Politics & General News

Waste management :a headache to most urban authorities

Human survival depends on ecosystems and mismanagement of the earth’s natural resources poses grave dangers to the biosphere which includes the atmosphere, oceans,soils and forests as well as the global village. Human population may increase and engage in different activities as a means of survival, but the size of the earth does not and will not change.The term solid waste maybe used to refer to municipal waste and can be categorized in seven groups. These are residential (household or domestic waste) ,commercial, institutional, streets sweeping, construction and demolition, sanitation and industrial wastes.Whole municipal waste refers to solid wastes from houses,streets, and public places,shops,offices,hospitals, which are often the responsibility of municipal or other government authorities, solid waste from industrial processes are generally not considered ‘municipal ‘
Societal wastes range from the refuse produced by every family to highly toxic industrial wastes from the production of specialized goods such as electronics,computers,cars,petrochemicals and plastics.Improved standards of living ,population growth and rapid development have resulted into expanded urbanization and increased solid waste generation. However ,increased waste generation is not matching with the capacity of urban centre’s to handle this environmental problem Redcliff Town is a qualifying example of how urban centre’s are failing to control waste management. This has led to accumulation of solid wastes and it has become one of the most pressing issues or burdens to handle,as it requires a lot of financial resources. Urban authorities are responsible for ensuring safe,reliable and cost effective removal and disposal of solid wastes from generation sources to final disposal sites.
“Most urban centres lack storage and collection facilities. In Redcliif town in Zimbabwe solid waste is indiscriminately dumped around the town and most residents have resorted to ‘burning ‘ the wastes dumpsites dotted around the town.There is no incinerator in place to handle special wastes such as clinical wastes and other hazardous wastes generated in the urban centre’s.Therefore, wastes are an inevitable part of human activity.”,said an official from City of Gweru.
What is more significant is that all living organisms, when they die,ultimately become waste.Despite this,nature appears to be able to deal with its own wastes effectively. Natural world is also the recipient of human waste materials.It would appear that most environmental problems arise because the natural world cannot cope with these novel substances. It is evident therefore that for waste management practices have to be undertaken and mostly the disposal methods.Waste disposal methods are seen as instruments for waste management. Ineffective waste management stems out as a result of poor handling, treatment and disposal of waste stems from a variety of economic, social and cultural conditions. With increase in population, there is a resultant expansion in land used for many socio economic activities in cities and towns. The waste produced in low income countries has a higher organic content than waste produced in other areas,resulting in the nature of the waste being denser and more corrosive. The characteristics of the waste are important for knowledge on how to handle it differently. As for waste management I developing urban areas,a common problem is an ineffective and insufficient collection service, which affects health,water quality and aethetes in the areas.Most reasons for waste not being properly managed are poor roads making areas difficult to access,local authorities maybe weak or non existing,making it difficult to organize and administer municipal services and problematic cost recovery which is fee collection. Collection systems must be designed to accommodate the particular conditions of the community and include community involvement in order to function. The waste disposal problem is closely related to population growth and urbanization.
The transport of collected domestic solid waste is severely a major problem in the cities,municipalities and town councils and even though the disposal sites may not be too far away,the combined effect of inadequate roads and other forces result into being a major challenge.

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