Landfills displace people from cities
In the process of increasing urbanization, population growth and rising consumer demand, companies produce more and more goods, which sometimes are completely useless or have a short time of use. In big cities one resident creates, on average, 300-380 kgs of waste per year. The average Ukrainian creates 200-250 kgs. Several years ago, the British newspaper “Financial Times” called the Ukrainian capital the dirtiest city in Europe. According to its estimates, one Kiev citizen creates many times more waste than he weighs, and Ukrainians as a whole create about 12 million tons of garbage per year.
Almost all European countries have rules for sorting, recycling and disposal of waste, which are strictly followed, but the Ukrainians are not worried a lot about sorting household waste. This issue has been successfully solved in Germany, Sweden and Switzerland: people in these countries by themselves sort about 80% of household waste; in other European countries this amount exceeds 50%.
Why is the issue of sorting waste so sensitive? This question has its answer.
Let’s consider the basic parameters by which we can determine that Ukraine doesn’t have an effective recycling waste system, and its industry uses natural resources not rationally:
Paper production. This process is water- and energy-consuming, as for the production must be used about 200 CBM of water, and 1000 kWh/h of electricity. Most European countries produce packaging and sanitary paper products from recycled paper, thus saving more 1.5 million hectares of forest. Therefore, the paper is much more efficient to recycle than to produce.
Use of waste oil (industrial, motor). Most Ukrainians pour it out into rivers or leave at landfills. To burn these oils, special systems are needed. Unfortunately, not all plants in the country are equipped with such systems. Furthermore, there are some companies that buy this oil for reuse. The use of waste oils is very dangerous: its combustion is accompanied with emission of huge amounts of harmful substances in the atmosphere.
Also there’s a difficult situation with recycling of batteries in Ukraine. You cannot recycle them together with other household waste, as heavy metals that are inside, can contaminate about 400 liters of water and 20 square meters of soil. But, on the other hand, what to do with this waste is unclear, as in Ukraine the collection points of discharged batteries and accumulators is still rare.
In Ukraine there doesn’t exist an established system for collecting and sorting of household waste. Nevertheless, each Ukrainian can help his city, putting at his home two waste containers for organic and non-organic (plastic, polyethylene) garbage. Also, if possible, you should buy fewer products made up from polyethylene. And the least, use some of the things again or give it to the poor, don’t create more waste around.
Compliance with these simple tips can make a great contribution to the preservation of the environment of our country.
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