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Dec 3, 2011

Research Summary

Research Summary is also a page along with the Home page, Scope of Study and Introduction

Executive Summary, Sustainable Solid Waste Management in India.

Scope of Study
This study examined the present status of waste management in India, its effects on public health and the environment, and the prospects of introducing improved means of disposing municipal solid waste (MSW) in India. The systems and techniques discussed are Informal and Formal Recycling, Aerobic Composting and Mechanical Biological Treatment, Small Scale Biomethanation, Refuse Derived Fuel (RDF), Waste-to-Energy Combustion (WTE), and Landfill Mining (or Bioremediation).
This report is the result of over two years of research and includes data collected from the literature, communication with professionals in India, US and Europe; and extensive field investigations by the author in India and the US. Two field visits in India over a period of fifteen weeks covered 13 cities (Figure 1) representing all sizes and regions in India. The visits included travelling to informal recycling hubs, waste dealers shops, composting facilities, RDF facilities, WTE facilities, sanitary and unsanitary landfills, landfill mining sites, and numerous municipal offices. These visits provided the opportunity to closely observe the impact of waste management initiatives, or lack thereof, on the public in those cities. The author has also visited different WTE plants in the US to study the prospects of this technology in India.
Figure 1. Map of Cities Generating Different Quantities (2001 Values) of MSW; Cities Visited by the Author during Research Visits


CH4 Methane
Carbon Dioxide
Government of India
INR Indian Rupee
JnNURM Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission
LFG Landfill Gas
Mechanical Biological Treatment
MSW Municipal Solid Waste
NEERI National Environmental Engineering Research Institute
Refuse Derived Fuel
SLF Sanitary Landfill
SWM Solid Waste Management
USD United States Dollar
WPs Waste Pickers
WTE Waste-to-Energy
WTERT Waste-to-Energy Research and Technology Council