The future of waste disposal in the UK and beyond

Waste refers to substances discarded after primary use that are of no worth and defective. Wastes are also substances no longer suited for their intended purpose.

In a world with over 8 billion people, waste is generated almost daily in uncountable million or perhaps billion tonnes. A situation that cuts across every aspect of the ecosystem thus leading to massive pollution and destruction of what was meant to be a little paradise.

Global statistics concerning the effects of waste on the environment are shocking! Every country is battling the adverse effects of waste pollution. The European continent, specifically the United Kingdom, has not been an exception.

It is estimated that in the United Kingdom, households contribute to a whopping 100 billion pieces of plastic packaging a year’s worth of waste, which is an average of 66 items in one household in a week. These are mainly food packaging items and carrier bags. In 2021, the United Kingdom generated 2.5 million metric tons of plastic packaging waste.

Like other countries, the UK is trying as much to manage waste by recycling. The UK ranks 17th on the global world index concerning the recycling of wastes and measures in place to tackle pollution.

Solutions to Waste Management

In this fight to ensure that waste is managed and prevented from being hazardous, a lot of research has been done by individual nations and global organizations to develop practical solutions that can be useful in the UK and other nations.

They include;

Employment of proper waste collection systems

There should be regular waste collection in the proper rubbish bins at specific waste collection centres. On the same breath, recovery facilities should be alongside existing dumps whereby they can do sorting of different types of waste. For example, in Lagos, Nigeria, people are employed to cycle around collecting materials that they can recycle from various households, and they, in turn, receive some pay.

Employment of technology as part of the management systems

Technology has diversified many aspects of life. A lot of inventories in this era could be employed to bring a positive impact to this move. For example, in Bangalore, a technological system termed `IGotGarbage` that uses mobile phone apps enables people who were previously waste pickers to be called directly to a house to collect waste. The world should look forward to specialized systems like a probable electronic waste system

Use of landfills

Landfills are still the most appropriate answer for non-recyclable wastes. This is in addition to a well-organized, low-cost waste collection service with a source separation for biodegradable waste, and the end would be a climate-friendly, low-economic future of waste management.

Use of circular economies

Products need to be designed for disassembly at the end of their life, and if the use of single-use plastics will go on, it should be out of biodegradable products.

The solution always begins with the recognition of the problem. The fact that the world has come to a common point of identifying waste disposal as a significant joint problem and that all are working towards seeking the solution not just now but for future generations is indeed the genesis of the achievement of real-time solutions to this world-threatening agenda.

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