change, andpublic awareness and participation. SWM indeveloping countries: The rapid increasing populationand its associated waste generation increase are causing a lot of problems inmost of the developing countries as they can’t cope with this sudden increase. In these countries, when thebasic need of surviving is a great concern; it is hard for waste management tomake its way as a top priority. Although, this has changed now.
Providing aproper solid waste management is one of the most import services the governmenthas to provide to its citizens. It single handedly takes up a huge portion inthe budget list. Lack of technical skills among the government and municipalauthorities is one of the technical factors that affect the system. And theyfail to provide a better solid waste management because they also lackfinancial means. One of the driving forces for developing a better approach wasthe clean development program under the Kyoto protocol.
‘Carbon credits’provided these developing countries the necessary economy required.The current solid wastemanagement techniques used in most of the developing countries are landfillsand incineration. Open dumping of waste is still practiced is some of thesedeveloping countries. The problem that arises with incineration is that it isnot cost effective and it requires high amounts of energy. The burning ofvarious components of the waste can also cause air pollution.
The ash producedfrom incineration has to be disposed well. When it comes to landfills, it notonly requires land availability but also causes health hazards to the peopleliving around the land. Open dumping creates a breeding spot for a wide varietyof disease causing insects. It does produce a huge quantity of methane gaswhich is a deadly greenhouse gas.In order toovercome these problems large number of studies were conducted from 2005 to2011 to review the solid waste management techniques and the problemsassociated with them in these countries. From these reviews, the IntegratedSustainable Waste Management Model was introduced Integrated solid waste management in developingcountries and developed countries:This majorly emerged from theincreasing problems that were created from landfilling. This system strives todevelop an approach that is not only effective but affordable and acceptablesocially.
It analyses the various problems involved waste management byintegrating each and every aspect. ‘Waste’ is often seen as a negative conceptwhereas in ISWM the term waste is only used when it can’t be used as resource.The word integrated means tocombine components that are separate into one process. In the context of solidwaste, integration means that various elements are integrated into a singletreatment process. In the early 1990s, when most ofthe conventional approaches to waste management were failing in the developingand low-income countries; a workshop was held in Switzerland. During thisperiod, the Dutch government funded WASTE which undertook a six-year UrbanWaste Expertise Programme (UWEP). This further built the concept of integratedsustainable waste management (ISWM). Along the year 2000s this concept got morerefined.
Furthermore the second phase of the UWEP resulted in making sure thatISWM had to be used as a tool for a methodological assessment.This approach focuses on thevarious physical and technical components of the waste system. It furtheranalyses the problems involved in planning and managing sectors, which includestrategies, active participation of the public and son on. The threedimensional approach of ISWM is as shown in the figure.