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Types of Waste

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Environmental Studies
Wordcount: 1041 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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Waste is known as a matter which current users have no purpose of, or it is known as a matter which can be harmful to humans, animals or the environment. Waste can be divided into two categories, general and hazardous waste. General waste is waste that does not harm humans, animals or the environment. For example household waste, garden waste, building rubble, dry industrial and commercial waste. Hazardous waste is more likely to cause danger to humans, animals and the environment. This waste is based on the chemical reactivity, explosives, corrosive and radioactive.

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Waste Found In the Community of Edenvale

There is many different waste found in the community which affect the community. The types of waste found in my community are agricultural waste which comes from animal products and the production of crops. This waste can be recycled. Biodegradable waste is a type of waste that will go back into the soil and nature. This may include garden waste, animal waste, fruit and vegetable leftovers. This waste can be composted. Garden waste is known as grass clippings, weeds, tree branches and this can all be composted. Bulk waste is large waste, such as broken appliances, furniture and outer parts. Almost all of this waste can be reused or recycled. Trade waste is waste is generated by shops, offices, or commercial places. Construction waste is found on residential premises. This waste includes batteries, empty paint and pesticide containers. Some of the household waste is recyclable. Industrial waste is waste that comes from industrial and manufacturing processes. Some of this waste is hazardous. Intuitional waste is found in schools, hospitals, research institutions and public buildings. Medical waste is known as any solid or liquid waste which is generated in treatments.

The Waste plan in my Community

In my community the waste management plan for households is that waste is collected once a week. Businesses are different and get waste removed twice a week depending on how much waste is generated. Industrial waste is also collected once a week. It has been working effectively because the municipality has had no complaints and customers are happy with the system. The community also stays clean by means of the council collecting waste around bins so that the community will stay clean. Hazardous waste containers are also being provided and specialized companies deal with this waste. People that dump illegally get high fines. Public roads are being taken care of by litter being picked up by services five times a week. In the CBD litter gets picked up seven days a week. Free standing pole bins get emptied daily.

Informal Settlements around my Community

Some informal settlements where waste is not managed well is in the CBD, Hillbrow, New Town, Alexandra Township, and Jeppestown. The pollution comes in the form of dust from gravel roads, lack of clean running water, lack of regular refuse removal, broken and non-maintained sewerage pipes, absence of toilet facilities and ignorant littering. Due to the overcrowding of the informal settlements with migrants who are unemployed, and are not able to pay housing rent leads to a decay of flats and houses. In Alexandra some people still use the bucket system which increases the contamination from sewerage in the environment, and some people can get a wide range of illnesses. The organic waste attracts rodents and insects infestations. Poverty and lack of knowledge in these areas lead to littering, overflow of broken sewerage systems and unmanaged waste. A waste management plan for the informal settlements is that refuse is removed twice a week by means of bulk containers and street hawkers are issued with refuse bags weekly. “The metropolitan council wants a waste disposal strategy; identification of waste disposal sites, establishments, operation and control of waste disposal sites.” The community water supply and sanitation programs aims to ensure all South Africans have access to clean water. The metropolitan also wants to prevent invasion of industrial sites.

Some solutions that can help reduce waste are:

Waste Avoidance, Prevention and Minimization: system to ensure the appropriate design promotion, optimizing operating procedures and good house keeping for all waste generating processes. Forecasting potential situations in which accidents and spills can cause unscheduled waste emissions.

Recovering, Recycling and Reuse: Reduction in the waste stream. Recycle materials such as taxes on waste or subsides for waste cycling, and also extraction and utilization of landfill gas.

Treatment and handling: Ensuring that waste is appropriately treated and processed to their disposal in accordance with laws, regulations and guidelines.

Storage and Final Disposal: Timely identification investigation and construction of environmentally and socially acceptable waste disposal facilities.

New innovative ways of managing waste in disadvantaged communities are required. We can move towards collection by paying people to collect litter and involve the community in programs. We can improve the awareness to the public with regard to waste. Allow people living in informal settlements to regain their dignity by providing sustainable, affordable sanitation.

Polokwane Declaration

The aim of the Polokwane Declaration is to reduce waste by 50 % respectively by 2012 and have a plan for zero waste by 2022. In order to achieve their goals they must engage more closely in a realistic and practical manner.


In Gauteng waste management is lacking it appears there has been an increase in waste per year between 1998 and 2003. It also appears that Polokwane Declaration of zero waste remains optimistic. Hazardous waste has decreased as a result of improvement in industrial activities. Recycling initiatives are being adopted and are successful. The importance of the public awareness of waste and recycling should be made aware and action plans formulated.


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