By Virika Juneja, Class 4, Shiv Nadar School, Gurgaon
Per the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MOEF), India generates 62 million tones of solid waste annually. Only 22-28 % of this waste is processed and treated. Solid waste generation is expected to reach 165 million tones by 2030. Waste accumulation also harbors germs and diseases.
To tackle this challenge the government issued Solid Waste Management (SWM) rules in 2016, which require residential communities to follow waste segregation process. My society implemented the SWM rules in the following manner.
Firstly, awareness was spread about the Waste Segregation Program, in our society. All residents and domestic helps were educated about the SWM rules, its environmental benefits and responsibilities regarding the program.
Posters & meetings on Recycling helped promote the campaign. Secondly, the garbage collection process mandated all residents to segregate their daily household waste into Blue (Non-Biodegradable such as plastic) & Green (Bio-Degradable items such as Food) bags. The garbage collection team was trained to spot any discrepancies in waste segregation. Lastly, all the Bio-Degradable garbage collected is sent to an in-house Composting Pit, built by a vendor. Waste collected is chopped, mixed with foliage and processed for Composting. Non Bio-Degradable waste is further sent for processing to a Recycling vendor. My society today is a proud "Zero Waste" community and complies with all SWM rules. In addition, we produce our own organic fertilizer, which we can sell outside. We are trend setters for other communities in Gurgaon and have helped minimize environmental waste.