The generation of Municipal Solid Waste in
huge quantities is a major problem in the fast growing cities as well as
villages. Apart from that, the lack of waste management has further aggravated
the problem of pollution and spread of diseases. The problems in question are:
No segregation at source, dumping, land filling, broken bins, lack of awareness
and expertise etc. With the widespread use of technology in today’s times,
these problems can be effectively addressed and awareness can be created on a
mass scale. Techniques of waste segregation, composting both aerobic and
vermicomposting, can be taught. Also keeping in mind the fast-paced lifestyle
of the citizens of India, many may not be able to practice these techniques on
an individual level, therefore a door-to-door waste collection and segregation
service can further solve the problem. This paper proposes a mobile application
for the Android platform that provides this service to counter waste
mismanagement and throw light on its contents as well as implementation. The
waste collected from the user of this application will be exchanged for cash
that will be transferred electronically to him/her, thereby encouraging maximum
KeywordsIndex terms: Solid Waste
Management, e-Commerce, Android application, Door-to-door service, Segregation
at source, Waste Management awareness, Composting at Home.
The rapidly plummeting population in India
has resulted in an exponential increase in the consumption rate of the masses.
With an ever-increasing population of 1.6 billion
and a population density of approximately 382 per sq km1, the population
pressure makes its increase in consumer waste generation. With a growth rate of
nearly 7 % in the last 20 years2, the solid waste generation is expected to
rise even more in the coming years. The solid waste generated on a micro-level
is termed as Municipal Solid Waste (MSW). More than 90% of the MSW generated in
India is dumped in landfilling areas and disposed in an improper manner. This
has a direct impact on the environment and results in the spread of various
diseases and health issues. The status report of Central Pollution Control
Board CPCB states that India produced around 0.143 million tons per day from
which only 23% was properly processed 2. The MSW that is dumped in open
grounds decomposes to form methane, a greenhouse gas which contributes to
climate change. The per capita of municipal solid waste (MSW) generated daily,
in India ranges from about 100g in small towns to 500g in large towns 3.
Before delving into details about MSW, we
shall first list the different types of Solid wastes. This shall give us an
insight in solving the problem about segregation at source.
Solid wastes, from a general perspective
can be classified as follows:
Classification of Solid wastes:
This category of wastes comprises the solid
waste that originate from households. These wastes are generated as a
consequence of household’s activities such as cooking, cleaning, repairs,
hobbies and redecoration and contain empty containers, packaging, clothing,
book, writing paper, and furnishings. Residents in developed countries
sometimes discard bulky wastes such as furniture and large appliances which
cannot be repaired and used.
Included in this category are solid wastes
that originate from offices, wholesale and retail stores, restaurants, hotels,
markets, warehouses and other commercial establishments.
This term applies to waste that is
collected from streets, walkaways, alleys, and vacant areas. Street waste
includes paper, cardboard, plastic, dirt, leaves and other vegetable matter
discarded by the road users. It also included the waste left by vehicles moving
over the roads.
Ashes are used for cooking and other domestic uses, produced from the
burning of charcoal, wooden articles, coal as well as coke. It is also produced
as residue from institutions and small industrial organizations. It is
classified as industrial waste when it is produced in large quantities at power
The wastes which are dangerous physically, chemically and biologically
and which origin from industries, institutes or consumers are known as
Hazardous wastes.. It is included in solid wastes since it is stored in solid
containers, even if its active agents are liquid or gases. Common examples:
solvents, pesticides or paints which mix with municipal waste and become part
of urban waste.
A look at a few statistical records give
further insights about waste generation in India.
