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Industrial Waste and Its Types


Last updated date: 28th Mar 2023
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The rapid growth of population and urbanisation has been accompanied by an increase in industrialisation and waste generation. Waste is a substance or material which is unwanted and unusable. Some common sources of waste are houses, industries, factories, agricultural wastes, etc. Many wastes are dumped in an environment where it causes pollution in the environment. Waste could be solid, liquid, or gas. There are many types of sources based on which municipal waste is composed of household waste and commercial waste. Hazardous waste and biomedical wastes include industrial waste and clinical waste, respectively. Waste such as radioactive waste, explosive waste, and electronic waste (e-waste) fall into the category of Special hazardous. These wastes are polluting the environment and causing various diseases.

Industrial Waste and Its Types

Industrial wastes are generated by manufacturing, industrial processes, mills and mining processes. Industrial wastes are majorly responsible for the pollution of water bodies such as a river, lakes, coastal waters, etc. Dirt and gravel, metals, trash, oil, solvents, textile mills, metal industry, wastewater from pulp and paper mills, chemicals, waste from food processing industries, and other similar wastes are examples of industrial wastes. It also affects the aesthetic quality of water bodies. Industrial waste is also causing harm to water bodies and aquatic life. These industrial wastes are disposed of mainly from small industries as these industries are unable to invest in waste management intervention. Industrial waste is sometimes also referred to as solid industrial waste.

There are two types of industrial waste biodegradable and non-biodegradable:

Biodegradable Industrial Waste:

These wastes are decomposable and not harmful to the environment. Waste such as food by-products from the food processing industry, wool, animal bones from the slaughterhouse, dairy, wastewater from textile mills, house wastes, etc. are included in industrial wastes, which can be decomposed into less harmful material by the action of certain microbes are the biodegradable wastes. These wastes are less toxic in nature and can be treated easily; no special method is required for conversion. Some biodegradable waste decomposes itself depending on the material, and other wastes which need interventions for treatment are combustion, composting, gasification, bio-methanation, etc.

Non-Biodegradable Waste:

Non-biodegradable wastes include which is not decomposable on their own or from the microorganism. These types of waste are more harmful to the environment and human life. Industrial wastes such as plastic, metal, pesticides, chemical, glass, etc., are not decomposable. When the quantity of it increases in the environment, it is more prone to cause air, water and soil pollution and health hazards. Management and treatment of non-biodegradable industrial waste are very expensive.

Industrial Waste Pictures

Some pictures of industrial waste are given below:

Industrial waste

Industrial Waste

Industrial waste

Industrial Waste

Industrial Waste Examples

The aquaculture industry has increased boomingly in the last decades so has the waste generated from it. Aquaculture sludge and wastewater have increased. Wastewater from aquaculture includes suspended solids, nitrogen and phosphorus compounds.

Milk industry waste includes sludge and whey wastewater. This waste includes increased BOD and COD values. Agro-industrial waste includes waste used during the agriculture process, including chemicals, pesticides, or fertilisers and also some useful byproducts such as sugarcane bagasse, wheat and rice bran, corn cob, etc.

Tannery waste and the leather industry include waste such as cow dung, leaf litter, skin, hide byproducts, etc. Tannery industries also produce wastewater with high COD and BOD.

Industrial Wastes Pollution

Industrial waste has caused harmful effects and pollution in the environment. Industrial wastewater can cause pollution such as water, air and soil. Wastewater from the tannery, milk, and aquaculture industry has caused increased water pollution. By-product gases from the industrial process are harmful to the environment and cause air pollution. Which in turn is responsible for the emergence of various diseases related to the respiratory system.

Solid waste from industries is dumped on land, which causes pollution to the soil. Soil pollution decreases the fertile land. Specifically, non-biodegradable wastes are even more dangerous and harmful for both the environment and humans.

Industrial Garbage

Industrial waste is referred to as industrial garbage. This garbage is dumped on the ground, and it's increasing day by day. Proper management of this industrial garbage is very difficult and expensive. If the management is not done properly, it may cause severe effects and pollution. Industrial garbage is mainly responsible for land or soil pollution, thereby increasing the chance of an increase in harmful substances and gases in water.

Green dustbins are used for eco-friendly biodegradable waste collection. Whereas blue dustbins are used for non-biodegradable waste collection like metals and glass.

Key Features of Industrial Ways and Their Type

  • Increase in population globalisation; urbanisation has increased industrialisation to fulfil the need of the increasing population.

  • Increased industrialisation is associated with increased industrial waste. Industrial wastes are of two types biodegradable and non-biodegradable.

  • The main source of industrial waste is the paper and pulp industry, tannery, dairy industry, contruction, etc. These wastes are responsible for causing soil, water and air pollution.

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FAQs on Industrial Waste and Its Types

1. How is industrial waste disposal done?

Industrial waste disposal can be done in numerous ways based on their types. Solid waste can be collected by regular waste disposal and collection methods, though it should be ensured that solid waste is recycled wherever possible. Chemical wastes should be disposed of by following all legal guidelines by the municipality.

2. How to inspect air pollution by industrial plants?

To inspect the air pollution by industrial plants and chimney wastes, several measures have been adopted to remove particulate matter and gaseous pollutants from the scraps. The most common equipment used for removal is cyclone collectors, electrostatic precipitators, bag filters and scrubbers.

3. How do small-scale industries dispose of their solid waste?

The large and medium-scale industries still have some arrangements to dispose of their solid waste. But the small-scale industries have no such planning. Such industrial wastes, along with domestic wastes, are intermingled and disposed of here and there in local bodies.