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Exploring Solid Waste Management in Bihar: Drawing Insights from Global Success Stories for a Cleaner and Greener State

Bihar, one of India?s most densely populated states, faces substantial hurdles in effective management of solid waste originated from different sources. If looked around, prime reasons might include huge population expansion, inadequate infrastructure, swift urban transformation and primarily lack of education and awareness. This article tends to explore the present complex scenario of solid waste management in the lands of Bihar while highlighting challenges and future substantial solutions. Any solid material which is produced in the course of daily human actions which is discarded or undesirable is termed as solid waste. The key components of solid waste management are waste generation, storage, waste collection, transportation and waste disposal. Solid waste management is based on the principles of waste generation, storage, systematic collection, handling, transportation and safe disposal. The hierarchy of solid waste management involves Waste reduction, recycling practices and appropriate disposal methods to mitigate environmental risks, preserve resources and foster sustainability. In Bihar, concerted efforts are of utmost importance in each component. The ?Dolphin Man? of India, an environmental conservationist Dr. R K Sinha says ?Patna is one of the worst cities in terms solid waste management?. According to the National Green Tribunal, in 2023 Bihar generated 3,000 metric tons (MT) of solid waste per day and plastic waste accounts for 5-6% of the total waste. In addition to that, less than 50% of the total waste generated is properly collected and maintained. However, Bihar is witnessing a paradigm shift in the sustainable management of solid waste. From biogas plants to pyrolysis that converts waste into energy are being implemented in the state. The state can learn from Zero waste initiatives in San Francisco. Therefore, collective action is needed while advocating for policies and interventions that will prioritize sustainability.