“Pollution is nothing but the resources we are not harvesting. We allow them to be dispersed because we’ve been ignorant of their value.” – R Buckminster Fuller
Around 60 million tonnes of municipal solid waste (MSW) is generated in urban India annually. But sadly waste disposal and sewage treatment plants are missing in most Indian cities. Most waste that is generated therefore finds its way into land and water bodies causing severe water and air pollution.
With rapid urbanization and changing lifestyle and consumption patterns, the per capita waste generation will increase significantly in times to come. Without putting in place a suitable and sustainable mechanism to meet this ever growing MSW menace no city can hope to bring a qualitative change in the lives of its inhabitants, which is one of the principal objectives of the Smart Cities Mission launched by the central government. The idea of a “smart city” will work and a city can be “smarter” only if it finds a long-term solution for the waste it generates.
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Avijeet Lala is a partner at HSA Advocates. HSA is a full-service ﬁrm with ofﬁces in New Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata, and with a correspondent relationship in Bangalore.
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