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Present challenges of municipal solid waste management in Gujarat

Describe about the Present challenges of municipal solid waste management.

In  compliance with the requirement provided in the given assignment a sincere attempt shall be shortly untaken to represent an effective municipal solid waste management strategy. Vapi a city located in the Valsad district of Gujarat of India has been considered in this respect. The municipal solid waste management strategy shall be formulated keeping in mind the present demographic and geographical condition of Vapi. This particular city of Gujarat has been enlisted as the second largest city after Surat situation in the southern region of the state. Vapi is also identified as one of the most developed city in Gujarat. According to the data produced by population census study the population if Vapi is 163, 630 for the year 2011 (Censusindia.gov.in, 2016). The subsequent sections of this assignment shall focus on development of a strategic planning framework along with identification and evaluation options for solid waste management. Additionally an action plan of municipal solid waste management for Vapi shall also be included. This present problems and future challenges with respect to municipal solid waste management of the concerned region shall also be highlighted.

The rapid emergence of urbanization along with a progressive growth in the population of India has identified the practice of municipal solid waste management as one of the major environmental problem whereby the uncontrolled generation of municipal solid waste has produced hazardous impact on the urban population of India. According to the survey data produced about 90% of the municipal solid waste are found to be unscientifically dump in open area and landfills posing a threat to public health. In this context it is important to highlight that India generates about 12 million tons of inert waste products on annual basis that is estimated to form about one third of the total municipal solid waste generated (Status and challenges of municipal solid waste management in India: A review, 2016).

Citing the example of Gujarat which is one of the most industrially progressed states of India it is evident that with a municipal population of more than 8,443, 962 the state generates more than 3805 tonnes of municipal solid waste per day. Vapi being one of the industrially progressed cities of Gujarat is also found to be associated with generation of huge amount of municipal solid waste. Hence the immense pressure of population that is responsible for production of huge amount of municipal solid waste from household and generation of industrial waste from the industries can be considered as the present day challenges towards the practice of municipal solid waste management. Hence the primary aspects with respect to municipal solid waste management in Indian scenario revealed that shortage of proper waste storage at source, absence of effective waste segregation system that is helpful for recycling of wastes. Additionally lack of proper doorstep waste collection system in the residential area also result in improper waste disposal practices that are often unhygienic (Sharholy et al., 2008). Moreover the absence of regular street sweeping, inadequate system of secondary waste storage and absence of proper waste treatment system can also be highlighted in the respect. Presence of improper open dumping grounds for disposal of solid waste is also one the major challenges of the city.  

Future challenges with respect to effective municipal solid waste management

As Gujarat shall remain the industrial hub of the country the future challenges with respect to municipal solid waste management shall also remain the same. The future issues in this aspect shall cover the problem related with disposal of hazardous solid waste products that are mainly generation from the petrochemical, pharmaceutical, fertilizer, paint, asbestos, chemical and engineering industries. Hence effective disposal of hazardous solid waste products comprising of cyanides, pesticides, complex aromatic compounds and other toxic, flammable and reactive compounds shall still remain a challenge. Apart from this the proper disposal of sanitary waste and effective implementation of prohibitions to open disposal and random disposal of municipal waste shall also be a concern for the general public of Vapi (Chandrappa and Das, 2012).

In addition to the above mentioned future challenges towards establishment of an effective municipal solid waste management system it is also important to highlight that absence of proper resources as a result of insufficient fund, lack of effective man power or labour for regular collection and disposal of waste, ineffective technological support for effective recycling of the collected solid wastes has also become the key concern of the future waste collection process. Apart from this lack of operational efficiency of solid waste management due to ineffective participation of the municipal agency and the overall unscientific approach towards municipal solid waste management practices can also be included as the future constraints in this respect (Konno and Machado, 2011).

