Waste management across the world has become a pressing issue. With an exponential rise in population over the last few centuries, the Earth has accumulated massive amounts of waste without a proper disposal system. India alone creates 62 million tonnes of recyclable and non-recyclable waste per annum according to information from the Press Information Bureau.
This waste is broadly classified into organic, biomedical, and dry (recyclable) waste. Of all this waste generated, less than 60% is collected from the household for processing, resulting in a mere 15% of our waste being processed properly. It is the responsibility of every individual to be more organised and plan their waste disposal efficiently. This article will help you understand waste management methods as well as give you tips for organic waste management at home.
Simple and Effective Ways of Waste Management at Home
If every household made an effort to plan and segregate their waste, waste management would become much simpler. Here we explain how to manage household waste competently. The first step is to reduce waste in the house. The next step involves reusing or recycling material. Read on to understand how it can be done.
1. Avoid Plastics
It can be difficult to manage plastic waste as it is not recyclable. This is one of the primary reasons why you should avoid plastic bags. Carry your own shopping bag when you go to the grocery shop. Do not use plastic containers to store kitchen items either. Use glass for storage. It is healthier for your family and for the environment.
2. Buy Food That Has Minimal Packaging
Shop at the ‘bulk buy’ section of the grocery store. Rice, pulses, and other essentials can be bought without plastic packaging. Food that comes in multi-layered packaging can increase the waste in your house. Pick products that do not include so much packing. For example- you don’t need the box of the toothpaste. So, pick a paste that comes without the carton. It will help you dispose of home waste effectively.
3. Compost Your Kitchen Waste
An eco-friendly waste management method is to compost your organic waste. Invest in a good composting bin and make rich compost from your kitchen waste. This will reduce your organic waste and leave you with quality manure for your gardens.
4. Perform Transactions Electronically So That You Can Minimise Use of Paper
Transact electronically. Ask for a soft copy of bills on your email address rather than a hard copy. Remind merchants not to print your copy of POS transactions while shopping. Transfer money through NEFT or RTGS to avoid printing chequebooks. This will cut down the amount of recyclable paper waste in your house and teach your child a little about the importance of household waste management.
5. Consider Making Soaps and Detergents in Your Own Home
Almost all detergents and cleaning liquids come in plastic packaging that cannot be recycled. The internet is full of assistance if you want to make your washing soaps, detergents, and bathroom cleaners at home. You will reduce plastic waste by doing this, and you will end up with chemical free, home-made detergents.
6. Repurpose Sturdy Containers and Recycle other Materials
Most glass and tin containers can be reused to store some other item that it was originally intended for. You can also reuse paper bags as bin liners to throw garbage. Use both sides of paper for printing or use the clean side to make your lists or have your baby do some colouring. This will help you curb the solid waste accumulation in your house.
7. Donate Items Whenever Possible
Make sure that you give away items that are in good condition but are of no use to you. There are several schools, orphanages, and shelters that welcome donations of usable items like blankets, pencils, books, clothing, and shoes. Do not hoard items in your house. It increases clutter and makes waste management a very difficult task.
8. Dispose of Hazardous Waste in a Responsible Manner
Managing bio waste needs care and caution. It is unwise to dump material like batteries, medical syringes, unused medicine in a careless manner. The chemicals leech into the soil and can become toxic for people living in that area. Plants absorb these toxins too, and we consume vegetables that are laden with chemical waste from the soil.
The key takeaway for better waste management is to recycle glass, metal, clothing, and certain plastics. Leftover food should be composted else it decays in the soil and produces methane gas which is toxic to life. Be thrifty and use old rags for wiping, washing etc., and avoid buying overly packaged food. If every household made a conscientious effort to manage household waste, we could put an end to the piling garbage at our street corners, and in our oceans, and water bodies. So make an effort to manage your household waste for a greener tomorrow!