Every household deals with rubbish on a daily basis with many using skip bins, local recycling centres and waste removal services to dispose of their waste. From simple household rubbish to the commercial waste of businesses, proper removal of rubbish matters. However, there are still those who choose to dispose of their rubbish themselves. This is where the problem arises, especially when toxic wastes are involved.

Here are some negative effects of the improper removal and disposal of waste.

1. Soil Contamination
Soil contamination is the No. 1 problem caused by improper waste removal and disposal. Some wastes that end up in landfills excrete hazardous chemicals that leak into the soil. For example plastic bottles; when they eventually break down they release DEHA, a carcinogen that affects our reproduction systems, causes liver dysfunction, and weight loss. Soil contamination does not only affect plant growth, it is also unhealthy to humans and animals feeding on those plants.

Plastics, metals, paper, and electronic wastes can be recycled at your local recycling centres. If everyone takes time to sort their recyclable wastes and bring them to recycling centres, the bulk of waste that will be removed from the landfills.

2. Air Contamination
Waste that contains hazardous chemicals, such as bleach and acids, needs to be disposed of properly, and only in approved containers with correct labels.

Some papers and plastics are burned in landfills, emitting gas and chemicals that hurt the ozone layer. Waste that releases dioxins are also dangerous and pose a health risk when they diffuse into the air that we breathe. Add to that the methane gases that decomposing wastes release.

Finally, landfill gas produced by the decomposing wastes, can be explosive and can harm nearby communities

3. Water Contamination
Hazardous wastes in the environment leech into the ground, and ultimately, into ground water. This water is used for many things, from watering the local fields to drinking. Toxic liquid chemicals from waste can also seep into water streams and bodies of water which can threaten marine life and destroy and suffocate marine habitats. Contaminated water is also dangerous and harmful to humans who consume fish and other marine life.

4. Bad Impact On Human Health
Improper disposal of waste can greatly affect the health of the population living nearby the polluted area or landfills. Waste disposal workers and other employees in these landfill facilities are at a greater risk. Exposure to improperly handled wastes can cause skin irritations, blood infections, respiratory problems, growth problems, and even reproductive issues.

5. Impact On Animals and Marine Life
It cannot be stressed enough: our carelessness with our waste and garbage does not just affect us. Animals likewise suffer the effects of pollution caused by improperly disposed wastes and rubbish. Styrofoam and cigarette butts have been known to cause deaths in marine animals who consume them. Animals who consume grasses near contaminated areas or landfills are also at risk of poisoning due to the toxins that seep into the soil.

6. Adversely Affects the Local Economy
Everyone wants to stay and live in a healthy, clean and fresh place. A city with poor waste management will certainly not attract tourists or investors. Landfill facilities that are mismanaged can cause the local economy to sink, which can then affect the livelihood of the locals.

7. Missed Recycling Opportunities
There is revenue in recycling. Cities that do not implement proper removal and recycling of wastes miss on this. They also miss out on the resources that can be reused and on the employment opportunities that a recycling centre brings.

8. Causes Extreme Climate Changes
Decomposing waste emits gases that rise to the atmosphere and trap heat. Greenhouse gases are one of the major culprits behind the extreme weather changes that the world is experiencing.

9. It Is Slowly Killing the Planet
We only have one planet, and our careless handling of waste is harming it. Taking care of the environment is everyone’s responsibility, for ourselves, for our planet, and for our children.