Garbage burning is one of the most lethal causes of air pollution. Its smoke remains within our breathing zone for quite a long time.
Garbage is burnt in the countries where solid waste collection is so poor. Obviously this happens mostly in poor countries where no any sound system prevails for any type of solid waste management. Therefore, people of such countries have to suffer from another one of the main causes of air pollution. They poor souls don’t have any choice but to burn heaps of garbage to get rid of it.
According to environmentalists garbage burning is one of the key causes of air pollution. It directly affect the breathing zone of the communities living around it. Scenes of garbage burning are so common in poor regions. Poor communities survive in a suffocating environment because of huge amount of smoke coming out from it. They suffer from eye irritation, giddy feeling, breathing problems, throat allergy and even asthma.
Poor garbage collection system adds to the causes of air pollution
- Their civic agencies lack skills to do their job
- Staff of such agencies is inefficient and evasive to work
- There is no system of monitoring of their performance
- Overall government system of such countries is lethargic and corrupt
- Because of poverty they lack funds to do their job
- Communities also don’t cooperate to help civic agencies collect garbage properly
- Staff of these agencies is untrained to handle the solid waste
Cause of malaria
If garbage is not collected from the residential and industrial areas it litter around. It chokes the drainage system that is already faulty and without any maintenance in such countries. As a result the sewage flows on streets and causes mushrooming growth of mosquitoes. Consequently communities suffer from various diseases; the malaria is most common of them. So they don’t have any choice but add to the causes of air pollution. Obviously they burn it to get rid of it.
Slum dwellers have no choice
It is common practice in slums of the big cities of Asia to burn the garbage to remove it from their area and to stop its movement into the drainage system. But their act causes air pollution which stays for a quite long time in surrounding and they directly inhale it and suffer from various respiratory and other diseases of skin allergy and eye irritation.
Hurdles in garbage collection
At source: There are three points of problems in garbage collection system. One is the source where it is generated. Communities because of their unawareness don’t properly put the garbage of their houses at designated places to facilitate garbage collectors. They just throw it wherever they find place because there is no proper arrangement of places for throwing the garbage in backward areas of such countries. As a result whatever faulty garbage collection system works in their area that also miss to pick the garbage that is thrown here and there. Ultimately communities find it the only escape to burn it and create air pollution.
Transportation: The second point of problem is garbage transportation from source to destination. But civic agencies responsible for collection of garbage don’t carry it properly and while shifting it in vehicles they drop a lot of its quantity on roads that litter around the surrounding residential areas. It also eventually chokes the drainage system. But communities prefer to burn it before it harms the drains and increase the air pollution in their area.
At destination: The third point of problem is disposal of the garbage that must be done in scientifically made landfill sites. But in most of the cities of poor countries either landfill sites have less capacity or there is no any landfill site altogether. There also the workers of civic agencies burn the collected garbage and create loads of air pollution.
No doubt a few poor countries are improving their garbage collection system but they are doing for a few cities. While in towns and small cities this practice is going on without any control. Communities in such countries are quite unaware and they don’t know the harms of open burning of the garbage. They don’t understand it is one of the causes of air pollution.
For improvement of the garbage collection system in such countries it is recommended:
- Government must allocate sufficient budgets for the improvement of their garbage collection system
- Garbage collection laws must be made and strictly be implemented to properly dispose of the garbage
- Garbage burning must be banned either it is done by civic agencies or communities
- Scientific landfill sites must be constructed with the required capacity
- The civic agencies responsible for garbage collection must be overhauled to make them efficient
- Awareness must be imparted to communities to put the garbage at designated places
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