9 Impacts of Sydney Rubbish on the Local Environment

As with many other highly urban and economically thriving cities, Sydney generates a lot of waste. To provide perspective, a reliable source gathered that the city has to deal with well over 3 million tonnes of waste yearly. By the way, this city’s increasing population always means the numbers keep increasing. There is therefore a dire need to take waste management more seriously.

Well, it is safe to say that quite a lot is being done. For example, several professional waste management companies ply their trade in the city. You can check out Ridly Rubbish Removal Sydney for more on this. However, a lot more than having numerous waste rubbish removal companies needs to be done.

For starters, understanding how much work we have on our hands is important. This is why this article primarily discusses the several impacts of Sydney rubbish on its local environment.

Consequences of Poor Waste Management in Sydney

Waste management should be handled appropriately in Sydney or anywhere else. This is because of the several adverse effects that could play out if the several tonnes of generated rubbish are poorly managed.


In the spirit of providing sufficient clarity, you should know that terrestrial, aquatic, and human lives are usually adversely affected when wastes are poorly managed. This is also why this part of this article intends to discuss these adverse effects one after the other.

Adverse Effects of Poor Waste Management on Terrestrial Environment

Pollution of Landfills

Landfills are usually at the core of how generated rubbish is managed. As a result, they need to be well managed. This starts by ensuring that only the right kind of rubbish makes it to landfills.

For your information, the right kind also implies rubbish in the right state. For example, some have to be well compressed before ending up in landfills. This is to ensure that these facilities serve the community for as long as possible.

Furthermore, some have to be rid of harmful chemicals and materials before making it to these facilities. By and large, the whole point is ensuring that these facilities are well managed as there are severe adverse effects when these facilities are not well managed. Some of them include the following:

  • Contamination of Local Ecosystems
  • Soil Pollution
  • Groundwater Pollution
  • Health Risks for Humans
  • Risks to Wildlife

Poor waste management practices should therefore be avoided in the spirit of avoiding all these and more. This is why getting things right from the onset is strongly advised.

For example, the services of professional and local rubbish removal companies should be engaged. This is the right move as these professionals are not only about disposing of collected rubbish but ensuring that what is collected is properly disposed of.

Habitat Destruction

Every creature is important in the grand scheme of things. That includes species and pathogens that are usually classified as unwanted. On the whole, every creature (macro & micro-organism) is important for ecological balance.

Having made this clear, some species and pathogens are only required in certain environments and settings. In other words, the transition of certain species and pathogens from their ideal space can be destructive.

Well, poor waste management practices are capable of making this happen as invasive pathogens and species can be introduced. Some of the possible adverse consequences include:

  • Food Chain Disruption
  • Compromised Ecological Services
  • Reduced or Disrupted Biodiversity
  • Climate Change
  • Vulnerability to Disasters
  • Soil Erosion
  • Cultural Loss
  • Jeopardized Livelihood

These are quite a lot of damages and are a sad reality because many communities have to deal with the aforementioned. However, there are even more that can be caused by the destruction of natural habitats. For more on this subject, you can visit:

Emission of Greenhouse Gas

Heat is not meant to be trapped in the atmosphere as there are dangerous effects when this happens. On that note, you should know that several gasses are capable of causing heat-trapping if/when they make their way into the atmosphere. Prime examples of such gasses include:

  • CO2 (Carbon Dioxide)
  • N2O (Nitrous Oxide)
  • PFCs, HFCs, SF6 (Fluorinated Gases)
  • CH4 (Methane)

Having made this clear, some of these atmospheric harmful gasses can be released if wastes are not properly managed. For example, the presence of organic rubbish (especially in the wrong state) in landfills can cause the release of methane into the atmosphere.

The same goes for lots of refrigerants in refrigeration, heat pumps, and air conditioning systems. A lot of these refrigerants are made up of fluorinated gasses, for instance. This is why this kind of e-waste has to be properly managed to avoid environmental damage and health risks.

Soil Degradation

Soil fertility can be seriously compromised as a result of poor waste management. Primarily, this happens through leaching, which leads to the harming of plants themselves and/or even essential microorganisms that make up healthy soil.

Adverse Effects of Poor Waste Management on Aquatic Environment

Marine Debris

The idea of dumping rubbish in waterways is not alien to some people. Well, the practice is wrong and harmful to aquatic life. This is especially because some disposed rubbish contains harmful chemicals, pathogens, and heavy metals.


Furthermore, this practice can lead to the injury or even death of some marine creatures. This could happen through the process of ingesting these debris or entanglement.

Degradation of Coral Reefs

Marine life and ecosystems at large rely a lot on coral reefs. Coral reefs are important for:

  • Nutrient Recycling
  • Carbon Sequestration – This is important for mitigating climate change
  • Wave Dissipation
  • Erosion Control
  • Fisheries – This contributes to food security
  • Photosynthesis for Marine Plants – This makes it essential for primary production in the food chain
  • Cultural Heritage
  • Recreation & Tourism

In light of this, coral reefs must be in the right state and shape. Unfortunately, some poor waste management practices threaten the optimal performance and even existence of coral reefs. Some of these practices include:

  • Plastic Pollution
  • Chemical Pollution
  • Dredging
  • Anchor Damage & Wrong Boat Groundings
  • Sedimentation – Through construction, agricultural activities, & deforestation
  • Elevated Atmospheric CO2 Levels – This causes ocean acidification, which in turn affects the optimal performance or even existence of coral reefs

By and large, improved waste management practices are central to safeguarding and improving the efficiency of coral reefs. This is why avoiding (especially) those things that can be categorized as water pollution is required.

Adverse Effects of Poor Waste Management on Human Health

Vector-Borne Diseases

Poor management of rubbish can create breeding grounds for pests such as mosquitoes and rats.


Some of these pests do not only create eyesores but are disease carriers. Prime examples of vector-borne diseases that can be caused as a result include:

  • Malaria
  • Dengue Fever
  • Chikungunya
  • Zika Virus
  • Dysentery
  • Cholera
  • Hantavirus
  • Leptospirosis
  • West Nile Virus
  • Yellow Fever

Besides proper waste management practices, appropriate vector control measures may have to be taken. This is especially true in places with a history of these diseases.

Food & Water Contamination

Poor waste management practices can lead to the contamination of drinking water sources and food crops. This can in turn cause health issues for people.

Air Pollution

Access to clean and uncontaminated air is as important as access to clean and drinkable water. The reason is because contaminated air can pose a wide range of health risks, especially respiratory troubles.


Speaking of how poor waste management adversely affects humans, there are a lot more concerns than discussed above. You can click here for more information on this.


Having gone over what lies at stake with poor waste management, there are tips for dealing with this crisis in Sydney and everywhere else. Some of them include:

  • Public Awareness & Education
  • Pertinent Infrastructural Development
  • Increased Commitment to Waste Reduction & Recycling
  • Regulation & Enforcement

All of these should be engaged in the true spirit of solving Sydney’s waste management concerns. Furthermore, they should be engaged proactively.