According to popular definitions, municipal waste management pertains to domestic and municipal waste managed and collected by or on behalf of municipalities. Waste, such as household waste (including bulky items), from businesses, office buildings, institutions, small enterprises, yard and garden waste, street sweepings, contents of litter containers, and market cleansing waste, are categorised as municipal waste. The scope of municipal solid waste covers both commercial and domestic waste generated in notified municipal areas, in either solid or semi-solid form, excluding hazardous industrial waste but including treated bio-medical waste. Waste is characterised as unwanted and non-usable materials that have no value. Municipal waste comprises the everyday items discarded by the public. It can be categorised into three types as per the Chemical Characteristics of Municipal Waste: biodegradable, recyclable, and hazardous domestic waste.
To effectively utilise solid wastes as fuel or for other purposes, it is crucial to understand the different chemical characteristics of municipal waste. Some of these essential traits include:
The factors determining the Chemical Characteristics of Municipal Waste:
The littering of municipal solid waste is strictly prohibited in cities, towns, and urban areas designated by the State Governments. To enforce this prohibition and ensure compliance, the municipal authority shall undertake the following measures:
Municipal authorities must establish and maintain storage facilities to ensure the surroundings remain hygienic and sanitary. The following criteria should be considered during the establishment and maintenance of storage facilities:
Municipal authorities must implement appropriate technologies, or a combination thereof, to effectively utilise waste and reduce the burden on landfills. The following criteria should be considered:
If the municipal authority or the facility operator intends to use other advanced technologies, they should approach the Central Pollution Control Board to obtain the prescribed standards before applying for authorisation.
The practice of landfilling will be limited to non-biodegradable and inert waste and other waste that cannot be recycled or processed biologically. Landfilling will also be permitted for residues from waste processing facilities, and pre-processing rejects based on the chemical characteristics of municipal waste. However, landfilling mixed waste should be avoided unless it is deemed unsuitable for waste processing. In unavoidable situations or until alternate facilities are installed, landfilling will follow appropriate regulations.
Due to the pollution and health hazards associated with the disposal of municipal solid wastes, the Pollution Control Boards are responsible for encouraging civic authorities to manage these wastes properly. While the primary responsibility for solid waste management lies with local municipal authorities, the Pollution Control Boards should collaborate closely by conducting essential surveys and offering technological support. The Central Pollution Control Board and State Pollution Control Boards at the national and state levels are tasked with disseminating information and raising awareness among relevant authorities and the public.
The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and State Pollution Control Boards (SPCBs) have been making efforts, within their authorised powers under relevant Acts and Rules, to encourage local authorities to implement appropriate measures for the treatment and disposal of domestic sewage and municipal solid waste. To establish a systematic approach for effective municipal waste (sewage and solid waste) management, the CPCB issued directives to all SPCBs under section 18 of the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974.
The following rules and regulations are in effect in the country:
Anyone involved in waste management activities, including solid waste management, must obtain authorisation from the pollution control board. They need to seek prior approval from the SPCB/PCC by applying in Form I of the SWM Rules. The SPCB will review the authorisation proposal and conduct relevant inquiries upon receiving the Form I application from the local body or any authorised agency. Within 60 days, the Board can issue the authorisation in Form II to the local body, facility operator, or any other authorised agency designated by the local body. This authorisation will include compliance criteria and environmental standards outlined in Schedule I and II, along with any additional conditions, as necessary. The State Pollution Control Board or pollution control committee will oversee and ensure adherence to the environmental standards and requirements outlined in Schedule I and II of the Rules for waste processing and disposal sites.
Understanding the chemical characteristics of municipal waste is crucial for effective waste management and environmental protection. From lipids and carbohydrates to proteins and natural materials, each component of municipal waste demands specific treatment and disposal strategies. Non-combustibles, heating value, ultimate analysis, and proximate analysis further contribute to assessing waste disposal options. By recognising and addressing the diverse chemical traits of municipal waste, we can strive towards more sustainable waste management practices, minimising environmental impact and promoting a cleaner, healthier future for our communities. It is recommended to take expert advice to learn about the kinds of documents and compliances required as per the Chemical Characteristics of Municipal Waste.
Read our Article : Understanding Solid Waste Management: A Comprehensive Guide
The chemical characteristics of solid waste encompass moisture content, volatile solids, ash content, CHNSO content, calorific value, and heavy metals.
The primary constituents of municipal solid waste (MSW) include food waste, paper, plastic, textiles, metal, and glass. Additionally, collected waste may also consist of demolition and construction debris, along with small amounts of hazardous waste, such as batteries, electric light bulbs, automotive parts, discarded medicines, and chemicals.
In devising a system, the critical attributes of municipal solid waste (MSW) that need consideration are its physical composition, moisture content, compacted unit weight, and permeability.
The chemical attributes of solid waste comprise moisture content, volatile solids, ash content, CHNSO content, calorific value, and heavy metals.
Chemical treatment involves the use of certain chemicals, like acids, bases, oxidisers, reducers, etc., to minimise its hazardous characteristics. This process also enables the recovery of valuable byproducts from hazardous wastes, ultimately reducing the overall expenses associated with waste disposal.
Municipal solid waste consists of a diverse range of materials, such as food, glass, textiles, metals, and plastics. Its complex nature is influenced by factors like location, culture, legislation, economics, and waste management practices, leading to variations in its characteristics.
The primary physical attributes assessed in waste include (1) density, (2) size distribution of components, and (3) moisture content.
Municipal solid waste (MSW) encompasses all discarded items from households and businesses that are no longer useful to people. These waste materials are commonly referred to as trash or garbage and consist of items like food, paper, plastics, textiles, leather, wood, glass, metals, sanitary waste from septic tanks, and various other types of waste.
The scope includes household waste, comprising bulky waste and similar waste from commercial establishments, trade, office buildings, institutions, and small businesses.
Physical properties encompass density and moisture content, while chemical characteristics include lipids, carbohydrates, proteins, natural fibres, and synthetic organic materials.