Topic 5 Waste collection and transport

Organizing good waste collection and transport systems represents a critical moment in the overall waste management process, especially in the case of urban waste.

Today, collecting waste directly involves citizens who are called upon to collaborate in the waste collection process in a responsible way. Waste collection systems currently used can be divided into “street collection” systems and “door-to-door” systems.

In street collection systems, delivery of waste must be carried out inside containers of assigned volume, permanently located within urban areas. In street collection, there are lower costs for implementation and service management, but a poorer quality of differentiated fractions is generally observed (due to consumers’ mistakes in putting waste in the appropriate containers).


So, the spread of door-to-door collection systems has progressively increased over the last few years, in relation to the need to significantly increase the quantity of waste collected in a differentiated way (and then effectively sent for material recovery).

Now reflect and try to determine the main components (in terms of weight) of the waste you produce in your house during a month.

Regardless of which type of collection, street or door to door, a good system must be sized in order to intercept also the residual fraction from separate collection. Collection and transportation are the first steps. Then, different types of waste have to be correctly processed. In the next paragraph we are going to see what happens to the “organic fraction”.