Impediments to and Optimization Strategies for Solid Wastes Management In Onitsha Urban Anambra State.
This research is on Impediments to and Optimization Strategies for Solid Wastes Management In Onitsha Urban Anambra State. The study examined the relationship between impediments to and optimization strategies for solid waste management in Onitsha Urban Anambra State. Public awareness, recycling and reuse were adopted as strategies for optimizing solid waste management hence the dimensions for the study while waste generation and waste disposal were seen as impediments to solid waste management hence the measures for the study. In line with the conceptual and operational frameworks, three objectives, six research questions and six hypotheses were formulated to guide the study. Pertinent literature was reviewed and the study utilized the Unethical Theory (UT) which comprised of system theory, theory of reasoned action and theory of planned behaviour as the sociological baseline theory employed for the study. The study was conducted at the micro level unit of analysis adopting cross-sectional survey research design which is correlational in nature. A total of 189 copies of questionnaire were distributed, 167 were retrieved and 150 copies were found useable and used as the original sample size for the analyses. The researcher primarily collected data with the aid of a self-designed structured five point Likert Scale questionnaire. Face validity, content validity and construct validity were used to test the validity of the research instrument. Data generated were analyzed at different levels. For primary level data, descriptive analytical tools precisely frequency tables supported with chats were used to analyze demographic data while for secondary data analysis, descriptive statistics which comprised of means and standard deviation was employed to analyze univariate data and for tertiary level data, inferential statistical tool i.e. Pearson Product Moment Correlation Coefficient was used to test the stated hypotheses at 0.05 level of significance. These analyses were conducted using a computer software package called statistical package for social sciences. Results showed that in Onitsha Urban Anambra State, low public awareness, low solid waste recycling and low solid waste reuse were a major impediment to solid waste generation and solid waste disposal. Based on these findings, the researcher recommended among others that: administrators of solid waste management agencies should formulate and implement policies and programmes that will enhance public awareness regarding solid waste management, solid waste recycling and solid waste reuse. The researcher also recommends that the local government authority through the state government should fund waste management agencies adequately and the welfare of their staff should be improved; roads and inter streets road network should be improved; modern technologies should be provided and in-service training given to staff on how to apply same.
1.1 Background to the Study
This research is on Impediments to and Optimization Strategies for Solid Wastes Management In Onitsha Urban Anambra State. A major part of the world today has a throwaway culture, producing huge amounts of solid wastes. Advancements in environmental measurement techniques clearly indicate that demand on the earth’s resources is not sustainable and should be addressed immediately (York et al., 2004). What should be the correct balance between environmental, economic, technical, social and regulatory factors, when one solid waste system is designed and implemented? What must be the right fraction of the waste recycling, composting, reduction and recovery options in the scheme? How much community participation is essential for the success of a SWM scheme? What should be the major criteria for outsourcing bio-medical waste management (BMWM)? What are the major elements that may inhibit or encourage any kind of SWM plan? All these questions need to be answered before the commencement of any solid waste management operation. To make such a scheme efficacious it is important that it is environmentally sustainable, economically viable and socially acceptable (Nilsson-Djerf & McDougall, 2000; Khan & Faisal, 2008).
Abundant literature exists in solid waste management (SWM) research that discusses problem areas affecting the efficacy of the SWM schemes. However, there is limited research that has explicitly addressed the issues of environmental sustenance, economic viability and social acceptance together within the context of solid waste management. In fact, a study conducted by Morrissey and Browne (2004) concluded that no computer software waste management tools currently integrate all three aspects so and so cannot be considered fully sustainable.
