The Waste and Poverty Saga

While there exists an overwhelming number of differences between developed and developing nations, the difference in standard of living between the two nations is what stands out. A difference in standard of living stems from a difference in per capita GDP, which in turn play into consumption trends in the two nations. Developed nations consume more of packaged good, which translates into a larger percentage of inorganic waste being generated.

Not only they produce a higher percentage of inorganic waste, they also generate a higher percentage of waste compared to developing nations. While developing nations have a waste generation rate of 1.3 Kg per person a day, a person in a developed nation generates waste at the rate of 3.1Kg per day. However, since developing nations such as India and China host one of the largest populations of the country, the absolute waste produced by these developing countries is the larger the waste produced by developed nations. Total waste generated by developing countries is 986 million tonnes per year whereas waste generated by developed nations is 566 million tonnes per year. Therefore, owing to the bane of an overwhelming population, individuals in developing nations consume less but cumulatively generate more waste than others.

On the other hand, owing to the boon of an overwhelming population, the supply of labour in developing countries is high. Due to a large supply of labour, developing countries are blessed with low-cost labourers which gives them a comparative advantage in labour intensive waste recycling methods over developed nation. Developed nations have access to a large amount of capital which in turn they invest in waste disposal trucks and smart IoTs. The capital required for these investments usually comes from taxes paid by the residents of the country. However, a developed country already has a low GDP per capita and also is home to a lot of slums that resides in the country.