Waste management

Detailed Overview of the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016

calendar26 Jul, 2022
timeReading Time: 5 Minutes
Solid Waste Management Rules

Solid waste management rules were introduced by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate change in place of Municipal Solid Waste (Management and Handling) Rules, 2000 to increase the scope of the rules beyond “Municipal area” and cover areas under the administration of Indian Railways, airports, airbases, ports, and harbours, defence establishments, special districts, census towns, notified industrial townships, and urban agglomerations, places of business, State and federal government agencies, and economic zones as well as historical and religious places.

Need for Solid waste management rules

The need for solid waste management rules was seen to control and monitor the waste generator. According to data it is estimated that only around 75-80% of municipal waste is collected among which only around 22-28% of waste is properly treated while the remaining is dumped or discarded in landfills or water bodies. Further, it is also estimated that by the year 2031 municipal solid waste generation will increase to 165 million tonnes which will increase to 436 million tonnes by 2050. According to the Report of the Task Force of the Erstwhile Planning Commission if the waste is properly utilised it has the potential to the generation 72 MW of electricity from biogas, 1.3 million cubic meters of biogas per day, or 439 MW of power from 32,890 TPD of combustible wastes, including Refused Derived Fuel (RDF), and 5.4 million metric tonnes of compost annually to help agriculture.

Solid Waste management rules 2016


Solid Waste Management rules apply to: –

  1. Every urban local body (Megacity to Panchayat level),
  2. Outgrowths in urban agglomerations,
  3. Census towns stipulated by the Registrar General and Census Commissioner of India, notified areas,
  4. Notified industrial townships,
  5. Areas under the control of Indian Railways,
  6. Airports/ airbases,
  7. Ports and harbours,
  8. Defense establishments,
  9. Special economic zones,
  10. State and Central government organisations,
  11. Places of pilgrims,
  12. Religious and historical importance may be notified by the respective State government from time to time and every domestic, institutional, commercial, and any other non-residential solid waste generator situated in the areas.


Duties of waste generators

  • Any person generating waste is required to segregate waste into biodegradable, non-biodegradable, and household hazardous waste at the source.
  • Any sanitary waste including diapers and sanitary pads is required to be secured into the pouches or wrapping material provided by manufacturers and disposed of in the bins labelled non-biodegradable.
  • The waste that is generated out of Construction and demolition is required to be treated and discarded separately in accordance with Waste Management Rules 2016 for building and demolition.
  • Further, the waste that is generated from gardens or horticulture is also required to be treated separately and disposed of as per the rules.
  • The Waste generators should stop the practise of burying, burning, or throwing the solid waste generated in public area, on streets, drains, or water bodies.
  • The waste generators are required to pay fees according to the rules for Solid waste management
  • In case of a gathering of more than 100 people, the person is required to take a permit at least three days before the event, and the waste management including segregation and handling in this event will be monitored by the organizer. No such event or gathering will be allowed without a proper permit from authorities
  • All the street vendors are required to keep storage containers to properly dispose of the waste generated such as wasted food, disposable cutleries, cans, cups, coconut shells, vegetables, wrappers, fruits, etc.

Duties of the Central Pollution Control Board

  • For proper execution of Solid Waste management rules as well as compliance with the standards set by the authorities there needs to be harmonisation between The Central Pollution Control Board and The State Pollution Control Board. Along with this, the analysation and inspection of the rules for groundwater, air, and noise pollution, in respect to solid waste processing and disposal facilities shall be done.
  • The Central Pollution Control Board is also responsible to review the proposal on the new technology that is used for processing, recycling, and treatment adopted by State Pollution Control Board/Pollution Control Committee.
  • Further, The Central Pollution Control Board is also required to prepare an annual report on the implementation of Solid Waste management rules and submit it to the Ministry of Environment, Forest, and climate change. This annual report is also needed to be published in the public domain.
  • For various facilities handling more than 5 tonnes of solid waste each day, publish recommendations for the management of buffer zones excluding any residential, industrial, or other building operation from the outer border of waste treatment and disposal facilities.
  • In order to help local authorities follow the legislation and assist States or Union Territories with the interstate movement of waste, instructions on the environmental elements of the treatment and disposal of solid waste must be periodically published.

Criteria for setting up treatment facility under Solid Waste management rules 2016

  1. The deapartment related to land allocation must give appropriate land that is required for construction of the solid waste management (processing and treatment) plants.
  2. The facility operator is required to obtain appropriate authorization and is responsible for the envirnmentally sustainable operations and procedure of solid waste in the facilities by SPCB/PCC (the State Pollution Control Board or Pollution Control Committee).
  3. An annual report is required to be submitted to the State Pollution Control Board and Local Authority by 30th April by the operator of the solid waste collection and treatment facility.

Process for acquiring authorisation under Solid Waste Management Rules

  1. In order to obtain authorisation under the rules, every village panchayat and local authority of census towns should file an application under Form 1 for setting up waste processing, treatment, or disposal facility. The documents that are required if the waste is exceeding five metric tonnes per day: –
    1. Project report on solid waste management
    1. Documents relating to land ownership for solid waste processing site
    1. Municipal Solid Waste Annual Report of the preceding year
    1. Authorisation or work order issued to the operator of the solid waste processing facility (in case the site is being operated by the private operator).
    1. Technical details of waste to energy plant or recycling plant
    1. Permit from District level site selection committee
  2. After the application is completed and documents are submitted the state pollution control board shall examine the proposal for authorisation.
  3. The State Pollution Control Board should issue authorisation within sixty days under Form 2 to village panchayat and local authorities operating waste processing, treatment, or disposal facility.
  4. In case of cancellation of authorisation because of failure of the facility to fulfil the conditions stipulated under the rules the local body or operator should be given proper notice.

The Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016[1] stipulate  

  1. That within two years solid waste processing facilities should be set up by all local bodies having 100000 or more population 
  2. establishing common or independent sanitary landfills by or for all local bodies with 0.5 million or more residents and establishing common or regional sanitary landfills by all local bodies and census towns under 0.5 million residents within three years.
  3. Five years for bioremediation or capping of old and abandoned landfill sites.

New Amendment

As per the new amendment notified by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change in 2020 the rules will now also cover the villages with a population of more than 3000. Further, the Ministry Of Urban Development is replaced with the Ministry Of Housing and Urban Affairs.


Under solid waste management rules the government under the Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate change has established a Central Monitoring Committee comprising various stakeholders from the central and state authorities. This central monitoring committee is required to meet once a year to analyse and examine the enactment of these rules.

Read our Article:Solid Waste Management Authorization: Form, Documents, and Norms

Muskaan Verma

Muskaan has completed her BA.LLB and LLM, gaining vast legal knowledge and expertise. She has keen interest in legal research and content writing, having prior experience of publishing numerous research papers in international journals on Environmental Laws and Corporate Laws.

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