According to an estimate, in the US alone, over 230 million tons of trash is generated every year. World Bank’s Social, Urban, Rural and Resilience Global Practice says that over 1.3 billion tons of waste is produced by the world ever year. This figure is set to soar to 4 billion tons by 2100. Technology has the power and capacity to solve this problem. According to an estimate by market research and consulting firm Navigant Research, global smart waste management technology market worth is expected to reach $234 million by the end of 2025. Internet of Things revolution presents several opportunities for us to solve the problem of waste management in the world. In this article we will mention some of the cases studies and companies where IoT is being used as a solution for waste and trash management.
Several smart waste management systems have been proposed around the world, including sensor-based dumpsters. The smart bins automatically generate alerts based on the level of capacity in them. These bins have smart sensors which are connected to GPS. Whenever a bin gets close to its full capacity, a notification is generated. This way, trash could be recovered and transferred to the recycling plants before it could ruin the surroundings. Such systems are being used in Hanover, Germany to cut costs and optimize solid waste management systems. The network technology used in IoT systems in this case is IPv6.
There are waste management startups that are using Internet of Things to speed up recycling of trash. One such notable company Minnesota-based Harmony Enterprises, which uses M2M technology in its SmartPack Trash Compactors to manage waste smartly. Its wireless, sensor-based technology is installed in trash bins. These bins generate notifications for the local trash collectors as soon as they reach their full limit.
Compology is a California-based startup that is known for its smart, connected waste bins. Compology’s trash bins have sensors in them, which relay real time data to Compology’s web-based software dashboards, based on which haulers can make decisions.
In June, TDC and Cisco partnered to deploy smart city projects in Denmark. One of these projects was IoT-based waste management. Famous waste management company SmartBin has installed its smart bins which are directly connected with the City Digital Platform. SmartBin uses ultrasonic level sensors to track the quantity of waste in bins. In Australia, the company managed to help the government cut huge costs because garbage collectors didn’t have to make unnecessary trips to check whether the bins are full or not.