Vellore, with a population of five lakh, has been a trailblazer in decentralised management of solid waste and sending no waste to landfills. It has earned the remarkable distinction of getting its residents to separate wet waste from dry waste.
WtE plants in India burn mixed waste. The presence of chlorinated hydrocarbons like PVC results in the release of dioxins and furans when the waste is burnt at less than 850 degree C. Appropriate filtering mechanisms need to be installed to control such dangerous emissions.
A new rapid bioremediation process that can remove garbage hills and end their ill effects, promises a low-cost solution to waste management and disposal. It is very important that alternative technologies are carefully evaluated on their merit.