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About

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About

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What We Do

SWMRT works on the issues surrounding SWM through a multi-dimensional, multi-layered and gender-neutral approach. Our work includes:

  • Conceptualising and leading behavioural change campaigns

  • Advising on strategy and policy advocacy

  • Facilitating through creating community-based models/tools and enabling and empowering stakeholders for implementation

  • Action research and data analytics

  • Conducting capacity building, training and other educational programs.

Campaigns

Campaigns

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We strongly believe that effective campaigns drive behavioural change, To this end SWMRT has created and supported various campaigns to raise awareness on segregation of waste at source and promoted composting, sustainable menstruation, sustainable living, festival and event waste management, among others. Some of our special thematic campaigns include communicating policy changes and research to build an appreciation and understanding of the issues around responsible SWM. All our campaigns are well-thought-out and involve long-term engagement to encourage adoption of lifestyle changes at all levels. The platforms used include digital media, traditional media and focused outreach activities.

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Policy

Policy

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  • Mandate segregation at source and door-to-door collection
    Mandatory segregation of waste at source (at the point of generation) and use of common colour-coded bins and guidelines across the country
  • Mandate destination-based waste stream collection and transportation
    Collection and transporation should ensure that each waste stream is collected and transported to its designated destination where either compost, recycle or managed disposal of each waste stream takes place.
  • Promote inclusion of the informal sector in recycling
    Ensure all organic waste (horticulture, market waste, kitchen waste, food waste) generated in each assembly constituency is processed within the constituency; Bulk generators (housing societies, apartments, corporates and institutions) to process their organic waste in house. Wet waste to be composted or made into biogas at ward level facilities, Secondary collection centres/ neighbourhood recycling centres to maximise dry waste recovery and recycling in each assembly constituency across the country
  • Promote inclusion of the informal sector in recycling
    All municipalities must ensure that waste pickers are included and encouraged in the ward-level recycling and recovery centres. Informal sector must be given preference for operations of these centres
  • Promotion of waste to compost/biogas and not waste-to-burn technologies
    Wet waste to be composted or made into biogas , dry waste to be sorted for recovery of recyclables. Only non recyclable material or post processing rejects to be disposed using waste to burn technologies.
  • Phase out non-recyclable products and packaging and move towards circular economy using the just transition principles
    Life Cycle Assessment of all packaging material should be made mandatory. Industry accountability , across segments, should be created through Extended Producers Responsibility. Non-recyclable products and packaging should be phased out

Since 2009, we have been working with various stakeholders building a roadmap of decentralised waste management to address the need for resource recovery policy and zero-waste-to-landfill policy for India.

Focus areas

We continue to advocate for sustainable SWM at all levels of policy-making, be it at the ward, city, state or national levels , focusing on implementing structural changes which reflect our ideology.

Influencing Policy

Ongoing legal advocacy, since 2010 through Lok Adalat and subsequently through the High Court of Karnataka has been an important game changer in influencing policy which among other interventions also resulted in influencing the national policy leading to the SWM Rules 2016. We continue to work with various departments and agencies at different levels including the BBMP, the Directorate of Municipal Administration (DMA) of Karnataka and the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) to usher in the much-needed change and work towards adopting sustainable practices from waste disposal to waste management.

Facilitation

Facilitation

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Creating models and tools for problem solving

This is at the core of the interventions that we do. The solid waste management problems are first identified, deconstructed and then reconstructed again, integrating the requirements of waste hierarchy, economic and business considerations, livelihood and occupational objectives. This is done on an ongoing iterative way, thus refining the models, as learnings improve and eco systems become more robust.

Facilitating for implementation

The early stages of faciliation is done to create pilots which demonstrate the proof of concept. Once proved successful, facilitation in the next stage is done with the intent to institutionalise the model which will ensure scaling up of adoption. Facilitation in both stages is done through multi-stakeholder engagement and collaborations.

Facilitation involves community-organising activities, institutional engagement and consulting, community-building through programmes, outreach activities, knowledge-partnering with implementation and funding partners, technical assistance, direct engagement, pushing for policy change and active promotion through campaigns to achieve the behaviour change.

Models of waste management

A model is an approach or methodology developed to achieve the goal through well defined practices in keeping with the underlying ideology. It seeks to address the process, economic and social requirements in a comprehensive manner which can be applied in any urban or rural context irrespective of scale of city town or community. Several models have been developed which attempt to address multiple aspects to achieve the final goal of sustainable solid waste management , to which SWMRT is committed to.

  • Mandate segregation at source and door-to-door collection
    Mandatory segregation of waste at source (at the point of generation) and use of common colour-coded bins and guidelines across the country
  • Mandate destination-based waste stream collection and transportation
    Collection and transporation should ensure that each waste stream is collected and transported to its designated destination where either compost, recycle or managed disposal of each waste stream takes place.
  • Promote inclusion of the informal sector in recycling
    Ensure all organic waste (horticulture, market waste, kitchen waste, food waste) generated in each assembly constituency is processed within the constituency; Bulk generators (housing societies, apartments, corporates and institutions) to process their organic waste in house. Wet waste to be composted or made into biogas at ward level facilities, Secondary collection centres/ neighbourhood recycling centres to maximise dry waste recovery and recycling in each assembly constituency across the country
  • Promote inclusion of the informal sector in recycling
    All municipalities must ensure that waste pickers are included and encouraged in the ward-level recycling and recovery centres. Informal sector must be given preference for operations of these centres
  • Promotion of waste to compost/biogas and not waste-to-burn technologies
    Wet waste to be composted or made into biogas , dry waste to be sorted for recovery of recyclables. Only non recyclable material or post processing rejects to be disposed using waste to burn technologies.
  • Phase out non-recyclable products and packaging and move towards circular economy using the just transition principles
    Life Cycle Assessment of all packaging material should be made mandatory. Industry accountability , across segments, should be created through Extended Producers Responsibility. Non-recyclable products and packaging should be phased out
Research

Research

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Our research and data analytics involves stakeholder mapping, reviewing government regulations and global trends, landscape research, material flow analysis and policy and budget analysis. Based on our on-the-ground experience with communities, our research focuses on case studies, ethnographic studies, quantitative and qualitative analyses. We conduct action research and exploratory studies for new themes, ideas, pilots and observational studies. We collaborate with partners for laboratory-based research wherever necessary. Our research documents are open source and are available in the public domain.

Education

Education

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Education includes training and capacity building. Participants include citizen volunteers, municipality officials, corporate staff, students and the general public. The education and training is carried out through Knowledge creation by developing toolkits, guides, handbooks Knowledge dissemination through sessions, demonstrations Tailored training programmes for corporates, schools, colleges and government offices Capacity-building of government and elected representatives Learning centre engagement Incubation centre for SWM Train-the-trainer series for citizens

Training of all stakeholders

Over the years, it has been amply evident that training key stakeholders is important for adoption and implementation of solid waste management principles. While the general public needs just awareness and information, municipal staff and administration need in-depth training. Training ensures that municipal officers are made conversant with the SWM Rules, regulatory requirements and the technical requirements.In addition, master training programs using a Training of Trainer (TOT) approach also enables creating a cadre of citizen practitioners to bring about change in their ward through constructive engagement.

Bringing experience and expertise to training

Our training covers theory, practice, field study from a very experienced group of practitioners that not just share the knowledge but motivate and inspire the participants to be the agents of change. Our training sessions include classroom learning, experiential learning and field observations.

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