An amount of US$5 billion every year would be required to implement public-private partnership (PPP) model for municipal solid waste management (MSWM) in Indian cities, noted a recent ASSOCHAM-EY joint study.
The study titled, ‘The big “W” impact: effective urban waste management solutions in India,’ conducted by The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) jointly with global advisory services firm Ernst & Young (EY) suggested the need for comprehensive and forward-looking policy which can accelerate a paradigm shift towards a modern and a healthy urban living.
“We need appropriate policy prescriptions to ensure that waste management should be an important part of the economic cycle,” said the report adding that besides toilet construction and eliminating open defecation, it will be a value add if there is an increased focus on waste management under government’s flagship program Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.
“There is a need to develop an in-house financial and managerial capability to award contracts to private sector and monitor the services provided, since the responsibility to ensure proper service delivery and compliance of standards, remains with the local bodies,” the report recommended.
MSWM is a fit case for PPP mode for India as urban local bodies (ULBs) alone are not strong, financially as well as technically, to manage solid waste.
Noting that disposal of millions of tons of untreated garbage by the municipal bodies is a problem waiting for a prompt and feasible solution in order to avoid major health issues and environmental degradation, the study said that India’s waste predicament presents numerous social and environmental challenges for ULBs, whose responsibilities include MSWM.
In India, the ASSOCHAM-EY study highlighted that segregation and storage of MSW at source is a major setback and the decomposable and non-decomposable squanders are frequently disposed of at regular collective dustbin/dump. “The collection efficiencies are likewise observed to be poor, at around 70% in most Indian urban areas and keep on being overwhelmingly manual in nature.”
It recommended employing emerging technologies such as blockchain, which is a decentralized technology disrupting the energy, climate and environmental sectors across the globe, to be inducted in sanitation as well.
“Waste and recycling companies are utilizing this technology to reward people for recycling, solar energy generation, decentralizing energy and other related transactions,” said the report.
It further said considering that currently waste generated is disposed in a highly uneconomical manner i.e. in open dumps, water stream or underground burring, the need of the hour is to change the consumer attitude towards consumption, thereby minimizing waste generation.