Basic Science

Causes and Effects of improper Waste Management

Alfred Ajibola - Tue, 12th February, 2019 @ 10:23: AM

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Academic Questions in Basic Science

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The ultimate source of energy is _____.

  1. plants
  2. sun
  3. food
  4. water
  5. air
  6. earth

The speed of wind is measured with a wind vane.

TRUE or FALSE

The nutrient majorly found in the liver is _____.

  • A. Carbohydrate
  • B. Starch
  • C. Protein
  • D. Fats
  • E. Oil
  • F. Lipids

A body at rest possess _____ energy.

  • A. Kinetic
  • B. Potential
  • C. Mechanical
  • D. Chemical

Waste Management:

One of the various ways to eradicate diseases in our world today is to put in place an efficient and effective waste management system. In a country like Nigeria, Millions of tons of waste are produced yearly out of which less than 20% is recycled. This is why we see a lot of waste on some of the streets, on roadside, in landfills, gutters and ditches, with some of these wastes blocking drainage, constituting nuisance while others will end up becoming homes to various disease causing organisms. Some of these waste are biodegradable (that is, they can be broken down by the actions of living organisms) while others are non-biodegradable. These wastes are generated from homes, factories, market places, hospitals, schools, industries and many other places. Apart from the fact that it’s an eyesore, it will adversely affect national growth and development.

Below are some of the causes of increasing amounts of waste in various societies:

 

1. Overpopulation

The larger the number of people in a society, the increase in the amount of waste produced. This will directly affect the turnout of waste materials from homes, market places and industries.

 

2. Corruption

When funds allocated to waste management are siphoned, the society and its inhabitants will suffer. This is one of the reasons while we often see landfill waste in some society. Corruption is a disease that will eat up any society, either directly or indirectly. Sometimes, the trucks that are supposed to move these wastes from the environment fail to show up because they are yet to be paid for the previous job they had done. This will result into the accumulation of wastes within these environments.

 

3. Lack of waste management Education / awareness

In the streets of some neighborhood, different kinds of waste materials are seen littered along the road and gutters. Educating and creating awareness to the residents of these areas will go a long way in reducing waste materials in the affected neighborhoods.

 

4. Advancement in Technology

When a nation advances in technology, there will be an increase in the production of non-biodegradable waste such as metal chips and plastics. These non-biodegradable wastes cannot be broken down and hence will always persist in landfills as solid waste.

 

5. Laziness

Some people discard their household waste just anywhere they like because they are too lazy to go to waste dump site, perhaps because of distance.

 

6. Avoidance of waste disposal fees

Some people would rather litter the environment with various kind of waste because they intend to avoid the waste disposal fee at waste disposal and management sites.

 

7. Lack of recycling industries

The presence of a few recycling industries in a society will result in the accumulation of excess waste. If these wastes were properly recycled, new products will become cheaper since the cost of production will be reduced from these recycled wastes..

 

Effects of Improper waste Management

 

  • Atmospheric pollution

The burning of waste materials including plastics, papers and rubber will contaminate the atmosphere. Biodegradable waste which had been decomposed by bacteria and fungi will cause the evolution of toxic gases into the atmosphere. Also, waste may contain toxic chemical like dioxin (produced from the rearing of broilers). The pollution of the atmosphere caused as a result of these waste will negatively affect humans, plants, wildlife and other living organism.

 

  • Death of Aquatic organism

The pollution of water bodies by solid and liquid waste may likely result in the suffocation and death of aquatic organism. For instance, oil spillage has been a major problem for the oil producing states in the south of Nigeria.

 

  • Climate Change and Green House Effect

The decomposition of certain biodegradable waste will result into the release of green house gases into the atmosphere. This will affect the weather condition over a long period of time because the temperature at the surface of the earth is constantly on the rise.

 

  • Contamination of the soil

Certain waste materials such as the containers of plastic water, inks, oil and petroleum products will have damaging effects on the soil. The growth of plants and other organisms living in and on the soil will be negatively impacted.

 

  • Reduced atmospheric oxygen and increased atmospheric carbon(IV)oxide

With regards to the carbon cycle, the only organism that takes away carbon(IV)oxide from the atmosphere are plants. Plants are also the organisms responsible for putting back oxygen into the atmosphere through the process of photosynthesis.

 

  • Increase in the amount of Carcinogens

Carcinogens are substances that can cause cancer. Radioactive wastes can be potentially damaging to humans when inhaled. They increase the formation of cancerous cells in the human system. Some may cause leukemia, a form of blood cancer.

 

  • Flooding and Blockage of Drainages

When excess waste materials find their way into gutters and pipes, blockage of such gutters and pipes will result. This will result to flooding in the affected areas. Stagnant waters will act as breeding sites for mosquitoes.

 

  • Diseases

Wastes materials found in the neighborhood serves as homes to pest and pathogens. These pathogens will in turn cause diseases in the long run. For instance, Lasa Fever is a disease caused by rodents dwelling in a dirty environment. Other diseases caused as a result of improper waste management includes cholera, malaria, fever, dysentery, diarrhea and tetanus.

 


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