In consideration to understand the presently existing strategic framework of municipal solid waste management practices it is important to convey that in Indian social scenario this particular practice is highly unorganized particularly the disposal practices and collection techniques of municipal solid wastes. It is due to the huge population pressure all the urban locations of the country generate huge amount of municipal solid waste particularly in the residential areas; similar in the situation of Vapi city which is located in Gujarat. Being one of the industrially developed city population is also found to remain at the progressive rate which is the causal factor for huge amount of municipal solid waste. Looking into the present scenario the collection bins present at different locations in the city are found to be without any proper maintenance or not in use (Vij, 2012). Absence of separate collection bins for biodegradable and non-biodegradable wastes is also evident. Lack of durability of the storage bins and ineffective transportation of storage bins for mass disposal of waste is also observed. Furthermore it is also observed that rag pickers and dump pickers randomly collect wastes from the residential areas that result in unhygienic scattering of the solid municipal waste. Also there is existence of unauthorised dumping sites present in different locations of the city wherein the municipal solid wastes are found to be opening disposed. Irregular clearing of the collection bins is also evident in this city. Hence it can be concluded that the presently existing practices of municipal solid waste management is significantly ineffective with lacking municipality involvement that resulted in unscientific ways of waste disposal (Khajuria et al., 2010).

Presently existing strategic planning framework with respect to municipal solid waste management practices

Strategic vision with respect to an effective municipal solid waste management is to bring betterment and efficient in the presently existing waste management practices. However in addition to deliver operational efficacy creating mass awareness with to the hazardous health consequence of improper solid waste disposal practice and the importance of waste management as a benefit to public health outcome.

In consideration to the demographic profile and the extent of industrial growth of Vapi the major issue that can be identified is the pressure of solid wastes generated from households. Also the vast industrialization evident in this city can also be considered to be a contributor to huge volume of solid waste. The extent of awareness with respect to safe disposal and obeying the regulatory guidelines by the common population of the city can also be considered among one of the principle issues in context of discussion.

The key objective behind formulation of a strategic municipal solid waste management plan is to support mass awareness and sharing of information regarding the significance of municipal solid waste management along with improving the waste collection techniques with respect to multi-residential waste diversion. The other objectives are to reduce the use of plastic bags and implementation of separate waste collection units for biodegradable and non biodegradable municipal solid wastes. Another key objective behind the implementation of a strategic municipal solid waste management system is to acquire financial sustainability.

In India the practices of solid waste management is under the responsibility of the municipality members of the particular area wherein the State legislative guidelines are found to be applicable. It is in accordance to the legal guidelines of the State legislative framework that aid in collection, transportation and disposal of the municipal solid waste. However it is to be understood that under the Indian scenario majority of the state legislations do not cover the required technical and or organizational specification with respect to solid waste management in the residential areas. It was evident that the municipal acts do not define the responsibilities of the citizen towards proper practices of hygienic waste disposal and also has no specific guidelines for waste collection system. As a result of proper ineffective legal framework the municipal solid waste management system was also devoid of proper surveillance and hence remained severely outdated and deficient. There was also lack of proper implementation of legal guidelines with respect to municipal waste treatment system or sanitary landfills. Therefore in order to address the above mentioned aspects the formulation of Municipal Solid Waste (Management and Handling) Rules 2000 were evident that should be followed by the local municipality in order to establish the infrastructure and services for  collection, storage, segregation, transport, treatment and disposal of municipal solid waste. Moreover the urban development’s department of Gujarat is found to be responsible for enforcing the legal guidelines with respect to the above mentioned rules and it is the responsibility of the state pollution board to monitor the compliance with the standards on groundwater, air and leachate pollution (Sachdeva, 2005).

Strategic vision

However non compliance with the Municipal Solid Waste (Management and Handling) Rules 2000 was also observed. The primary reasons for non compliance were the absence of public awareness, civic sense, cooperation and resistance to change the attitude; absence of financial support for segregation of the recyclable solid waste and lack of efficiency of legal remedy can also be cited. Absence of proper door step waste collection practices with regular sweeping of the streets and shortage waste bins also contributed to non compliance with the implemented legal structure at the present situation. The other deficiencies namely absence of effective waste processing system and ineffective disposal of waste due to absence of institutional capacity also contributed to non compliance with the defined regulation of the State legislation with respect to municipal solid waste management system (Zhu, 2007).

