Human hair is a material considered useless in most societies and therefore is found in the municipal waste streams in almost all cities and towns of the world [1]. In rural areas or areas with low population density, the hair is thrown away in nature where it slowly decomposes over several years, eventually returning the constituent elements, namely, carbon, nitrogen, sulfur, and so forth, to their respective natural cycles. In urban areas or areas with high population density, it often accumulates in large amounts in the solid waste streams and chokes the drainage systems, posing a multifaceted problem. Due to slow degradation, it stays in the dumps/waste streams for long occupying large volumes of space. Over time, leachate from these dumps increases the nitrogen concentration in the water bodies, causing problems of eutrophication. Burning of human hair or the waste piles containing them—a practice observed in many parts of the world—produces foul odor and toxic gases such as ammonia, carbonyl sulphides, hydrogen sulphides, sulphur dioxide, phenols, nitriles, pyrroles, and pyridines . Open dumps of hair generate hair dust which causes discomfort to people near them and, if inhaled in large amounts, can result in several respiratory problems. Oils, sweat, and other organic matter sticking to the hair rot over time and become a source of foul odor and breeding ground for pathogens.

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