Rubbish is everything that people do not want any more. A lot of rubbish comes from people's homes. Examples are food scraps, paper, plastic, bottles, tins, old rags, clothing and bedding. Other things such as broken furniture, car bodies and parts are also rubbish when people do not want them any more.

Rubbish is also known as solid waste. This term helps distinguish it from the liquid waste (sewage) from toilets, showers, tubs and sinks.

If rubbish is not disposed of properly it will become a major environmental health problem because it can have a most unpleasant smell, can cause injury and it assists in the spread of disease.

People can cut themselves on broken bottles, tins, wood and metal left lying around. Also, rubbish has disease-causing germs which can be spread to people. For example, germs on rubbish can be spread by flies to people or food.
Fig.  4.1: Flies spread germs from rubbish to people and their food
Fig. 4.1: Flies spread germs from rubbish to people and their food.

Rubbish should not be dropped or left all over the ground. It is most important that rubbish is disposed of properly.

Proper disposal of rubbish means its safe storage for a short period of time, proper collection and final disposal at the rubbish tip.