The options available with respect to municipal solid waste collection system is the practice of door-to-door and house-to-house or community bin services wherein the waste collection practices should be regular and performed in an acoustic manner. In addition to this emphasis should be given to implement waste collection practices in the slum areas of the city and also in the commercial locations. The practice of segregation of the collected solid waste  can be considered to be highly essential as based on this step the recycling of the solid waste can be performed. However during the process of municipal solid waste collection emphasis is also essential for separate collection of biomedical and   sanitary wastes (Sachdeva, 2005). The collection of horticultural waste and construction or demolition waste should perform in a segregated manner with a separate disposal unit. Implementation of stringency with respect to prohibitions of openly burning of the collected municipal solid waste can also be include as one of the evaluation options in this respect along with application of restrictive measure towards stray animal at the waste storage sites. Furthermore with respect to options for secondary storage of municipal solid waste it is observed that proper availability of sufficient storage provisions complying with the amount of waste generate in significant wherein emphasis should be given not to keep the collected wastes exposed to the atmosphere. The presence of proper waste collections bins with easy handling transfer and transport of the collected waste can also be included as one of the options with respect to waste collection system wherein sufficient focus should be given towards safe and hygienic handling of the collected municipal solid wastes (Sasikumar and Krishna, 2009).  Therefore for the purpose of proper recycling of the collected municipal solid waste it is important to initially segregate the waste based on its bio degradability property. The non biodegradable wastes are generally taken for recycling while the biodegradable wastes are use in production of compost and organic manure.

Key issues in context of municipal solid waste management

The technique of sanitary landfill can be identifies as one of the procedures of waste disposal wherein the process of compaction should be conducted on a routine basis with the aid of a bulldozer. During this process application of 15 cm thickness earth covert on routine basis with a final cover of 60 cm thickness should be followed over the compacted wastes. This particular approach is found to be effective in lowering the migration of leachate through the soli layer and also reduce the foul smell generated from the compacted waste. The incorporation of impervious clay or synthetic liner is also found to be effective as it act as a protective layer restricting environmental pollution. The application of perforate polyvinyl chloride or PVC pipes is also an effective option for collection of leachate. Furthermore it is also preferable to install gas collection and flaring system in order to restrict the incidents of continuous methane gas liberation from the compacted waste to the atmosphere (Kumar, 2015).

The process of municipal solid waste treatment can be achieved through various ways wherein composting in order to decompose and stabilize the organic matter is one of them. As the practise of composting of wastes generate a significant amount of foul smell it is essential to practice safe disposal of solid waste for this purpose. There are two distinct ways of composting: the aerobic and the aerobic approach. The practice of vermin composting can also be cited as another option for treatment of municipal solid wastes whereby the organic wastes are converted into nutrient enriched soil. In additional to this the practice of bio-methanation can also be included as another option available for treatment of municipal solid wastes wherein through this particular process the organic wastes are converted to methane and manure. This particular process is found to comprise to tow stages: the acidification stage and the Methanation stage. It is during the stage of Methanation when methane gas is generated (Narayana, 2009).

The process of incineration and pyrolysis are also included as options for treatment of municipal solid waste. The practice of incineration can be defined as a thermal waste treatment process wherein the raw and or unprocessed solid wastes are burnt. Hence considering the Indian social scenario with respect to the conventional approaches of municipal solid waste management incineration is generally an option for treatment of the disposed biomedical wastes (Joshi, Ahmed and Ng, 2016). The last option in this respect is pyrolysis which is a thermo-chemical conversion procedure. It is by this process the solid fuel is heated in absence of an oxidizing agent or more specifically in an inert atmosphere and result in generation of gas mixture, a liquid and a solid residue the char. It is also important to highlight that the process of pyrolysis has been identified as an effective option with respect to solid wastes treatment for generation of energy (Gupta, Yadav and Kumar, 2015).

