Tuesday, August 07, 2012

World: Alarming rise in amount and costs of waste

video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player

A new World Bank study projects a 70% global increase in urban solid waste – with developing countries facing the greatest challenges.

Developing country cities, already coping with burgeoning populations, scarce financial resources, and limited capacity to manage environmental issues, are facing a sharp rise in the amount and costs of garbage that they will be required to deal with by 2025. A new report from the World Bank’s Urban Development department estimates the amount of municipal solid waste (MSW) will rise from the current 1.3 billion tonnes per year to 2.2 billion tonnes per year by 2025. Much of the increase will come in rapidly growing cities in developing countries.

The report, What a Waste: A Global Review of Solid Waste Management, for the first time offers consolidated data on MSW generation, collection, composition, and disposal by country and by region.The report notes that municipal solid waste management is the most important service a city provides. In low-income countries, MSW is often the largest single budget item for cities, and one of the largest employers. A city that cannot effectively manage its waste is rarely able to manage more complex services such as health, education, or transportation.

The report says that a number of practical approaches could be applied in most cities, including:
  • Public education to inform people about their options to reduce waste generation and increase recycling and composting;
  • Pricing mechanisms (such as product charges) to stimulate consumer behavior to reduce waste generation and increase recycling;
  • User charges tied to the quantity of waste disposed of, with (for example) consumers separating recyclables paying a lower fee for waste disposal; and/or
  • Preferential procurement policies and pricing to stimulate demand for products made with recycled post-consumer waste.

No comments: