As the world hurtles toward its urban future, the amount of municipal solid waste (MSW), one of the most important by-products of an urban lifestyle, is growing even faster than the rate of urbanization. Ten years ago there were 2.9 billion urban residents who generated about 0.64 kg of MSW per person per day (0.68 billion tonnes per year).
This report estimates that today these amounts have increased to about 3 billion residents generating 1.2 kg per person per day (1.3 billion tonnes per year). By 2025 this will likely increase to 4.3 billion urban residents generating about 1.42 kg/capita/day of municipal solid waste (2.2 billion tonnes per year).
This report provides consolidated data on MSW generation, collection, composition, and disposal by country and by region. Despite its importance, reliable global MSW information is not typically available. Data is often inconsistent, incomparable and incomplete; however as suggested in this report there is now enough MSW information to estimate global amounts and trends. The report also makes projections on MSW generation and composition for 2025 in order for decision makers to prepare plans and budgets for solid waste management in the coming years. Detailed annexes provide available MSW generation, collection, composition, and disposal data by city and by country.