Many cities spend between a third and half of their solid waste budgets on street cleansing. In many cases, their management system rarely draws the interest of technical personnel working in this areas. The cost of removing waste which has been scattered in the street is much higher than that of collecting the same waste from their source of origin.
Street waste generally arises from public behaviour, littering in the street. In many developing countries, however, this waste also arises from failure/inadequacy of waste collection services which leads generators to dispose of their waste in the streets.
Importance of Street Cleansing
The street cleansing is very important part of solid waste management, because absence of this service can block drainage system, can be a hazard to traffic and ultimately can pose a serious threat to public health and the environment. It can be done both manually and mechanically by using a wide variety of tools and equipment. Although mechanical equipment is widely use in industrialized countries, many developing countries still rely on manual labour working with small tools such as brooms, shovels and handcarts. Thus it is very important to pay proper attention to the productivity of labour of developing countries where a labour-intensive cleansing system exists. It is evident from the case study presented here that a huge saving can be achieved by replacing a small tool in street cleansing services in Mumbai. Therefore, solid waste management should have as objectives to minimise environment damage and to maximise the cost-effectiveness of street cleansing services:
- expansion of collection services
- minimisation of street waste by education campaign
- optimisation of system
- selection of appropriate tools and equipment