Objectives of strategic municipal solid waste management

The aspects of financial sustainability can be directly linked with the presence of an effective and strategic municipal solid waste management system. The primary options with respect of increasing financial sustainability in this respect are to improve the fee collection efficiency wherein the fees of solid waste collection can be linked with the water supply. Also increase in the value chain by sales of the organic wastes obtained from biodegradable municipal solid waste can also elevate the financial sustainability. In addition to this an emphasis to bring diversification with respect to the revenue generation streams and financing mechanism like polluter-pays, cross-subsidy is also found to contribute to this particular issue. The approach of practicing cost reduction in parallel of cost effectiveness can also be rightly included as one of the options that may aid in delivery of financial sustainability in terms of implementation of a strategic municipal solid waste management system (Lohri, Camenzind and Zurbrügg, 2014).

The presence of literacy within the general population of Indian can be considered as one of the crucial factor with respect to public awareness regarding the pros and cons of municipal solid waste collection system. Hence in order to establish an operationally effective municipal solid waste collection system it is very important for making the public informed regarding the adverse effects on health and society as a result of open and hygienic disposal of municipal waste. For this purpose it is essential for the members associated with the municipality of the cities city to organize mass awareness campaign with an effort to communicate the relevant information regarding safe and hygienic municipal solid waste disposal practices. It is also important to make the common public aware regarding the disposal techniques of hazardous waste (Mapunda, 2007). The approach of door-to-door awareness practices through the active participation of the local municipal members can also be considered as an effective way to inform the general public. Hence in consideration to Vapi which is one of the recognised industrially developed city of Gujarat the active participation of the members of local municipality may result in development of a sustainable municipal solid waste collection system (Sasikumar and Krishna, 2009). However the sincere involvement of the local population of Vapi along with the members of the municipality can results in the gradual establishment of a sustainable and effective municipal solid waste management system. 

Learning from the above mentioned information regarding the major options with respect to the different aspects of municipal solid waste collection process it is important to consider the   budget issue and or the sponsorships available for implementation o the strategic plan. Hence in order to finalize the plan of action it is essential to consider the funds available from the state government and also the extent of participation from the NGOs. Proper investment of the available funds is also important wherein the labour fees, waste collection container’s expense, the expenses required from vehicles in order to transport the collected wastes are a matter of concern (Rengarajan, 2013).  However it is also essential to consider all the above mentioned options and also to follow the legal guidelines during execution of the action plan.  

This particular segment shall emphasis on designing the plan of action with respect to municipal solid waste management that can be executed with immediate effect. The overall plan of action has been divided into six divisions wherein each division shall include specific tasks. It is also important to consider that the plan of action should comply with the stipulated time period allotted.

Hence the plan of action is as follows:

Initiative towards resource recovery and implementation of solid waste management regulatory issues: The primary activity in this respect is the official release of draft regulations for review by the local residents of Vapi, Gujarat within a time interval of 45 days has be to undertaken followed with  implementation of the regulatory guidelines. The final copy of the regulation has to be officially sanctioned by the local administrative authority.

The implementation of stewardship programs along with Industry agreements: The components namely newspaper, plastics, derelict vehicles, automobiles batteries containing lead-acid, automobile tyres, used oil, waste paint and ethylene glycol generated from automobiles should be enlisted as solid disposable wastes.

Introduction of provincial government aided solid waste reduction programs: In consideration to the action plan for strategic solid waste management this particular activity has a pivotal role as the approach of waste reduction is found to directly contribute towards effective waste management process. The environmentally responsible procurement policy for the local administrative body and the introduction of government initiated solid waste recycling programs should also be included (Christensen, 2011).

The practice of solid waste disposal: As a part of strategic solid waste disposal system initiative shall be undertaken to keep separate disposal bins in accordance to waste category. Separate disposal bins should be kept for the effective disposal of newspaper, beverage containers, scrap tyres, automobiles batteries and waste paint. In addition to this separate disposal bins should be placed in multiple locations of the town for disposal of organic and biodegradable products. However implementation of few prohibitions with respect to solid waste disposal has also been included within the plan of action. Prohibition to the practice of openly burning of solid waste, ban on disposal of compostable organic waste in a random manner and prohibition to the use of low density polythene plastic bags has also been considered under the plan of action. Ban the use of plastic bags that are less than 4 micron in thickness by the local public and shopkeepers for domestic use (Simcoe.ca, 2016).