PERCENT-WISE DISTRIBUTION OF
MUNICIPAL SOLID WASTE IN KOLKATA
Sources of Wastage
Percentage ( % )
Commercial and market waste
PER-CAPITA GENERATION RATE OF MSW FOR
MSW COMPOSITION AT KOLKATA DURING 1970,
1995 & 20074
One of the major challenges in Solid Waste
Management is to address these problems in complete detail and come up with a
practical solution that can be implemented on a mass scale and which is also
Segregation at Source:
One of the major factors for garbage
generation is that waste that is generated is not segregated. Segregation at
source refers to separation of different kinds of waste such as plastic, glass,
paper, kitchen waste etc. right after it is generated and before it is dumped
into the garbage bin. Segregation primarily is categorized into Wet and Dry
waste. Further, within the Dry waste category, each item is collected
separately For eg: Glass is collected in a separate container, Paper in a
separate, Dust in another etc.
However, this problem can be solved by
implementing the Coloured Bins method of segregation. In this method, a unique
colour code is used for each item and the bin is coded with that colour such
that, that particular item is collected ONLY in that bin. Likewise, a colour
scheme can be devised to implement this technique of segregation.
1) Garden waste are indicated by green bins
waste are indicated by picture signs.
is indicated by blue bins.
plastics indicated by orange bins
5) Hard items
ranging from metal, plastic, unbroken glass etc. belong in red bins.
in lavender bins.
in pink bins.
hazardous needles and broken glass in yellow bins.
9) Hair and
dust and sand in beige bins.
In many metropolitan cities, open, uncontrolled
and poorly managed dumping is commonly practiced, giving rise to serious
environmental degradation. More than 90% of MSW in cities and towns are
directly disposed of on land in an unsatisfactory manner. Such dumping activity
in many coastal towns has led to heavy metals rapidly leaching into the coastal
waters. In larger towns or cities like Delhi, the availability of land for
waste disposal is very limited 5. In the majority of urban centers, MSW is
disposed of by depositing it in low-lying areas outside the city without
following the principles of sanitary landfilling. Compaction and leveling of
waste and final covering by earth are rarely observed practices at most
disposal sites, and these low-lying disposal sites are devoid of a leachate
collection system or landfill gas monitoring and collection equipment. All of
the infectious waste disposed at hospitals is dumped at disposal sites since no
segregation at source takes place.
C) Lack of
This problem is at the core of all MSW
mis-management. A major part of the Indian population does not have proper
knowledge and skill to dispose every-day waste. Dumping in street niches, or on
the road is a common habit. However, this attitude has to be changed as a
primary measure to counter garbage generation. Firstly, the people need to be educated
and made aware of the consequences of dumping waste and brought to their
notice, the direct co-relation between their unhygienic habits/practices and
the rampant diseases and damage to the environment. Outreach is a very
important aspect of waste management in India, as the awareness on proper
depositing of waste into receptacles is not clearly understood or widely
practiced. Municipal dumpsters gives the impression that organized waste
management is an unpleasant, unsightly and health hazardous practice. This only
intensifies the cultural concept that waste is something not to be associated
with, or it is a problem that is too big to be tackled. This forces individuals
to deal with their waste in extremely non eco-friendly ways, such as burning or
dumping indiscriminately on land or in water. Thus, public health concerns
become aggravated. Lack of awareness among individuals affects their whole
community; as people leave their own devices unchecked. Waste management needs
to be understood as resource management, protection, and utilization. 6
As a secondary measure, one can decompose
their solid waste at home using various techniques like Aerobic composting and
Vermicomposting. These techniques can be taught to the people as part of
educating them with techniques to manage garbage.
The bacterial conversion of the organics present
in MSW in the presence of air under hot and moist conditions is called composting,
and the final product obtained after bacterial activity is called compost (humus),
which has very high agricultural value. It is used as fertilizer, and it is nonodorous
and free of pathogens. As a result of the composting process, the waste volume can
be reduced to 50–85%5. The composting methods may use either manual or
mechanical means and are accordingly termed as a manual or mechanical process.
Manual composting is carried out in smaller urban centers and mechanical
composting plants have been set up in big Indian cities.
Vermicomposting involves stabilization of
organic waste through the joint action of earthworms and aerobic
microorganisms. Initially, microbial decomposition of biodegradable organic
matter occurs through extra cellular enzymatic activity (primary decomposition).
