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State of Waste Management in South East Asia

B. Industrial Solid Waste

Industrial solid waste - the non-toxic or non-hazardous waste generated by various industries is normally not identified as different from municipal solid waste coming from domestic and commercial activities. In many ASEAN countries, it has been included as part of municipal solid waste. As a result, there is an absence of a systematic database on industrial solid waste and the exact rates of industrial waste generation are not known. The lack of information on industrial solid waste is lamentable because it can actually include a wide range of materials that may have different levels of impact on the environment.

The types of industrial solid waste would include packaging materials, paper, housekeeping wastes, food wastes, scrap materials such as glass and ceramics, resins, plastics, metal and plastic scraps, stones, cloth, rubber, straw, wood waste, products which are off-specification and a variety of materials not officially specified as or are known to be hazardous/toxic.

Yangon City in Myanmar generates about 500 tons industrial solid waste a year, which comprises packing paper 10 percent, scrap materials 5 percent, wood wastes 5 percent, straw 30 percent, cloth 5 percent, glass 5 percent and others 40 percent from industries which include leather, cement, brick, glass, ceramic ware, asbestos cement, and marble factories, wood industry and chemical plants. Mandalay City, also in Myanmar, generates 4,792.09 tons of wastes from light industries (56.43 percent food, 38.37 percent mixed inorganic, 4.49 percent wood, 0.37 percent plastic/rubber, 0.20 percent cloth/leather, 0.07 percent paper and 0.07 percent others). Thus the variations from city to city, even within the same country can be very wide.

It is reported in the Draft Final Report of the Study on the Master Plan for Bangkok and its vicinity in the Kingdom of Thailand, 2001, that the generation of industrial solid waste in Bangkok and its vicinity was estimated at about 2.365 million tons in 2001, with projected increase to 2.485 and 2.602 million tons in 2005 and 2010 respectively. In Bangkok, since mid-1990s, industrial solid waste is collected and disposed of in an environmentally sound manner in licensed waste treatment facilities, which are controlled and regulated by the Department of Industrial Works.

In Malaysia non-scheduled wastes from industry are normally collected by either private or public contractors, who are licensed by the local authorities.

Singapore uses only licensed contractors. It is estimated that Singapore has an industrial waste intensity of approximately 0.2 kg per US Dollar industrial production compared with approximately 2.3 kg per US Dollar industrial production for People’s Republic of China and 1 kg per US Dollar for Japan (ESCAP, 1997. Refer to Figure 3). The generation ratio of municipal waste to industrial solid waste is 1:3 for PR China, 1:8 for Japan, and likely to be lower for Singapore. It is surmised that as the ASEAN countries develop, there is likely to be substantial increase in industrial solid waste generation. This would pose serious challenges to those ASEAN countries that do not have adequate collection, processing and disposal systems for this type of wastes.

Figure 3: Waste Intensity of Industrial Production in Singapore Compared to PR China and Japan of Industrial Solid Waste in Member Countries


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