Arising challenges from single-use plastics and personal protective equipment through COVID-19 pandemic in waste management system of developing countries

Document Type : Review Article(s)


1 Environmental Science and Technology Research Center, Department of Environmental Health Engineering, School of Public Health, Shahid Sadoughi University of Medical Sciences, Yazd, Iran.

2 Department of Health in Disaster and Emergencies, School of Public Health, Shahid Sadoughi University of Medical Sciences, Yazd, Iran.

3 Environmental Faculty. Islamic Azad University- Maybod Branch. Yazd- Iran

4 Ardakan University of Applied Sciences, Ardakan, Iran

5 Environmental Health Engineering, Municipality of Shahroud, Shahroud, Iran



Background: COVID-19 pandemic has led to lifestyle changes. One of the consequences of these changes is seen in the management of municipal solid waste. Management of single use plastics and personal protective equipment as one of the common solid waste in this period is one of the important challenges of waste management.

Methods: This research was conducted by studying articles related to the COVID-19 pandemic and plastic waste and personal protective equipment. Articles were selected based on a specific search protocol and selection criteria.

Results: Because of inhabiting regulations for recycling, almost all produced waste was landfilled during early months of COVID-19 pandemic. During a short while, developed countries started coping with waste-originated issues thanks to their appropriate infrastructure. On the other hand, single use plastics and unsafe disposed personal protective equipment has made healthy and economic problems in developing and low-middle income countries.

Conclusion: There is an urgent need to make some corrections in waste management systems of developing countries and public education to minimize the adverse effects of COVID-19 on waste management.


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