Earthworms feed on partially decomposed matter, consuming five times their body
weight of organic matter per day. The ingested food is further decomposed in
the gut of the worms, resulting in particle size reduction. The worm cast is a
fine, odorless and granular product. This product can serve as a bio fertilizer
The ever-increasing issue of garbage
dumping and littering has been a major concern for urban residential
settlements and corporate offices. The health and well-being of citizens is at
risk since such dumping and littering causes breeding of mosquitos and spreads
many diseases like dengue, malaria, etc. An ideal solid waste management system
implements waste picking and disposing in an organized and effective manner.
Such an objective can be fulfilled by
calling for active and direct interaction with the people. It helps in
controlling the waste at the source. The confidence of the people is gained and
they will be invited to participate. The residents communicate directly to the
system which acts as a middle-man between the residents and scrap companies.
The system functions through an Android
application where the user of the application can sell his solid-waste to the
organization running the application. This approach not only will boost the
peoples participation but will also stop them from littering and take waste
management seriously as it will help them make a small earning that too, at the
convenience of their doorstep. Corporate companies, keeping in mind the
well-being of their valuable employees, will volunteer to dispose waste via the
medium if this application and further contribute to effective prevention of
waste littering and pollution.
The aforementioned problem is not only
solved but is also expected to drastically reduce pollution and prevent further
mismanagement of garbage/waste.
android application shall run on a stable internet connection provided either
by a Wi-Fi or a mobile data connection. The application will register the user on
the first use and will ask the user to link his/her bank account to his account
within the application. Also, the user is asked to enter his location/address
which will be used for picking up solid-waste from the user. The user will be
asked to choose a category between Solid waste, Compostable matter and
Hazardous waste. After that, the user shall choose the items he wishes to sell
from a drop-down list of waste materials that fall in the chosen category.
Finally the user enters the quantity by weight. Also, the user specifies the
timing preference for collection. The application gives a final review of the
items the user wants to sell and asks for a confirmation. Once confirmed by the
user, the application sends a request to the system which then looks for
collectors within the area specified by the user for the given time period. The
system then notifies the user within the application and through SMS
acknowledging the pick-up request and the arrival time of the collector.
Once collected the user can track the
progress of the garbage to the scrap company’s warehouse. After the garbage is
handed over to the company, the cash transfer process is started and reaches
the user’s account within 24 hours of pickup and after reaching the warehouse.
The cash is transferred to the user and he/she is notified through the
application as well as SMS text message.
The application also intends to share the
work load of the Municipal Department and provide employment to many.
Rates per kg.(in Rs)
(varies as per type)
Thus, in conclusion of this paper we would
like to cover all the points which are discussed in detail above. We first
looked at the past and present situation of the Solid waste management in
India, and established the major problems that are created and faced there-in.
Then, we enlisted the major issues such as No Segregation at source, Land filling
and Lack of Awareness and the solutions to those problems. Thirdly, we
mentioned the decomposition methods that can be adopted on an individual level.
Finally, we proposed the Android application, that can be used to provide
door-to-door waste collection service which will further solve the problem of
garbage generation on a mass scale.
1 Census.(2011). Registrar General
Of India. Retrived from http://censusindia.gov.in/2011-prov-results/data
files/india/Final PPT 2011 chapter3.pdf
of Environmnet, Forest and Climate Change (2015). “Action Plan for Management
of Municipal Solid Waste”. Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB). Available from
Singhal and S. Pandey , “Solid waste management in India: Status and
future directions”, TERI Information Monitor on Environmental Science
(TIMES), vol. 6(1), pp. 1-4, 200l.
4 A Holistic Approach for Integrated Solid Waste Management
System of Kolkata Municipality Corporation Area(IEEE 2011)
5 Municipal solid waste management in Indian cities – A review(ELSEVIER
6 A System Design for Solid Waste Management: A Case study of an
implementation in Kerala(IEEE 2017)