7 Ways Technology Is Innovating Waste Management

Smart Waste Management | 14 min Read
Futuristic Robotic Hand for a handshake

There exist certain technologies for solid waste management and treatment. As is well known, the most effective way to handle waste is by building an integrated system that consists of high tech, the waste management industry, and the public sector. Navigant Research states the market for smart municipal solid waste technology will reach $6.5 billion in 2023. The integration of related businesses can develop new motivations to boost the value generated as well as lead the growth of markets for recovered products.

Speaking of technology, it is crucial to penetrate the contribution of waste management innovations. Brand new solutions and improved methods reform the processes in the right direction.

Keep reading if you are curious about the recent innovations in the sector.


Generating actual power from waste is one of the major innovations in the waste management industry. This technique aims to convert waste into energy in place of the accumulation of waste in the landfills. Digesters produce the biogas from different sorts of waste such as food, agriculture, etc. and transform that into the energy utilized on-site.

Within the waste-to-energy innovation concept, it is super important to mention thermal energy conversion. Broadly speaking, this technology is based on the change in heat and pressure and works well to turn waste into chemicals, fertilizers, oils, etc. Aside from that, the microturbines, burning waste gas to create power and heat, already became a substitute for traditional methods for landfill processes.

Software for Waste Management Companies

Today, a great number of prominent firms reap the benefits of SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) offering advanced digitized platforms for the most efficient waste management process. These platforms refer to facilitating solutions to cope with industrial challenges and amplify the performance.

Though several solutions are provided by waste management software, the most crucial ones are as follows:

  • Central management & control
  • Operational efficiency & improved service quality
  • Immediate intervention capability through real-time alerts
  • Increased employee productivity
  • Increased customer and citizen satisfaction

Robot Recyclers

While talking about innovation, we cannot skip the robotic technology that has become the top trend in the last decades. After the import of recycling waste products was restricted by China in 2018, western companies expedited their innovative steps to integrate robotic technology in a better processing capability. Furthermore, researchers in numerous companies and universities highlight a more than $6 billion environmental service gap in the recycling industry and indicate robotic technology is a potential solution to fill this gap. All these institutions strive to develop more AI-enabled robotics that can assist in controlling quality, sorting recyclables, and minimizing the health risks to human work teams.

Currently, several companies produce robotic solutions for recycling efforts. As stated by the producer firms, the investments are mainly focused on improving the quality of shipped secondary commodities and reducing labor costs on the sorting line.

Internet of Things (IoT)

The leverage of the Internet of Things (IoT) and cloud computing technology provide high-tech sensors and enable waste management companies to optimize hauling routes and timing data. Throughout the process, haulers identify where full waste containers are located and when should they be collected. This technology lets customers collect waste from full containers. In fact, IoT aims to boost efficiency and save money by reducing unnecessary pickups.

The GPS monitoring system is a great innovation as well as sensors. As data is the key in today’s world, waste companies utilize the computer algorithms collecting information associated with the most efficient routes based on the distance and traffic patterns. All areas including residential routes, industrial waste pickup, construction containers, and smart bins can seize the opportunity of merging with such an innovative tool.

Waste-to-Raw Material

The search to reuse waste in a productive manner and innovations in that regard have been markedly increasing. Companies turn waste products into a source of raw material by extracting plastics and cellulose fiber. Autoclave sterilization technology is essential within this operation. Autoclaves are used as heat treatment processing units to destroy microorganisms before disposal.

Self-Driving Trucks

Despite the fact that it’s still in the development phase, autonomous waste pickup is close to being implemented. As known, Volvo has been working on this technology for 3 years. Uber became its partner and participated in the research and development process. This system targets a truck maneuvering itself whilst the operator gets out for collecting the garbage. Gear changing, steering, and speed are also optimized for low fuel consumption and emissions.

“Our self-driving refuse truck is leading the way in this field globally, and one of several exciting autonomous innovations we are working with right now” explains Lars Stenqvist, Chief Technology Officer, Volvo Group. Additionally, Stenqvist states this new technology provides benefits for a reduction in the risk of occupational injuries.

Robotic Trash Cans

Robotic wheeled trash containers that roll out on their own at the push of a button are an example of the greatest innovations. This innovation is especially helpful for those with limited mobility and motor skills.

Another invention in this category is motorized garbage bins with wheels which take themselves to the curb. They were programmed to travel from a docking station at a person’s residence to a second docking station at the curb. The innovators also add a function in this invention to be scheduled for the time and day of the neighborhood’s trash pickup.

Evreka leads innovative waste management solutions as well as follows the latest technological inventions in the industry. If you’re interested in how technology shapes the efficiency level of waste management processes, you can take a look at our smart solution family.


Download most recent e-books from our library now.

Download E-Books
Explore More Article