This is my third post on my “No Waste” initiative. Do read “What happens to our waste?” if you have not already done so. In this post, I will list out the eco-friendly ways we can dispose off our waste so that all the harmful effects can be minimized. They are very easy to implement, and can generate revenue and employment for people too!! Some of the most important things to know about waste management are –
1. Segregation at source – Segregation at source means separating our waste into dry, wet and toxic waste at the source. Which would mean keeping the dry waste (paper, plastic, glass) separate from the wet waste (leftover food, fruit peels, other kitchen waste) and toxic waste (medical waste, e-waste). When we separate our waste and store it separately, it becomes very easy for the next step to kick in. Dry waste can be recycled and reused, Wet waste can be turned into compost and all toxic waste can be disposed off safely. When all these are mixed, neither recycling nor composting can happen and we end up polluting our atmosphere, soil and ground water.
2. Recycling of Dry Waste – Dry waste (paper, plastic, glass) must be further segregated after which they can be sold to the recyclers who will recycle the materials. But as this is only possible if we properly segregate all dry waste, making segregation the key. This sale of dry waste can generate some income for the household, in addition to the fact that this waste will now be recycled and not just dumped in landfills.
3. Composting of Wet Waste – All wet waste (kitchen waste, left over food) can be turned into nutrient rich manure by a process called composting. Composting is the natural decomposition of food waste into manure which can be mixed with the soil to enrich it. It can be used in our home gardens, thus preventing our expense on fertilizers and chemicals.
As you would have seen, if we implement the above steps in our households, we can reduce the waste going out to landfills totally (or by 80-90% atleast). Thats why the term “No Waste“. And yes, it is that simple. Nothing complex. And its a win win situation for all. It will generate employment for people involved in waste collection and recycling, generate income from the waste sold, prevent the expenditure on fertilizers and reduce the waste going out to landfills drastically, thus resulting in a greener planet.
The only thing required here is an initiative to educate people about this and implement this. It has already been successfully implemented in a few places in Bangalore, like Diamond District, Sadashivanagar, Christ College, etc. I am working on a “Call to Action” plan and will be out with it shortly which will give the opportunity to like minded citizens to take bold leadership initiatives in their localities/apartments to implement a “No Waste” plan and do their bit in proper waste disposal.