Current waste management practices in cities in developing Asia are a threat to human health and to the environment. These impacts extend beyond the local level because of the emissions of greenhouse gases and the resulting contribution to global climate change.
Biological treatment methods for organic waste, which include composting, anaerobic digestion and mechanical-biological treatment, have a number of well-documented advantages over current and conventional waste management practices. These methods have been successfully implemented in a number of cities, but their uptake is still limited.
Governments play a key role in mainstreaming biological treatment and coordinated policy action at national and local levels is needed. This policy brief therefore recommends a number of concrete government actions that can facilitate the uptake of these methods.
National governments are recommended to focus on stakeholder engagement, formulation and implementation of supportive policies, and information management. Local governments are recommended to liaise more effectively with their national governments, develop clear strategies and plans, engage the local stakeholders, and nurture innovations and grassroots initiatives.