Waste Management Community Program By Earth5R: Using Circular Economy For Sustainable Communities

India’s financial capital, Mumbai, and the national capital, Delhi, are the country’s top two metro cities when it comes to solid waste generated per day.

Together, it is estimated, they generate nearly as much waste as the next eight metro cities on the list.

The inhabitants of Mumbai, specifically the millions of underprivileged people living in slums, face a pressing urgency to improve the lack of waste management services to mitigate the tragic consequences of excess waste. This includes increased amounts of air pollution, water contamination, environmental degradation, and other environmental issues. 

Environmentalists believe that the landfill sites where waste is dumped unscientifically are ticking time bombs and could create havoc with the health of people living in nearby areas.


In response to this increasing catastrophe, Earth5R volunteers conduct the Solid Waste Management and Circular Economy for Livelihood Training Programme in order to raise environmental consciousness in slums within the Mumbai region.

By incorporating interactive aspects within the training, Earth5R volunteers increased community engagement and boosted local ecosystems. Through introducing many tangible actions that can be taken at an individual level, the Livelihood Programme empowers the people living in unsanitary slums to adopt sustainable actions to create a healthier environment.

The community program is a solution based on the circular economy model to overcome the waste management crisis.

The Home Equals Planet Project, in specific, highlights the importance of waste management and many other sustainable actions such as composting, and proper waste segregation. For instance, Earth5R volunteers teach the local community the significance and process of segregating recyclable waste from regular waste to avoid dumping recyclable resources into the landfills.


Not only does the Livelihood Programme encourage more sustainable living habits, but it also empowers the community economically. Instead of mindlessly discarding waste, local women are taught by Earth5R volunteers the value of entrepreneurship through lessons that empower women to upcycle to create something economically profitable.

The women of the community play an essential role in running the waste management community program devised by Earth5R.

Moreover, as part of the waste management system, ragpickers also play a critical role in supporting the local ecosystem by collecting and recycling waste after segregation. 

The massive impact of the Earth5R program is felt by slum dwellers at multiple levels within the community.  Under the Programme, 4500 families have already been trained to pursue a more sustainable lifestyle.

The collective efforts of the Earth5R volunteers along with community members drives a movement towards sustainability and environmental restoration. Truly, this movement shows the importance of small actions in promoting the robustness of the planet.


Earth5R is an environmental organization from India with its head office in Mumbai. It works with the NGO sector, Companies and helps them conduct environmental Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programs across India.

Earth5R specializes in circular economy based projects. Earth5R also offers short term and long term environmental courses and fellowships.

-Reported by Claire Hsu, Edited by Riya Dani