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Waste Management Types: Industrial, Nuclear Waste and Recycling of Waste

Since the stone age, many inventions have made our life easy, healthy, comfortable and so on. No need to cook, even food is available at the doorstep in well-packed containers. But we have to a price for that. Do you know that Indian urban cities produce about 2.75 lakh tonnes per day of waste? At this rate, we have to live over waste only. So, it is high time to get an awareness of waste and waste management.

Table of Content


Waste is defined as any substance that has served its original purpose but is now worthless, defective, undesired or useless. A joint product with minimal economic value is referred to as a by-product. An invention that raises the value of a waste product above zero, can turn it into a by-product, joint product, or resource.

Type of waste

Waste is classified based on their ease of disposal source, composition and toxicity.

Waste that can be degraded by microorganisms is called biodegradable waste. All- natural materials and products come under this category. Examples are plant and animal products.

Biodegradable waste is generally considered Wet waste. Biodegradable waste has a small lifetime and is environmentally friendly being utilized by other living organisms.

Waste that needs physical or chemical treatment for disposal is non-biodegradable waste. All man-made products fall under the category. Non-Biodegradable waste is called Dry waste.

Generally, non-biodegradable waste has a long life and causes serious environmental pollution

Non-biodegradable waste is classified based on its source of formation.

Waste can be classified majorly 

Different types of Waste

Industrial Waste

Industrial wastes are waste materials generated by industries and manufacturing. They can be of biodegradable and non-biodegradable categories.

Biodegradable Industrial Waste

Biodegradable industrial wastes include waste from cotton mills, food processing plants, paper mills, and textile (cotton) companies.

Non-Biodegradable Industrial Waste

A list of the primary sources of non-biodegradable industrial waste, as well as the types of trash produced, is provided.


Generated Waste

Thermal Power Plants

Fly Ash

Integrated iron and steel plants

Blast furnace slag and steel-melting slag

Metallurgical industries

Mud and tailings

Fertilizer industries

Gypsum (CaSO4.2H2O)

Domestic Waste

Municipal solid waste like garbage/refuse, hazardous waste, and sewage, which contains body wastes like urine are examples of Waste. One of the most important components of municipal garbage is household waste.

Domestic wastes are also known as Household wastes. Food waste, paper, glass, metals, plastics, dishes, toys, metal, glass cans, textiles and electronics are examples of household trash. 

Plant and animal wastes, such as vegetables, fruit peels, bone, and meat waste, as well as poultry and fish waste, make up a substantial portion of household trash. Another significant amount of the garbage is made up of paper and cardboard, as well as waste newspapers, books, notebooks, and wrapping paper. 

Organic waste

Organic waste such as leaves, grass, and rubbish, is another major water contaminant. As a result of runoff, they pollute the water. Water pollution can also be caused by excessive phytoplankton blooming in the water. These wastes decompose quickly as they are biodegradable.

Agricultural Waste

Agricultural waste refers to waste produced as a result of various agricultural procedures. Manure and other wastes from farms, poultry houses, and slaughterhouses are included, as well as harvest waste, fertilizer run-off from fields, pesticides that enter the water, air, or soils, and salt and silt drained from fields. Punjab farmers are burning the stubble causing air pollution in Haryana and Delhi. The Stubble is also a part of agricultural waste.

Crop residues, weeds, leaf litter, sawdust, forest trash, and livestock manure are all examples of 
agricultural waste.

Nuclear waste

A sort of hazardous waste that contains radioactive substances is known as nuclear or radioactive waste. Many operations, such as nuclear medicine, nuclear research, nuclear power generation, rare-earth mining, and nuclear weapons reprocessing, produce radioactive waste. Government authorities regulate the storage and disposal of radioactive waste in order to protect human health and the environment.

Low-level waste (LLW) includes items like paper, rags, tools, and clothing, which contain small amounts of mostly short-lived radioactivity, intermediate-level waste (ILW), which contains higher amounts of radioactivity and requires some shielding, and high-level waste (HLW), which is highly radioactive and hot due to decay heat, and thus requires cooling and shielding.

Waste Management

Solid waste isn't the only type of junk you'll find in your garbage can. There are also medical, agricultural, industrial, and mining wastes in addition to home garbage. Poor trash disposal is one of the leading sources of environmental degradation. Punjab farmers are burning the stubble causing air pollution in Haryana and Delhi. A method has been developed for the disposal of stubble. As a result, waste management is quite important. You must be aware of the Indian government's 'Swachh Bharat Abhiyan' or 'Clean India Mission.'

Under the broad umbrella of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, two programs are being implemented. Swachh Bharat Mission–Urban (SBM–U) and Swachh Bharat Mission Gramin (SBM–G) are the two programs. 

The SBM–U principally intends to eliminate open defecation in urban India and achieve 100 per cent scientific solid waste management throughout the country.

