Importance of Waste Reduction
In affluent countries, the main motivations for waste reduction are frequently related to the high cost and scarcity of suitable sites associated with the establishment of new landfills, and the environmental degradation caused by toxic materials in the deposited wastes. The same considerations apply to:
Large metropolitan areas in developing countries that generally are surrounded by other populous jurisdictions, and
Isolated small communities (such as island communities).
However, any areas that currently do not have significant difficulties associated with the final dispositions of their wastes disposal pressures can still derive significant benefits from encouraging waste reduction.
Their solid waste management departments, already overburdened, are ill-equipped to spend more funds and efforts on the greater quantities of wastes that will inevitably be produced, if not otherwise controlled, as consumption levels rise and urban wastes change.
In conclusion, waste minimisation involves all processes and techniques applied to preclude as much as possible or reduce to the barest minimum the occurrence of waste and wasteful situations in the production, distribution and use of any product and services.
Waste minimisation strategies are applied at different levels especially in the industries during product design and production and continue up to the consumer level.
At the consumer/household level, discrimination as to what to buy and in what quantity, product quality, re-use or recycling etc. are some of the major considerations to be taken to minimise waste.
Read Also : 8 Guiding Principles of Integrated Waste Management (IWM)
Household waste minimisation or reduction is influenced by level of knowledge, socio- economic status and lifestyle.
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