Topic outline

  • General information about the waste management workshop in the professional license program

    Professional License

    Waste Management

    1st-year workshop

    Professional training = learning in a work-environment

    Professional training 

    Is defined as a training program that allows an individual to acquire specific knowledge and the skills necessary to practice a profession. It is traditionally associated with learning a trade, based on practice and mastering techniques rather than theory and conceptual abstraction.


    The management of waste,

    Waste management encompasses the collecttradingbrokeragetransportationtreatmentreuse, or disposal of waste, typically those arising from human activities. 

    This management aims to reduce their impact on human health, the environment, and the quality of life. In recent decades, there has been a focus on reducing the impact of waste on nature and the environment, as well as on their valorization within the context of a circular economy.

    • Introduction to waste management

      Introduction :  

      Waste is a produced by human activity, closely tied to the presence of humans on Earth. 

      1. During prehistoric times  !

      During prehistoric times, waste was minimal, and nature took care of its decomposition. 

      2. In antiquity : 

      civilizations like the Romans implemented sewage systems for cities, such as Rome's Cloaca Maxima. They installe public toilets and designated pits outside the city where residents deposited their garbage and remains of sacrificial animals. Some had terracotta pots or stone containers that slaves would empty. Peasants could collect this waste to fertilize their fields. The Romans were, in essence, the world's first recyclers.


      3. In the Middle Ages (476 à 1453):

      Waste was thrown out of homes, into the streets, and into rivers. Environmental problems were less severe because the waste was biodegradable, but its negative impact on health was real. Unable to tolerate the smell any longer, in 1185, Philippe Auguste ordered the paving of main streets and created canals and central ditches to clean up certain neighborhoods. Free-roaming pigs were used to feed on the garbage, but it wasn't enough!

      Unable to tolerate the smell any longer, in 1185, Philippe Auguste ordered the paving of the main streets and created central canals and ditches to clean up certain neighborhoods. Free-roaming pigs were allowed to feed on the garbage, but this proved to be insufficient!


      4. In the 13th century:


      There were regulations put in place to address the lack of hygiene: paving the streets, cleaning in front of one's house once a week, and not leaving garbage and waste lying around.

      Regulations were not adhered to when it came to waste management. Waste continued to accumulate in an unorganized manner. The soil and rivers became polluted. This led to significant hygiene issues and resulted in severe epidemics, such as the Black Plague!

      5. During the Renaissance:

      The concept of waste reuse emerged. Poor people started collecting old clothing, rags, animal bones, hair, and various objects that could be reused. They were known as "chiffonniers." 

      These individuals were the early recyclers because, by boiling bones, they could obtain grease for making candles, and they could also create knife handles. Hair was used for making wigs, and fabrics were repurposed to make paper.


      6. During the Industrial Era :

      The increase in waste became significant and toxic due to the substantial volumes of non-biodegradable waste. 

      In 1884, Eugène Poubelle ordered the use of special containers with lids for depositing household waste in front of people's doors, preventing them from being scattered in the streets. 

      These containers were collected using wagons, initially horse-drawn carts, and then emptied into a large pit. This marked an important step in modern waste management practices.