Did you know that today approximately a whopping 200 billion tonnes of solid waste is generated in our world every year? What is of more concern is that 33% of waste is not wiped off efficiently. If calculated person-wise, each one of us generates around 0.11 two 4.50 kilograms of solid waste. Look around right now, and you will find tonnes of things waiting to be discarded. Waste segregation is of extreme importance to any kind of waste that needs to be banished resourcefully to avoid hazardous outputs. Not all is lost, as there are companies out there that are practically making profits from your waste. No wonder India has a hand in producing 277 million tonnes of its share of waste. That means India is responsible for about 13% of global waste generated per year. Canada, Bulgaria, the United States, Estonia, and Finland are the top five countries that produce the most waste per 2021. Are we only talking about plastic wastage here? Absolutely not. Waste is generated in numerous ways, like burning fossil fuels, fumes from vehicles, landfill waste, and garbage pollution. Plastic simply worsens the already helpless conditions. Suppose we have to narrow it down to the particular leading causes of excessive waste. In that case, overpopulation, urbanization, and surprisingly the boost in technology are also a culprit. A vast population leads to more consumerism which in turn spikes up the waste produced. Technology, especially today, has a substantial impact on almost everyone. So it is a contributing factor in solid waste that remains unabated. What are some other causes of solid waste pollution? Commercial establishments, different kinds of scraps generated by vehicles, agricultural waste, debris left out from new construction sites, demolitions, medical waste, and technological waste are all equally responsible for excessive wastage, which is difficult to decompose.

DICHOTOMY OF WASTE 

There are three types of waste, viz., organic, biomedical, and dry. The following are the simple yet efficient ways of managing waste at home. The first one is the almost ancient saying of “avoid plastic.” Needless to say, this one, go electronic while making your transactions (thanks to the pandemic!). Use strong and sturdy containers for other purposes. Composting kitchen waste at home can be a fun and effective way of becoming environment-friendly right from the comfort of your own house. Composting kitchen waste in your own backyard can not only provide you with good quality manure for plants but also reduce your organic waste. Collecting, processing, manufacturing, and purchasing recycled-content products are the four crucial steps of recycling. Ditch your plastic and replace it with metals or any other biodegradable materials. You would be contributing to the waste management and betterment of the environment. An individual can buy products that require less packaging and reuse whatever one can at the house level.

IDEAS FOR WASTE MANAGEMENT

 Suppose you have an inclination towards creativity and are one amongst the few who hate unnecessary wastage. In that case, the following ideas will come in quite handy. One of the easiest methods of making the best from the waste is using different bottles, including the plastic ones for fabulous home décor. For example, you can seed beautiful plants in the bottle and help the plant grow beautifully and add up to your aesthetics. You can even reuse the huge stack of old newspapers to wrap up gifts or stick them to an entire wall to give your room a vintage look. Interestingly, you can also use newspapers to clean window stains. How? All you need to do is simply mix water and a bit of white vinegar, and you are good to go. Additionally, there is a simple hack almost implemented by everyone. It is reusing old and torn clothes as cleaning rags. They will last you a lifetime! Composting is a common solid waste management method that consists of a biological process. The boon of composting is that it offers both processing and recycling of garbage and sewage sludge which is carried out in a single operation. Composting includes various steps of separation, digestion of the refuse, and size reduction. Waste management and processing are endless topics, and we are almost exhausted after hearing enough about them.

ORGANIZATIONS THAT ARE MAKING THE MOST OF WASTE

Most of us have a widespread misunderstanding that the waste generated by us is useless and cannot be reused in any manner. Well, that’s not the case as there are too many companies which, believe it or not, make humongous profits by using up the waste in the right ways. Let’s take a look at such companies. Advanced disposal is a US-based company that is full time dedicated to environmental services. The company integrates solid waste collection that is not hazardous in nature, collects, transfers, and recycles it. Advanced disposal consists of several services such as commercial waste, residential waste collection, and recycling facilities, to name a few. Biffa Group is another company that provides different recycling services such as dry mixed recycling, single-stream recycling, integrated waste management, resource management, and numerous more. Such companies make a huge profit by providing services related to managing and recycling waste. Similar to these, other popular companies are Clean Harbours, Inc., Covanta Holding Corporation, Hitachi Zosen Corporation, and Suez Environment S.A., the largest waste management companies globally. The U.S. waste management companies comprise an annual revenue that is as high as 100 billion USD. In this, fifty-five percent of the total revenue is held only by a collection of waste. The remaining forty-five percent is made up of waste disposal along with treatment and recycling. Attero, Cashify, The Shakti Plastic industries are some budding top recycling companies that hail from India.

The next time you catch yourself thinking about your “useless” waste, remind yourself of all the profits you are helping these companies make along with doing your bit (segregation and other fun things) for the environment without actually doing anything.

by Harshita Kirnalli  

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