Abhay kumar's picture
Abhay kumar
June 30, 2014

What is the difference between degradable waste and Non-degradable waste please explain wth example.


Log in or register to post comments
0 users voted0 users voted

Hi Abhay, degradable wastes are those that can be consumed by microorganisms such as bacteria or other biological processes to return to compounds found in nature. The degradation process typically requires heat, light and oxygen. A thing that is capable of biodegrading (such as organic matter -- a dead animal, vegetables, meat, trees, leaves, etc.) can be used again by the Earth as soil that can be used to support or grow new life once it has biodegraded.

Non-biodegradable materials cannot be easily consumed by natural microorganisms and remain unchanged in nature for hundreds of years. While it may be possible for a type of plastic product to biodegrade over 100s of years, for all intents and purposes this product should not be considered biodegradable.

A common non-biodegradable material is polystyrene, which is found everywhere as discarded yogurt containers, bottles, razor blade handles, etc. For more information on polystyrene see this page: -- for more information on biodegradable materials see this page:


Find members with green building and green business skills and experience.

Want to be listed on this page? Join Poplar Network for only $99.99 per year!

Meet Pros.

AvatarAngela Fisher's picture
Director of Sustainability
Breckenridge, CO
AvatarJoy Scrogum's picture
Sustainability Manager
Champaign, IL
AvatarStephanie Belanger's picture
Interior Designer


Relevant education and training to consider.

Why join Poplar Network?

Poplar Network

  • Full Year Professional Listing
  • Save up to $1,000, or more, on Professional Liability insurance (E&O) designed for LEED consultants
  • Share Poplar Education courses with other Poplar Network members for FREE
  • Submit articles for authorship publication on Poplar Network (3 CEUs from GBCI per approved article)
  • FREE 10.5 Hour LEED continuing education package
  • Save on exam preparation and continuing education
  • Connect with other Poplar Network members

Join Today!

: 650-746-4261