Issue: Pressures created by human settlements on the environment - Waste
This is an issue under the Human settlements theme of the Data Reporting System.
Human settlements exert pressure on the environment by extracting resources from it and by generating wastes and emissions. As population grows and human settlements expand the demands for resources as well as the amount of wastes generated increase.
- HS-53 Total solid waste produced and disposed
Quantities of total waste is the broadest indicator for the pressure of waste from human settlements on the environment.
- HS-65 Amounts of hazardous waste
Quantities of hazardous waste is one indicator for the pressure of waste from human settlements on the environment.
- HS-66 Gaseous emissions from waste
Quantity of gaseous emissions from waste is one indicator for the pressure of waste from human settlements on the environment.
- LD-21 Area of land used for landfill
Area of land used for land fill as well as volume of waste sent to landfill is a pressure created by human settlements.
- LD-22 Rate of violations of residue levels in harvested products
Waste from agricultural activities including pollutants entering agricultural products and/or the food chain is one aspect of waste from human settlements.
- LD-36 Emissions to the land
Emissions of pollutants to the land are a pressure created by human settlements.
- LD-37 Emissions from activities that derive contributions from the land
Toxic substances generated by human activities in deriving product from the land are a pressure created by human settlements.
- IW-12 Catchment nitrogen and phosphorus load
Nitrogen sources in landscapes come from fertiliser use and application, animal wastes and sewage discharges. Sewage discharges are main source of this pressure originating from human settlements. Phosphorus is the key limiting element in freshwaters and is mostly tightly bound to particulate material. There are local problems with phosphorus enrichment in urban rivers arising from direct discharges, storm runoff, sewer overflows and septic tank infiltration. Quantities of nitrogen and phosphorus concentrating in surface water catchments are a direct measure of this limitation on human water supply and of the impact of human use on the land, inland waters, biodiversity and the coasts and oceans.
- IW-14 Volume of sewage discharge to surface waters by treatment category (primary, secondary, tertiary)
Sewage treatment plant discharges from cities and towns are a major source of pollutants and nutrients in aquatic environments, which, if in high enough concentrations, can cause ecological harm. Quantity of sewage discharge to inland waters is a direct measure of this pressure of human settlements on inland waters.
- IW-15 Volume of sewage discharged to land
Sewage treatment plant discharges from cities and towns are a major source of pollutants and nutrients in aquatic environments, which, if in high enough concentrations, can cause ecological harm. Discharge to land is often regarded as more environmentally beneficial because it reduces the impact on the waterways. Changes in quantity discharged to land, vis-a-vis quantities discharged to water may be indicative of an overall reduction in environmental pressure due to improvements in sewage management.
- CO-23 Aquaculture: volume of discharged sediments and nutrients
Waste from aquaculture facilities is one contributor of waste from human settlements.
- CO-27 Number, frequency, extent and volume of oil spills from all sources
Human settlements involve highly concentrated usage of materials and energy which inevitably result in spills of pollutants into coastal waters with lethal effects on marine life.
- CO-28 Quantity of discharges of different substances from humans activities to coastal and marine waters
Waste from coastal activities is one contributor of waste from human settlements.
- CO-51 Quantity of sewerage and ballast water dumped by shipping
Insofar as ships are mobile human settlements, waste from shipping is one contributor of waste from human settlements.
- Land - Direct pressure of human activities on the land- Pollution to and from the land
- Inland Waters - Habitat scale influences- Water Quality (for surface and groundwater)- Nutrients
- Inland Waters - Habitat scale influences- Water Quality (for surface and groundwater)- Other pollutants
- Biodiversity - Pressures on biodiversity- Pressures on marine biodiversity: pressures of coastal activities
- Coasts and Oceans - Direct pressure of human activities on coasts and oceans- Direct pressure of coastal activities (other than shipping and fishing)