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'Trash Mountain' Rises Up In Mumbai As City Runs Out Of Space For Its Own Waste

03/26/2015 09:23 am ET | Updated Mar 30, 2015

We have a waste problem.

The world throws a lot of things away -- measured to be about 3.5 million tons of solid waste a day in 2013, a number expected to climb to 6 million tons a day by 2025. But that's nothing. The World Bank released a report a year and a half ago that projects the planet may peak at 11 million daily tons of trash around 2100.

Recycling programs try and alleviate some of that burden, but it's even been a challenge to convince people to put crumpled up paper in the blue bin rather than the black one.

High-income countries generally produce more waste per capita than low-income, according to The World Bank. But India and parts of China have disproportionately high rates of trash generation when compared to other low-income nations. Residents of Mumbai throw away a little more than a pound of material a day (compared to more than 4.3 pounds a day in America), and the Deonar dumping ground near the city is one of the largest receptacles for garbage in the world.

Between 2011 and 2012, Mumbai accounted for more than 6 percent of the entire country's trash. And every day, more than 500 trucks line up to pour their contributions on top of a trash mountain as Mumbai grows ever-closer towards running out of space for its filth.

Take a look.

  • Dhiraj Singh / Bloomberg / Getty Images
    Boys play as cows graze through garbage at the Deonar landfill site in Mumbai, India, on Wednesday, March 11, 2015. Mumbai is running out of space for its waste, and Deonar, Asia's oldest and largest dumpsite, is bursting. Each day, more than 500 trucks line up along a two-lane dirt road in an eastern suburb, waiting to add to a mountain of refuse tall enough to submerge the White House twice over.
  • Dhiraj Singh / Bloomberg / Getty Images
    A rag picker carries a bag of collected plastic bottles in the Govandi area of Mumbai, India, on Wednesday, March 11, 2015.
  • Dhiraj Singh / Bloomberg / Getty Images
    Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) workers clear roadside garbage near the Deonar landfill site in Mumbai, India, on Wednesday, March 11, 2015.
  • Dhiraj Singh / Bloomberg / Getty Images
    A gutter sits filled with garbage in the Govandi area of Mumbai, India, on Wednesday, March 11, 2015.
  • Dhiraj Singh / Bloomberg / Getty Images
    Pedestrians walk past a gutter filled with garbage in the Govandi area of Mumbai, India, on Wednesday, March 11, 2015.
  • Dhiraj Singh / Bloomberg / Getty Images
    Smoke billows from a fire burning electronic waste near the Deonar landfill site in Mumbai, India, on Wednesday, March 11, 2015.
  • Dhiraj Singh / Bloomberg / Getty Images
    A rag picker walks though garbage at the Deonar landfill site in Mumbai, India, on Wednesday, March 11, 2015.
  • Dhiraj Singh / Bloomberg / Getty Images
    Boys play a game of cricket at the Deonar landfill site in Mumbai, India, on Wednesday, March 11, 2015.
  • Dhiraj Singh / Bloomberg / Getty Images
    Garbage sits at the Deonar landfill site in Mumbai, India, on Wednesday, March 11, 2015.
  • Dhiraj Singh / Bloomberg / Getty Images
    Smoke billows from a factory chimney at a slum in the Govandi area of Mumbai, India, on Wednesday, March 11, 2015.
  • Dhiraj Singh / Bloomberg / Getty Images
    A rag picker carries a sack of sorted recyclable materials collected from garbage on his head at the Deonar landfill site in Mumbai, India, on Wednesday, March 11, 2015.

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