Solid waste management

Solid Waste Management (SWM) throughout the world witnesses stern impediments to grapple. Globally, municipal waste has touched to almost 1.3 billion tons/year and is expected to be doubled by 2025. This would entail a significant increase in per capita waste generation rates, from 1.2 to 1.42 kg/person/day in the next decade. The trend seems even worse in Asian countries where management practices are not up to the desired standards. Pakistan is one of them, the sixth most populous country, generates 20.24 million tons annually where average 5 million people die every year due to waste associated diseases. This has made SWM a mammoth and daunting task to cope with. In a similar vein, followed by other factors such as lack of urban planning, infrastructure, public awareness and mismanagement of existing resources – root cause of exasperating the SWM situation in the country. To mitigate these impacts, there is a dire need to contrive a plan on waste recycling which is hardly practised in Pakistan. The cliché and mantra often being used that is reduce, reuse and recycle when it comes to deal with worst-case scenarios. In developed world, recycling has been adapted as sustainable practise in order to minimize environmental degradation. Lately, Europe and the US are recycling their waste about 41% and 32%. China is also investing US 6.3 billion dollar and making commendable efforts to achieve 30% recycling of its waste by 2030. Similarly, Sweden is almost at its best and claims to recycle more than 99% of household waste in one form to another.
HAIDER ALI
Lahore

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