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Classification of Waste

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Growth of population, increasing urbanization and rising standards of living have contributed to an increase both in the quantity and variety of wastes generated by various activities. Broadly, waste can be classified as urban waste, industrial waste, biomass waste and biomedical waste.

Classification of Waste


        Urban Waste

Industrial Waste

Other Waste

Biomass Waste

Biomedical Waste


Municipal Solid Waste

  • Paper, Glass, Metals
  • Synthetic polymers (cables, wires, toys and plastic goods etc)
  • Inerts (stones, sand and pebbles etc)
  • Hides and leather discards
  • Pharmaceuticals wastes (tablets, ointments, lotion etc),
  • Rags and  Sanitary wares
  • Kitchen wastes-(Fruit and vegetable peels, raw and processed food ingredients etc)



  • Bulk excretory matters (Feces and urine)
  • Body wastes (Sweat, oil, nails, dead tissue, saliva, tears and hairs etc)
  • Bath wastes
  • Laundry wastes (Detergent and soap precipitates)



  • Paper and pulp wastes
  • Bagasse

(sugarcane, bamboo etc )

  • Pressmud
  • Brine mud
  • Metallurgical slags
  • Gypsum
  • Fly ash
  • Oil sludge
  • Synthetic fibres (Scrapings of nylon, polyesters etc)



  • Waste oil and oil emulsions
  • Tarry waste/Heavy metals
  • Effluent dyes
  • Slurries and spent washes
  • Whey from dairy plants
  • Alcohol distillery wastes
  • Molasses
  • Miscellaneous dissolved organics (synthetics and biologicals)


  • Crop debris (stalks, straws, cobs, husks, oil cakes, shells, pods etc...)
  • Livestock wastes (cattle, pig, poultry and sheep waste etc…)


  • Abattoir wastes (flesh, bones, organs, blood etc...)
  • Bulk forest wastes (wood, stubbles and Humus)
  • Alternative forest wastes (Leaf litters, dead seeds and spores etc…)


  • Microbial biomass (algae and bacteria from cultured systems)




  • Human anatomical wastes


  • Animal waste from veteneraries


  • Laboratory reagents


  • Discarded medicines

   and cyto-toxic drugs


  • Body fluids (blood, urine, semen and saliva etc...)


  • Surgical wares


  • Incineration ash


  • Microbial cultures (Pathogens etc…)


Classification of Waste

Urban Waste

Municipal Solid Waste


Fecal Sludge

Industrial Waste


India Waste to Energy