2017 is a year that Bengaluru saw a lot of press coverage related to the city’s waste woes. The year began with a story about how the former garden city has become known as the garbage city and ended with a startling infographic published in the Times of India showing how poorly we’re doing as cities.

In just one year we’ve grown from producing 3,500 tonnes of garbage every day to 3,700 tonnes per day. That’s a 1,750% growth in trash since 2000 we’re tossing into the landfills. Only Delhi beats out Bangalore in its increase in garbage production – their increase in trash is a whopping 2,075%!

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Do you notice more waste on your city streets? Or are you becoming immune to it? Is it alright as long as it’s not in your backyard? As long as it’s swept into the public street and off your private property? Do you think it’s your problem to help solve, or is it the government’s responsibility?

There are lots of initiatives filling newspapers about people taking responsibility for cleaning up their cities. But what if we didn’t have to clean up because we all did our part by consuming less, composting, and recycling our dry waste? Would our cities look different?

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At Daily Dump we’ve seen how some simple steps people take can make a dramatic difference. Just look at the example of Adarsh Rhythm apartments who have succeeded in segregating 90% of their waste at source!

Or the people teaching us how to reuse, or rent, or upcycle materials instead of buying something new.

Or the temple making beautiful compost from their puja waste instead of sending it to the landfill!

Or the people of HSR Layout in Bengaluru who have taken on the project of managing their waste by reducing what the consume and segregating at source – watch this video about their work and get inspired!

There are plenty of great models for us to see in our own communities about how to manage waste so we aren’t stuck with labels like ‘Garbage City’.

  • It means we all need to take the initiative beyond the borders of our apartment, house, temple, or office.
  • It means we need to reduce our consumption – especially items with unnecessary packaging.
  • It means we need to find alternatives to the more wasteful products we purchase, or think twice before we buy.
  • And, of course, it means we need to segregate our waste at source and compost our food waste in situ.

This is how we can build towards a zero waste 2018!

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