Here’s How Recycling Can Help To Reduce Poverty In India

Here’s How Recycling Can Help To Reduce Poverty In

Although India is a nation that’s constantly growing and improving, there are still many areas that are subject to poverty. There are many ways people can help the situation – but is recycling really one of them?

As it turns out, there are some places in India – such as Dharavi in Mumbai – where recycling is actually the answer to many peoples problems, helping to improve their personal situation. Here’s why!


Dharavi is home to the biggest plastic recycling industry in India.

Recycling in Mumbai is a multi million rupee business. Within it, Dharavi specialises in recycling plastic, and has become the biggest plastic recycling industry in India.

What makes it notable is the fact Dharavi is known as an impoverished area or slum, where over a million residents endure a desperate struggle.

However, recycling has proven to help reduce poverty in the area, due to the opportunities that come alongside it.

Over 3,000 sacks of plastic are removed from Dharavi each day. The people doing it are the residents, who have created their own self-employed roles and start up businesses within the recycling industry.

In addition to the area’s own waste, even multinational companies are sending their recycling to Dharavi! Large companies send plastic blue drums to establishments in the area, so they can be cleaned, repaired and reused.


The internet is also helping Dharavi’s recycling industry to evolve.

The Dharavi Market is a place where shoppers can buy products from ‘Skilled Craftsmen From Urban Squatters’, according to the tagline at

In addition to recycling in the local area, business owners can also sell through this site, in the form of products and gifts made from fully recycled materials from Dharavi.

This is just another example of how so much potential can come from an idea as simple as recycling. People who were previously unemployed and living in poverty are beginning to make significant progress as entrepreneurs.


As the recycling industry grows, there are more options for residents of these areas to progress, and more opportunities for people to get involved.

Many people living in similarly impoverished areas will be able to create businesses based on greener living – just like residents are already doing in Dharavi. Most of these businesses are small start-ups, working from home premises, and some have even become larger establishments. The majority of these are fully licensed businesses and pay their workers a daily wage, reducing poverty while also helping the planet. While these opportunities are still growing, they provide hope to Dharavi’s residents.


If more areas experiencing poverty were to take on these ideas, we could expect to see more and more people in improved situations, creating opportunities for their futures – as well as making the Earth greener in the process.

What do you think of the way recycling is helping to reduce poverty in areas like Dharavi? Do you think this should also be happening elsewhere? Let us know in the comments section below!