Rogers (2001) classifies models into two broad categories: those that use optimizing methods and those that use compromising methods. Though Rogers categorized the models in the context of the engineering project appraisal, but it is valid for the waste management models as well. Optimizing models assume that the various goals of the plan can be expressed on a common scale of measurement. The loss in one objective or goal can be thus, evaluated against a gain in another. Cost-benefit analysis and present worth evaluation with the common scale of measurement usually expressed in monetary terms are integral part of the optimization models. On the other hand, compromising methods are based on the assumption that the decision- maker may have limited knowledge regarding the decision situation and are based on Simon’s Simon (1976) concept of ‘bounded rationality’. Guitouni and Martel (1998) also mention that the “idea of the optimal solution is abandoned for the notion of the ‘satisfaction of the decision- maker and that this is the beginning of the development of many multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA) methods.” The basic principle behind these methods is that any feasible solution is an optimal compromise among the various priorities. The discrepancies between the actual outcomes and aspiration levels are traded off against each other by means of preference weights. Each given alternative is analyzed in relation to multiple priorities, so that the best chosen alternative is the one that performs efficaciously well according to the priorities identified (Morrissey & Browne, 2004).
An exhaustive literature review identified numerous models developed for MSW management and planning. In recent years, many works have been presented with the aim of providing useful and comprehensive decision models, which should be both significantly close to reality and computationally tractable in order to help planners in managing solid waste disposal and treatment in urban areas, taking into account multi-disciplinary aspects involving economic, technical, normative, and environmental sustainability issues. Earlier, the studies have indicated that the emphasis were on model formulation, rather than on issues such as usability and data requirements. A technical survey conducted by Barlishen and Baetz (1996) indicated that the available mathematical modeling techniques were not widely utilized in practice, particularly in regional waste management agencies. Waste management engineers and planners required additional tools to assist in the development and evaluation of integrated SW management systems, particularly as the knowledge and technological options in this field continue to expand. There is both a need for, and an interest in, a useful, practical (with respect to data requirements and cost) and reasonably objective form of decision support system for use at the regional SW management decision-making levels. In the past several decades, considerable research efforts have been directed towards the development of economic-based optimization models for SW flow allocation. As Berger et al. (1999) and Tanskanen (2000) point out, the first solid waste management models were optimization models and dealt with specific aspects of the problem, for example vehicle routing, Truitt et al. (1969), or transfer station siting, Esmaili (1972). However, according to Berger et al. (1999), the early models suffered from several shortcomings such as having only one time period, recyclables rarely being taken into account, having only one processing option of each type, or having a single generating source. A more recent model presented by Chang and Chang (1998), is based on the minimization of an overall cost (taking into account energy and material recovery requirements), which takes place through the solution of a constrained non-linear optimization problem. However, this model does not take into account normative, environmental and technical aspects. Fiorucci et al. (2003) presented a decision model, based on the same approach as Chang and Chang (1998), but within a more general modeling framework, both as regards the system representation and the decision variables considered. However, an approach merely based on economic considerations cannot be considered as completely satisfactory in connection with waste management problems.
The system boundaries for the SWM models developed during the 1980s got extended with advancement in research and acknowledgement of the persisting problems in SWM. Thus, the new models comprehensively analyzed the relationships between each factor in the waste management system, rather than looking at each in isolation (MacDonald, 1996). Further, the increase and availability of the computers provided an opportunity to develop more sophisticated waste management models. The models developed in the 1980s were mainly aimed at minimizing the costs of mixed waste management (Gottinger, 1988) with intermittent inclusion of and recycling in some (Englehardt & Lund, 1990). As pointed out by Morrisey and Browne (2004) the main issues of concern for these early models were generally economic, some researchers did acknowledge the social equity issues related to the siting of facilities (Fuertes, 1974). Similarly, Kirca and Erkip (1988) developed a linear programming model for determining transfer station locations in the SW management system of Istanbul, Turkey. Other researchers, such as Jacobs et al. (1984); Motameni and Falcone (1990) included social issues. They looked at ways to influence people’s attitudes, so that they might change their behavior when it comes to recycling. However, the inclusion of social issues such as these was unusual.
According to Leao et al. (2004) conventional waste models, in the late 1980s and 1990s, started to include waste recovery facilities, and assumptions of waste reduction. The optimizing function was generally still based on economic analysis, with the difference that revenues from waste recovery, and/or environmental costs of pollution were included. Jacobs and Everett (1992) and Lund (1990), for example, developed models that schedule landfills and waste recovery activities by minimizing the present value cost over the landfills lifetime. According to the state-of-art review on solid waste management conducted by Morrisey and Browne (2004), models developed by MacDonald (1996b), Chang (1996) was the first to explicitly incorporate environmental costs. With similar approach, the model developed by Daskalopoulos et al. (1998) identifies the optimal combination of technologies for the handling, treatment and disposal of solid wastes according to economic and environmental criteria.