The SBM-G seeks to raise the general standard of living in rural areas by promoting sanitation, hygiene, and a reduction in open defecation. By October 2, 2019, which is Mahatma Gandhi's birthday, it hopes to have achieved universal sanitation coverage. 

It is also important for each of us to do our part to keep waste production. The 3 Rs of Waste management ‘Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle’ are one approach to putting that plan into action.

  • Reduce approach expects each one to reduce the waste produced each day.
  • Reuse approach expects every product to be used multiple times and if possible for other purposes before considering it as a waste..
  • Turning something old and worthless (like plastic milk bottles) into something new and useful is what Recycling is all about (like picnic benches, playground equipment and recycling bins).

Waste Recycling

Recycling is the process of converting waste into other useful products. Our community and the environment may both benefit from recycling.

  • The octane rating of fuel made from plastic trash is high. It is known as "green fuel" since it contains no lead. 
  • Clothes will be created from recycled plastic trash, thanks to recent breakthroughs in the chemical and textile sectors. These will be offered in the worldwide textile market soon. 
  • In India, our cities and towns are subjected to long periods of power outages. There are also masses of decomposing waste strewn about. The good news is that we can solve both of these issues at the same time. Electricity may now be generated from rubbish thanks to technological advancements. 
  • A pilot plant has been established, where rubbish is combined with water after ferrous metals, plastic, glass, and paper have been removed. After that, it's decomposed using bacteria.

A few ways of effective waste management are given as follows:

Disposal of solid waste

  • The rubbish is segregated at the site into biodegradable and non-biodegradable wastes.
  • Biodegradable garbage (household waste) is transformed into compost.
  • Non-biodegradable garbage (polythene bags, metal fragments, plastic, and so on) is used in landfills and recycled into other useful products.

Practice Problems

Q1. Discuss the process of trash recycling for quality compost without foul odours and flies, in your garden.
Answer: To protect oneself from bad orders and flies, we must take proper care of the compost-producing pit.

It should be covered to keep unwanted odors at bay. Flies won't be able to get inside because of this.

The composting hole should not be emptied of recyclable waste. It should be recycled by sending it to the industry through vendors.

Q2. Distinguish between Dry and Wet Waste? Classify them as wet and dry waste?

  • Rotten vegetable
  • Used Tea Bags
  • Bones
  • Bottle and Containers of Pesticides

Dry Waste - All materials that aren't moist or filthy are classified as dry waste. This contains materials that are both recyclable and non-recyclable. Bottles, cans, textiles, plastic, wood, glass, metals, and paper are examples of dry trash.

Wet Waste - All organic materials such as food, soiled food wrappers, hygiene products, yard waste, tissues, and paper towels, as well as any other filthy item that would contaminate recyclables are classified as wet waste.

Dry Waste

Wet Waste

Bottle and Containers of Pesticides

Rotten vegetable

Used Tea Bags

Used Tea Bags



Q3. What are the major sources of waste?
Two major sources of waste that are ruining the balance of a healthy environment. The population is increasing day by day and their waste is increasing at 10X speed for their growth. Households and Industries which are essential for survival are the two major sources of waste. 

Q4. Can you find some ways to reduce the amount of waste you make?
Answer: Here are some simple techniques to cut down on your waste output:

  • Lunch should be packed in a lunchbox. Paper and plastic bags generate a lot of garbage, and it takes hundreds of years for plastic bags to disintegrate. Instead, use a reusable lunch bag or a sturdy lunchbox. 
  • To the grocery shop, bring reusable bags. The majority of retailers sell reusable canvas or sturdy plastic shopping bags. When you bring your bags, some grocery stores will even give you a discount at the check stand.
  • Use a reusable water container instead of buying bottled water.
  • Keep an eye on what you buy. Pay attention to the package when you're in the grocery. Is it possible to clean the container and reuse it for something else? When evaluating two similar products, look for the one with the least amount of packaging.

Frequently Asked Questions-FAQs

Question 1. Is it possible to decompose any kind of waste in an eco-friendly manner?
No, Biodegradable waste only can be decomposed but non-biodegradable waste such as plastic or glass can not be decomposed and they remain for a long period.

Question 2. How can we decompose biodegradable waste in an eco-friendly manner?
Answer: Composting is the process of decomposing the biodegradable waste eco-friendly and converting garbage into organic matter by burying it in compost pits. Bacteria and fungi are responsible for the composition of the wastes.

Question 3. What is an algal bloom?

Answer: n algal bloom, also known as an algae bloom, occurs when the population of algae in freshwater or marine water systems rapidly increases or accumulates. The coloring in the water caused by the algae's colors is a common indicator. It is a kind of organic waste.

Question 4. Are bones biodegradable in nature?

Answer: Because they are made up of organic substances like calcium, calcium phosphate, and others, they are biodegradable wastes. Because of their hard structure, bones degrade at a slower rate than tissue cells depending on the environment.

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