Looking through the law and policy for the past two decades on waste management, the researchers emphasize the importance of environmental consciousness as well as judicial insensitivity toward adoption of zero waste.
Surendra Kumar, Assistant Professor, Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University, Sonipat, Haryana, India.
Harsh Vardhan Bhati, Assistant Professor, Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University, Sonipat, Haryana, India; Ph.D. candidate in Environmental Law, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden.
The sharp rise in waste and consequently the waste management in India has received little attention in the policy circles. The waste management is subsumed under the umbrella of environmental protection framework in India of reducing, recycling, and reduction (3R), which has its own limitations.
To address the problem of rising waste which has nexus with the rise in population, urbanization, and globalization, beyond conventional measures have to be explored. We propose a framework to include the zero-waste concept which has gained traction in the past few decades globally.
Few cities in India and across the globe along with few countries are exemplar of the approach of zero waste by trying to move beyond 3R by designing a system in which the waste generation rather than waste addressal is the focus. The role of decentralized waste management has been highlighted which has been critical in the success of zero waste.
Zero waste is philosophical and conceptual framework which has not yet percolated fully in Indian judiciary as well as policy framework. This gap between law, policy, and practice on zero waste requires urgent attention by the stakeholders nationally and internationally.
The zero waste is an ideal aspiration which requires reconfiguration of our linear economy to circular economy and look at waste not as by product but rather negative externality which has to be consciously addressed. Looking through the law and policy for the past two decades on waste management, we emphasize the importance of environmental consciousness as well as judicial insensitivity toward adoption of zero waste.
Published in: Emerging Trends to Approaching Zero Waste: Environmental and Social Perspectives, Pages 79 – 101
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