The Growing Problem
With the growing world population and our modern lifestyle choices, waste management is becoming extremely difficult to manage and is directly linked to the environmental impact.
Currently, majority of our waste ends up at landfill sites which are now becoming saturated. To escalate the problem, each year we add a further 2 billion tons to these sites.
World Bank Group, ‘what a waste 2.0’:
Open dumping is prevalent in low-income countries, where landfills are not yet available. About 93% of waste is burned or dumped on open ground and waterways in low-income countries.
The conventional methods of disposing waste through landfills have
numerous ENVIRONMENTAL and OPERATIONAL drawbacks
- Landfill waste releases amongst other gases, both Carbon Monoxide and Methane gas. These emissions are directly causing an adverse impact on our environmental. These greenhouse gases are poisons and highly flammable and are giving rise to global warming as a result causing droughts, impact on weather, rising sea temperature and sea levels, etc.
- Plastic waste takes more than 100 years to breakdown.
- Oceans & our waterways becoming polluted with illegal dumping.
- Open ground waste burning is polluting the air and has high CO2 emissions.
- Spread of diseases from illegal landfill sites.
- Leachate polluting our ground water and drinking water.
Operational and Costs
- Globally, $205 Billion spent on solid waste management in 2019. This is projected to increase to $375 Billion by 2025 – Where most of the cost will be borne by developing countries.
- Landfills are costly to sustain and need to be maintained for a further 30 years after closure.
- High costs related to transporting waste to the landfill sites. Existing landfills.
- Existing landfills are slowly becoming saturated and are expected to reach maximum saturation within 10-20 years.
- Running out of available land for landfill sites. New land will have to be made available which could be otherwise used for better use.
- Landfill sites are designed to store waste for an extremely long period rather than disposing it.