Rugged mountains, difficult terrain, and slope pose major challenges for development of Gangtok city. However, despite these challenges, Gangtok has experienced an unprecedented population growth during last two decades. It has created tremendous pressure on the basic infrastructure services and environment, especially when it comes to waste management. On the other hand, tourism is the main economic base of the state. Gangtok City alone receives approximately five lakhs tourists annually (both foreign and domestic). It is also evident from the city-level data of solid waste that in a given year tourism sector alone generates more solid waste than the waste generated by city’s own population. It should be noted that Gangtok Municipal Corporation (GMC) is the sole responsible authority for MSWM since its inception in 2010. The primary objective of this research study is to examine the existing solid waste management system in the city in the context of increasing pressure from urbanization and tourism. The methodology of the study included reviewing of relevant literature and examining case studies of hill towns. At the city level, six wards out of fifteen wards of the city were selected based on its land use, population, terrain, road network, economic base, and existing waste management practices. Thereafter, primary survey was carried out after systematic selection of samples from hotels/restaurants, residential, shops, and ragpickers. Detailed study was conducted to understand the existing waste management practices and its challenges through stakeholder consultation. Major stakeholders such as GMC, Tourism Department, Urban Development and Housing Department, and local citizens were interviewed. Analysis of the primary and secondary data revealed surprising findings which include the issues and challenges faced by the local body due to difficult terrain, lack of manpower, lack of resources, inefficient collection process, and most importantly lack of willingness from citizens and tourists.
- Hill cities
- Solid waste management
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Tax calculation will be finalised at checkout
Purchases are for personal use onlyLearn about institutional subscriptions
Basir, S., & Goswami, S. (2015). Challenges of municipal solid waste management in hill towns—Case study of Pahalgam, Masters Dissertation, Faculty of Planning, CEPT University, Ahmedabad.
Bharti, O., et al. (2014). Effective municipal solid waste management practices: A case study of Shimla, Himachal Pradesh, India. In Waste Management and Resource Utilisation (pp. 173–182).
Bhat, R. A. (2012). Municipal solid waste generation and present scenario of waste management during yatra season in Pahalgam: a tourist health resort of Kashmir valley. International Journal of Current Research, 4(10), 004–009.
(CPHEEO), C. P., & Cooperation, G. I. (2014). Municipal Solid Waste Management Manual. New Delhi: Ministry of Urban Development Government of India.
Chettri, A., & Lama, S. (2014). Trends of urbanization and its impacts on environmental resources: A case study of Gangtok town of Sikkim Himalayas. Geo-Analyst. ISSN 2249.
Dewki, L. (2014). Solid waste management in the town of Darjeeling: Environmental concern. International Journal of Humanities and Social Science Invention, 3, 26–34.
Government of India. (2008). National Urban Sanitation Policy, Nirman Bhawan, New Delhi 110 011, India: Ministry of Urban Development Government of India.
Joshi, R., & Dhyani, P. P. (2009). Environmental sustainability and tourism—Implications of trend synergies of tourism in Sikkim Himalaya. Current Science, 97(1), 33–41.
Kumar, S., et al. (2009). Assessment of the status of municipal solid waste management in metro cities, state capitals, class I cities, and class II towns in India. Waste Management, 29, 883–895.
MOEF. (2014). Municipal solid wastes (management and handling) rules, 2014. New Delhi: Ministry of Environment and Forests.
Mufeed, S. (2008). Municipal solid waste management in Indian cities—A review. Waste Management, 28, 459–467.
Paul, S. (2013). Analysis of tourism attractiveness using probabilistic travel model: A study on Gangtok and its surroundings. European Journal of Geography, 4(2), 46–54.
Rai, S. C., & Rai, Y. K. (1994). Tourism in Sikkim Himalaya: A spatiotemporal analysis. ENVIS Bull, 2, 96–98.
Sikkim Human Development Report 2014. (2015). First published 2015 by Routledge 1 Jai Singh Road, New Delhi 110001, India.
Editors and Affiliations
© 2019 Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd.
About this paper
Cite this paper
Rai, B., Goswami, S. (2019). Urbanization and Tourism Induced Challenges in Waste Management in Hill Towns: Case of Gangtok. In: Ghosh, S. (eds) Waste Management and Resource Efficiency. Springer, Singapore. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-10-7290-1_34
Publisher Name: Springer, Singapore
Print ISBN: 978-981-10-7289-5
Online ISBN: 978-981-10-7290-1