Management of Solid Waste is an essential and mandatory duty of the Urban Administrators. The Supreme Court had directed the state to take measures for the safe disposal of the Solid Waste consequently. Implementation of Solid Waste Management and handling Rules – 2001 had been made mandatory by the GoI.
Even after 6 years of passage of Act, it is not implemented in full length. House to House Garbage Collection is not 100%.Source segregation is not practiced in many municipalities. The garbage is still burnt and many municipalities lack the processing facilities. All these things put together make the urban environment hazardous. Recent Garbage crises in Kerala and spread of mosquito related deceases in various parts of the country have reminded the importance of management of Solid Waste.
Unless and until the Solid Waste is safely disposed the ambience of Urban Environment is not possible.
What is Solid Waste?
Solid Waste is defined as the material not useful to the citizen by any means. Hence the citizen throws it negligently as it is not useful to him without recognizing the damage by negligent disposal.
As the people do not recognize the advantage or disadvantages of Solid Waste disposal, they still habituated to follow practices such as burning, non-segregation, open littering, throwing into drains. Even the Municipalities are not far behind in following such practices.
WHERE TO START?
As the redundant practices at citizen and Municipality level is in vogue, the logical initialization is attitudinal change in the Urban Administrators. They should believe them selves that they can implement the Best practices of the Solid Waste Management to tide over the crises of Solid Waste mis- management.
If they believe in themselves, the next logical step is to storm the brains of subordinate staff and consequently it percolate to people.
House-to-House advertisement, SHG meetings, Ward level meetings, school children awareness programmes through various communicative methods are key to disseminate the information about the importance of SWM activity. Without the participation of the people, anything is near impossible. Various agencies are ready to help in organizing the awareness programmes to people.
The next logical step is the arrangements for the house-to-house Garbage collection and Segregation at the Source.
The proper arrangements should be made for the regular visits of the houses for collecting the Garbage on regular basis. On the basis of the convenience either Cycle Rikshaw or Auto or Tractor should be used for the HHGC. But the result shows that the tractor is the easiest mode for collection of HHG, where the lanes are above 15’ width.
In commercial areas, we can keep the trolley of tractor in the night itself and disposing the same as first trip. In the vegetable, fruit market and meet market similar strategy can be followed, but with little difference is that the SW involved in the later case is mostly wet waste. It is extremely useful in composting.
The TFC grants provide the precious opportunity to strengthen the infrastructure for Solid Waste activities. Instead of buying the dustbins and dumper bins, Municipal Commissioners must concentrate on the materials which helps to implement the Solid Waste Rules, as per statute, such as Pulveriser, Vermi Compost sheds, development of Compost Yard, transfer stations, etc.
HOW TO BRING PARADIM SHIFT IN WORKERS:
Without the help of the workers the Solid Waste activity is next to impossible. Municipal Commissioner has to win the hearts of workers by welfare measures. He must determine to pay the salaries of his staff on the very first day of the mouth. To clear off the arrear debts of the staff he should also provide loans to staff. (When the family Budgeting is done to SHG members, similar exercise must be done to our own workers). If funds allow even the loans from municipality for possible purposes should be arranged.
Since the Municipal workers works in the unhygienic atmosphere, the health of them is very crucial. They should be facilitated with the medical camps. Yoga is one of the best methods to tide over the ill practices in public health workers. It will bring the over all development in them.
COMPOST YARD :
The key ingredient to taken up the disposal of Waste is land for the composting. So far 39 Municipalities do not have land for composting and Municipalities have the deficit land.
The Dry waste such as paper, plastic, and glass, etc can be reused. The best way to dispose over the Wet Waste is composting or Vermi Composting. The ideal way for improving the quality of composted material is to segregate plastic effectively. Where large quantity of organic material such as dung, vegetable waste, food waste is available, Bio -methenation is the best method to follow.
Last but not the least, Municipal commissioner should not allow more Waste generation. Using of cloth or jute bags instead of plastic bags will help in such direction. The plastic creates much have by chowking drains and it doesn’t allow the water from percolating.
To conclude, the SWM is an activity where Municipal Commissioner can win the hearts of the people by effective implementation. The advantages of SWM are innumerable to people, municipality and nation too. Hence, Urban Administrators must strive to implement SWM Rules – 2000.
Municipal Commissioner should also convince the advantages of the new system of collection to the workers. I am reminding you as below.
In old system workers have to lift the unclean Solid Waste, but in new system they collect the Solid Waste in cleaner condition. They can demand citizens to not to throw the garbage. Health, life expectancy of workers is ensured in the new system.
Sustainability: The sustainability of the initiative is crucial than making it success. In this regard, the practices should be made institutionalized. It should not be person dependent. Another aspect is economic viability. There shall be User Charges for the services rendered by the Urban Local Body. In absence of User Charges, it would be tough to meet the small expenditures also.