With a population of over 1.2 billion, rapid urbanization and modernization of India is simply inevitable. Most of the cities are under-prepared for the rapid growth, because the infrastructure lacks serious development. Waste Management has become a matter of great concern to most city corporations, and there have been some instances of management collapse even in metropolitan cities in the year 2012. All this build-up took place within a single decade, which is why many corporations have awakened to the rude shock. There has been an unpredictable increase in both industrial and domestic wastes. The government and corporations have now taken cognizant of things that require immediate attention, and a lot of funds have been diverted to various waste management projects. Municipal waste is very different from the rural waste, which mostly comprises of agricultural and organic matter. Moreover, the total waste is rural areas is dispersed across a wider land area, which makes it more manageable. Since the urban population is obviously multiple folds more than the rural population, waste management becomes a very challenging task. Waste Management was conveniently done by dumping waste in rural areas, which then gave rise to a bigger menace of ‘pollution sinks’. Residential and commercial wastes are mostly in semisolid and solid forms. Even the bio-medical wastes, which have been treated fall into this category. Industrial waste on the other hand is not included in this category. Municipal solid waste management is quite a complex process, which clearly means a lot of investment in infrastructure, technology, and planning. It means efficiently handling:
* Institutional waste
* Dead animals waste at slaughter houses
* Demolition and construction wastes
* Wastes which gets accumulated on the roads
* Waste derived from horticultural processes
* Treated bio-medical waste
* Waste due to drains and outlets
* Sludge from industries
* Commercial waste from the market areas
All these processes have to be handled on a large scale, which is why the government of India has come up with many infrastructure improvement plans. JNNURM program (Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission) is designed to create equitable, responsive, efficient and productive cities. Urban Local Bodies and the state governments are actively working towards bringing about urban transformations. Most of the reforms are aimed at infusing highest sustainability to infrastructure developments. In fact € 253.59 million has been approved for 44 projects. Hence, solid Waste Management sector in India has become a very lucrative sector for investors. Millions of tons of wastage are sent to the landfills near most of the metropolitan cities like Mumbai, Ahmadabad, Bhopal, Chennai, etc. These undertakings are managed and run by both government and private enterprises. Let us now look at some of the solid waste management projects taking place in some Indian cities.
Mumbai, better known globally as the Financial Capital of India, has a huge population of over 13 million according to the census of the year 2011. The city spans beyond a 472 sq kilometers, and generates approximately 9,500 MT of solid waste everyday. 7,000 MT of freight is recyclable and bio-degradable, and the remaining 2,500 MT of waste comes from construction and demolition projects. The city has four major landfills Mulund, Deonar, Kanjur and Gorai. The landfill of Gorai was closed scientifically in the year 2007. Deonar is another big landfill on the eastern suburbs, and here the waste is simply dumped without any kind of treatment. Even this dumpsite it is scientifically closed by covering it with an impermeable layer. 65 hector area of this dump is used for generating landfill gas collection.
This city generates more than 2,400 MT of non-segregated waste every day. More than 1,000 vehicles make trips to and from two of their major dumpsites, Pirana and Gyaspur Sanitary Landfill. The budget of € 27.30 million has been allocated to the Gyaspur scientific landfill development.
Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh
The only landfill of this city, the Bhanpur Dumpsite is located at around 15 km away from the city limits. There are proposals of opening three more new landfills around the city. These landfills of 64 acres are expected to serve for a period of 20 years. The project cost is estimated to be around €5,550,000, which is roughly around 400,000,000 INR. These projects will involve waste processing, along with deriving compost manure. Bangalore, Karnataka
Bangalore, with a population of 8.5 million, produces nearly 3,000 MT of waste per day, which comprises of around 53% of vegetable and organic waste, while paper and plastic makes for about 20%. Presently, there is a scarcity of landfills and with an erratic garbage collection system (as a result of privatization), the people of Bangalore have begun to dump the waste at any street corner resulting in garbage strewn all across the city. As per the directive from High Court dry and the wet waste generated in Bangalore city have be transported to different landfills instead of dumping them together. Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) is to transport only dry waste to the Mandur landfill. The wet waste is to go to the temporary landfill at Survey No.31 of Chikknagamangala village, Sarjapur Hobli on the city’s outskirts. The State government has recently identified a new landfill which is spread across 94.35 acres. The Government is also looking for foreign players to help resolve this issue. A Sri Lankan group has come forward to invest € 38.46 million and they will implement Israeli waste management technology.
Key drivers for the growth of Waste Management sector
* Stricter norms are being proposed by the government for treating hazardous industrial wastes. * Supreme Court rulings and public interest litigations are actively planning for managing domestic wastes. * Now that size of landfill space is shrinking with the increasing population in rural areas, it has become imperative to use better management and new technologies for managing waste. * Many government schemes and grants are being handed over for infrastructure development in small and medium sized towns.
What it means for international companies
Invariably, India offers excellent opportunities for international or foreign companies specializing in various waste management processes. Even the companies selling products and technology will find India as a big and lucrative marketplace. With a growing urgency for efficient waste management in many cities across India, there will be more and more projects and employment opportunities in the sector. As seen in the above mentioned cases, foreign companies get the golden opportunity of partnering with Indian players to create integrated solutions in various waste management areas like feasibility study, design and planning, technical consultations, waste treatment technologies, restructuring of existing waste collection systems, etc.
Some of the areas where foreign companies can play an integral part are: * Engineering services
* Transportation and waste collection
* Technical consulting
* Performing feasibility studies
* Landfill treatment
* Composting technologies
* Dumpsite treatment
* Waste treatment plants
* Operation and maintenance services
* Biological waste treatment
* Mechanical waste treatment
* Sewage sludge treatment
* Treatment and recycling