Mumbai’s mess: Trash output in city doubles in past 30 years
A family performs an aarti in front of Goddess Gauri and Ganpati at Vile Parle.
The amount of trash generated by an average Mumbaiite has doubled in the past three decades, which explains the pressure on the city’s limited waste disposal system.
Rising incomes and consumption patterns across the city have meant an individual today disposes an average 500g of waste every day as compared to the average 250g in the 1980s. Of the 24 municipal wards, those generating 700g of waste per capita per day has almost tripled — from 10% in 1981 to 29% in 2015. Similarly, 25% wards today throw 1kg waste per person per day as against 16% in 1981.
And with increasing income and disposal items on sale, environmentalists said the city’s trash problem will only grow. Reducing consumption and segregation of waste at source, be it in homes or commercial establishments, are important as the city is running out of dumping grounds.
A large proportion of this waste comes from the more affluent parts of south Mumbai, which makes up 29% of the city’s population, but generates 40% of the total solid waste that goes to the dumping yard. Suburban Mumbai, home to 71% of the population, accounts for 60% of the solid waste.