I was asked the following question; “What is the most effective way of waste disposal?” in one of my major exams in Ecology class about a week ago.
Following the discussions we had, these were the choices that popped in my mind; recycling, waste segregation, re-using, incineration, the use of landfills. I chose recycling and wrote down the following very short essay to support my answer:
The most effective way of waste disposal is recycling – in the truest sense of it. It follows the fundmental law of physics that matter is neither created nor destroyed; it is simply transformed from one state – being solid, liquid, gas (and okay) plasma. Once we have mastered the techniques and technologies of recycling; such that a product or material once looses it usefulness – due to damage, wear, or being outdated or simply unwanted – can easily be broken down into its basic components and those components be used to make another product with the minimal of additional new materials and efforts. The need for incinerating, dumping in landfills, and re-using our waste materials would be greatly minimised if not eliminated altogether.
Integrated with composting of biodegradable wastes, better manufacturing techniques and technologies so that products are easier to recycle, recycling in its truest form would solve mankind’s waste management problems the way natural recycling solves mother nature’s problems with her organic or natural wastes.
PS. Remember in the film “Richie Rich” which starred Macaulay Culkin? In it, a de-atomizer machine Prof Kingbee invented that turned ordinary trash to well, bed pans and bowling balls? Wouldn’t that be amazing machine…
Then again, how many of us are really into recycling?