How a community manages its wastes can make or mar the economic outlook of such a community. When waste is not managed properly, public health and productivity suffer, and potential jobs are lost.
Sustainable waste management can benefit the economic growth of a country in the following ways;
Wastes are Raw Materials;
In Nigeria, over 50% of household solid wastes are organic – which can easily be made into compost/organic fertilizer to boost food production. 30% of these household wastes are also easily recyclable, and suitable for use as raw materials in industries as paper production, plastic production, beverage can manufacturing, metal works, etc.
Currently, paper industries use over 50% of recycled paper when making new paper products. The average beverage can also contain 50% recycled aluminum.
Wastes Boost Local Industries
Lack of access to raw materials is a major challenge to local industries in Nigeria. By recycling, local industries can have access to raw material that either does not naturally occur in their country, are too expensive to exploit or process.
By recycling electronic products, precious metals such as platinum, mercury, gold, silver are won and these can boost interests in local automotive and electronics industries
Sustainable Waste managements create new business sectors
Compare to the conventional practices of burning wastes, sustainable waste management creates more business sectors. From recycling collection to processing activities, logistics, equipment, and technology, to upcycling and composting, 6 times more jobs are created.
It creates local/low skill job opportunities
sustainable waste management helps in the creation of jobs especially, at the local level where employment is very low. People recycle waste using traditional innovations such as crafting, knitting, etc. which the people are versatile with. using this to create a stronger local economy.
It reduces the cost of production.
By using recyclable materials there is a lesser demand for virgin raw materials and by the effect the cost of production reduces. This reduces the overall operating cost and increases the profit margin across the manufacturing industries.
it reduces local authority waste management budget.
According to World Bank’s ‘What a Waste 2.0’ report, municipalities in countries like Nigeria spend 20% of their budget on waste management. Yet, more than 50% of the households are not serviced and 90% of waste generated is burnt openly.
By recycling, municipals are able to reduce wastes by a minimum of 30% and this will also lead to a reduction in the percent of the budget that is spent on waste management, effectively freeing public funds for more developmental projects.
Complete the quiz to test your knowledge on how sustainable waste management impacts the economy and stand a chance to win one eco-friendly product from Ecobarter.