1990s saw the advent of more comprehensive waste management models. Chang and Wei (1999), MacDonald (1996b), Morris (1991) and Smith and Baetz (1991) developed models that included recycling and other waste management methods for the planning of municipal solid waste management. Or and Curi (1993) applied a mixed integer linear programming model to improve solid waste collection and transportation system in the city of Izmir,
Turkey, with the aim of minimizing the city’s total solid waste collection and transportation costs. A cost-effective and workload-balancing operation in the regional solid waste management system of the Taipei City was developed by Chang et al. (1997) by using linear and integer programming methods. Integrated solid waste management (ISWM) gradually became the norm of the waste management models (Berger et al., 1999; Clift et al., 2000; EPIC and CSR, 2000; ERRA, 1999; Gabola, 1999; Kowalewski et al., 1999). ISWM takes into account of all the aspects such as, full range of waste streams to be managed, to develop a SWM plan. It selects the best available waste management practices, based on site specific environmental and economic considerations, to solve any SWM problems. Thus, a trend to include the whole life cycle of products in models has emerged (Barton et al., 1996; Bjorklund et al., 1999; EPIC and CSR, 2000; Finnveden, 1999; Harrison et al., 2001; McDougall et al., 2001; Powell, 2000; Warmer Bulletin, 2000), so as to assess the environmental impact thoroughly from various significant activities during its life cycle. Smith and Baetz’s (1991) research also shows that until the 1990s, there was very little literature available detailing costing information on integrated waste management systems.
As mentioned before, most waste management models consider economic and environmental aspects, but very few consider social aspects. For a waste management system to be sustainable, it needs to be environmentally effective, economically affordable and socially acceptable. Nilsson-Djerf and McDougall (2000), who go on to say, “for a waste management system to be effective, it must be accepted by the population”. This point is further emphasized by Petts (2000), who states, “the most effective management of SW has to relate to local environmental, economic and social priorities” and must go beyond the traditional consultative approaches that require the “expert” to draft the solution in advance of public involvement to a much more effective approach by involving the public before key choices have been made.
Recent models echo a change in strategy by incorporating more profound issues that have been plaguing the effective management of solid wastes. Solid waste planning is not only being refurbished from relying solely on landfilling, to a wider range of waste management techniques based on the principle of ISWM, but also on more sociological and political aspects. Multiple attribute decision system (MADS) developed by Montano and Zandi (2000), treats SWM as a squishy problem and provides managerial and decision support for solid waste policymakers. MADS provides a comprehensive systems approach for solid waste system evaluation, decision support, accountability, and defensible solutions. Such an approach is particularly important for solid waste decision making because of the emotional and political nature of policy implementation. Based on this information above, all gaps identified ranging from scope to geographical was filled by this study, hence the association between the impediment to and optimization strategy for solid waste management becomes justified, therefore the researcher’s point of departure.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Clean environment and healthy population are obvious evidences of efficient solid waste management system. An efficient solid waste management involves appropriate collection, storage, treatment and disposal of solid wastes. Proper solid wastes management increases environmental aesthetics and quality, productivity, economic development, healthy living and high quality of life. Efficient solid waste management helps to avert far reaching health hazards and environmental consequences such as flooding and erosion.