Introduction of a modified garbage collection process: As a part of action plan that should be of immediate effect the introduction of distinct garbage collection shall be considered as an approach for effective management of the municipal solid waste. The garbage collection services like ‘pay as you throw’; bi weekly clearance of garbage sites used by public and provision to introduce a standard sized garbage container can be considered. Apart from this emphasis should be given to expand the green bin collection facilities along with expansion of yard waste collection practices and expansion of waste facilities diversion programs (Grover, 2000).

Acquiring regional or provincial cooperation for the implantation of the action plan: In context of the above mentioned plan of action it is essential to delineate the provincial boundaries and also to settle the regulatory guidelines of the landfill.  Finalization of the guidelines for management of construction and demolition waste and along finalizing of resource recovery plan also is included within the immediate plan of action. Further emphasis shall also be give to establish regional disposal facilities that are required to comply with the pre defined provincial standards (Burnley, 2014).

The introduction of reduction and recycling of the generated solid waste: Emphasis should be given to maintain stringency of the implemented disposal and diversion laws for the betterment of the concerned locality and the public. Apart from this focus shall also be given to continue political advocacy along with a practice towards reduction in generation of food wastes, textile diversion and introduction of reward program for obtaining a sustainable solid waste management system (Novascotia.ca, 2016).

Strategic objectives with respect to municipal solid waste management: The final objective behind formulation of a plan of action is to successfully achieve the pre defined strategic objective complying with municipal solid waste management. Therefore the primary objectives of this above mentioned action plan to be successfully meet the pre defined disposal standards along with an initiation of a comprehensive review of the formulated waste management strategy.   Creating a positive awareness within the local residents of Vapi, Gujarat regarding the importance of proper disposal of solid waste product can also be include within the strategic goals.

Conclusion:

Learning from the information provided in the previous sections of this assignment it is evident that the municipal solid waste collection system of India is not at a satisfactory level wherein the key issues are rapid urbanization and excessive pressure of population. The presence of low public awareness and their tendency to practice unhygienic disposal of household and sanitary wastes are the other major concerns. Therefore the assignment has also efficiently highlighted the existing municipal solid waste management practices of Vapi and has also identified the   present and future challenges in this respect. Apart from presenting an illustrative note on the available options for municipal solid waste collection, disposal, treatment and recycling process a plan of action has also been included.  Hence referring to the produced plan of action it is justified to infer that the present situation of municipal solid waste management system in Vapi can be improved if sufficient effort is given towards promotion of public awareness and incorporation of a sustainable waste management system within the society.

References:

Burnley, S. (2014). Solid wastes management. Chichester: Wiley.

Censusindia.gov.in. (2016). nt. Berlin: Springer.

Christensen, T. (2011). Solid waste technology & management. Chichester, West Sussex, U.K.: Wiley.

Grover, V. (2000). Solid waste management. Rotterdam: A.A. Balkema.

Gupta, N., Yadav, K. and Kumar, V. (2015). A review on current status of municipal solid waste management in India. Journal of Environmental Sciences, 37, pp.206-217.

Joshi, R., Ahmed, S. and Ng, C. (2016). Status and challenges of municipal solid waste management in India: A review. Cogent Environmental Science, 2(1), p.1139434.

Khajuria, A., Matsui, T., Machimura, T. and Morioka, T. (2010). Assessment of the challenge of sustainable recycling of municipal solid waste management in India. International Journal of Environmental Technology and Management, 13(2), p.171.

Konno, G. and Machado, C. (2011). Municipal solid waste. Hauppauge, N.Y.: Nova Science Publishers.

Kumar, S. (2015). Municipal Solid Waste Management in India: Present Practices and Future Challenge.

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