Why should solid waste be treated?

wmThe Ministry of Urban Development, in its manual on solid waste management (year 2000) has estimated country wide waste generation of 100,000 MT per day. Where does this tremendous amount of waste go? In India the segregation of waste is almost negligible. Municipal Solid Waste is dumped in a mixed form in an unscientific manner on open waste land or low lying areas even near creeks, forests, rivers, ponds and other ecological sensitive regions. This practice is commonly known as ‘Open dumping’/haphazard dumping and does not meet the norms of disposal specified in the MSW Rules.
These dumping grounds not only affect the environment by air, water and soil pollution but also damage the property in the vicinity. The presence of moisture and rainwater leach the pollutant chemicals produced during degradation to dissolve and flow into the groundwater reserve/sea/river thereby affecting the flora and fauna of the water body. The dump sites virtually become a breeding ground for all kinds of diseases. Besides this, it leads to formation of secondary pollutants like Hydrogen sulfide, methanethiol and other Hydro sulfurous gaseous pollutants reacting with bacteria present in the waste in the presence of moisture and temperature. Methane, which is one of such toxic gases produced, leads to fire hazards.
Dumped hazardous and biomedical chemicals also leak into waterways and aquifers, which pollute water and soils. Even dumped yard debris harms the environment. In metropolitan cities where the land cost is on high rise, by filling such mixed garbage in the low lying area near the creek and bringing it to a ground level helps the builders to construct the buildings for both residential and commercial houses and ignoring the adverse impact of garbage reaction underneath.