With the growing urbanisation, solid waste management has become one of the major challenges in developing countries like Nepal. Instead of recycling, reusing and more importantly reducing the waste in the first place; priority is given to the collection and disposal of solid waste in a landfill, which is the least favoured option in the solid waste management hierarchy. Furthermore, the deposition of solid waste in a landfill is a temporary and flawed solution, especially considering the amount of waste produced per day and the rate of increase of solid waste in Nepal’s big cities like Kathmandu, and Biratnagar. The deposition of solid waste in landfills causes a large-scale accumulation of waste, which directs to an increased number of landfill sites causing environmental pollution as well as the shortage of landfill sites. Therefore, leading to a need for the long term, and more efficient solution; The Incineration of solid waste.
The Incineration of solid waste
Incineration is a treatment process that destroys solid waste through controlled burning. During this process, solid waste is heated to over 1000 degrees Celsius in a furnace. Incineration has several benefits. The process has mainly three by-products: 1) Pavers bricks One tonne of incinerated waste will yield 20-30 kg of ash which can be converted into paved bricks. One tonne of waste will yield 60 kg of bricks 2) Fly ash with carbon Fly ash with O.1% to 0.2% carbon content and weighing 2 kg will be produced by a tonne of waste. The fly ash can be used in agriculture. 3) Activated carbon Approximately one kg of activated carbon will be produced in the plant. This can be used in sewage treatment, metal extraction, gold purification and medicine. The incineration process doesn’t use external fuel.
The passage of exhaust is through a pollution control unit which releases only water vapour into the atmosphere. It reduces the level of groundwater pollution in residential areas near dump yards. But the process has its negatives too. Many of the waste items incinerated, especially plastic, contain toxins which produce carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide when burned. Such pollutants can contribute to the development of asthma, cancer and endocrine disruption.
Hopefully, Nepal’s first waste energy plant is about to open. But, it has proven to be more complicated than just opening up the plants and burning the problem away. One reason is that the composition of waste varies widely throughout the world. Copying the model that worked in one country and pasting it in another doesn’t work.
Solid Waste Management – The Kathmandu Valley
To separate decaying and non-decaying waste at its source and compost the
decaying waste at household, community and municipal levels, To increase public participation in solid waste management
The increased volume of domestic waste, industrial waste,
chemical waste, health institution related waste or harmful waste in KMC has posed
challenges to the environment.
Management of the transfer centre
and landfill site in an environment-friendly
manner has also become a challenge due to poor
condition of the access road to the landfill,
inefficient transport system and the involvement of PSOs in waste management activities
without obtaining licence
The city government’s Environment Department Chief Sarita Rai says now onwards, the city government will send different vehicles on different days for the collection of degradable and undegradable waste.
Total Solid Waste from Kathmandu Valley – 600 Metric Tons, 75% Organic, 10% – Plastic, 2-4 Arba, 2-4 Years,
Incineration – Shriks the size by 90%
heated over 1000 degrees celsius in a furnace
Byproducts – Fly Ash – Agriculture
Many solid wastes such as plastic when incinerated produce harmful gases such as CO2 and NO2 and can have a negative impact on human health resulting in asthma
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