Studies have shown that flooding and erosion have been of great challenge at Onitsha Urban in Anambra State due to poor solid wastes management. The researcher observed that at Onitsha Urban in Anambra State, wastes appear to be indiscriminately disposed in places that are not designated dumpsites by individuals. Thus, wastes are seen littered along the streets, vehicle parks, market places, roads and water paths. Consequently, when it rains, rain water carries these wastes into the drains and obstructs free water flow, thus, resulting in overflow of flood into roads and people’s homes destroying lives and properties. In places where people dump waste in containers placed at designated dumpsites, the containers are not regularly emptied. Wastes overflow on the ground and are left unattended to for a long time, serving as breeding sites for disease-causing organisms. These situations overtime, had led to land degradation in form of sheet and gully erosion which adversely affect over 70 per cent of land space. These are classed as solid waste disposal problems which manifested in Onitsha Urban practically and theoretically. It was also observed that the manner in which solid waste is being generated in Urban Onitsha is highly indiscriminate in that they are generated without any concern of how the solid waste would be managed appropriately and its effect on the eco-system, hence causing an impediment to solid waste management at Onitsha Urban in Anambra state. These impediments to solid waste management identified by the researcher which were solid waste generation and disposal were traced to inadequate optimization strategies such as public awareness/participation, solid waste recycling and solid waste re-use.
This situation points out that some impediments have been obstructing effective SWM in Onitsha Urban in Anambra State as evidenced in literature. This pricked the researcher to identify those impediments to and optimization strategies for SWM at Onitsha Urban in Anambra State.
1.3 Purpose and Objectives of the Study
The purpose of this study is to examine the association between the impediment to and optimization strategies for solid waste management at Onitsha Urban in Anambra State, Nigeria.
In this light, the following objectives were formulated for the study. They are:
- To ascertain the influence of public awareness on impediment to solid waste management at Onitsha Urban in Anambra State, Nigeria.
- To determine the influence of solid waste recycling on impediment to solid waste management at Onitsha Urban in Anambra State, Nigeria.
- To examine the impact of solid waste re-use on impediment to solid waste management at Onitsha Urban in Anambra State, Nigeria.
1.4 Research Questions
The following research questions were formulated for the study.
- To what extent does public awareness influence solid waste generation at Onitsha Urban Anambra State, Nigeria?
- To what extent does public awareness influence solid waste disposal at Onitsha Urban Anambra State, Nigeria?
- To what extent does solid waste recycling influence solid waste generation at Onitsha Urban Anambra State, Nigeria?
- To what extent does solid waste recycling influence solid waste disposal at Onitsha Urban Anambra State, Nigeria?
- To what extent does solid waste re-use influence solid waste generation at Onitsha Urban Anambra State, Nigeria?
- To what extent does solid waste re-use influence solid waste disposal at Onitsha Urban Anambra State, Nigeria?
The following null hypotheses were postulated to guide the study at 0.05 level of significance.
H01: There is no significant relationship between public awareness and solid waste generation of Onitsha Urban Anambra State, Nigeria.
H02: There is no significant relationship between public awareness and solid waste disposal of Onitsha Urban Anambra State, Nigeria.
H03: There is no significant relationship between solid waste recycling and solid waste generation of Onitsha Urban Anambra State, Nigeria.
H04: There is no significant relationship between solid waste recycling and solid waste disposal of Onitsha Urban Anambra State, Nigeria.
H05: There is no significant relationship between solid waste re-use and solid waste generation of Onitsha Urban Anambra State, Nigeria.
H06: There is no significant relationship between solid waste re-use and solid waste disposal of Onitsha Urban Anambra State, Nigeria.
1.6 Scope and Limitation of the Study
The scope of the study consists of three major aspects namely: content scope, study unit scope and geographical scope.
Content Scope: The content scope of this study is restricted to optimization strategies of solid waste management with dimensions as: public awareness on solid waste management, solid waste recycling and solid waste re-use while the measures of Impediments to solid waste management are: solid waste generation and sold waste disposal and the researcher has no intentions of studying outside these contents.
Study Unit Scope: The study unit scope of this study is adopted at the micro level because individual members of Onitsha Urban in Anambra state constituted the respondents for the study.
Geographical Scope: The geographical coverage of the study is Onitsha Urban in Anambra State, Nigeria.
The following were limitations encountered in the process of conducting this research, they include:
- Inadequate time frame as the time giving by the school authority is short for a research that needs more empirical literatures.
- Dearth in access of limited materials etc. but none of these limitations significantly affects the validity and reliability of this research outcome.
1.7 Significance of the Study
The study generated data on the impediments to, and optimization strategies for solid waste management among SW participants at Onitsha Urban in Anambra State.
The findings of the study will be beneficial to SWM agencies in devising better means for the administration of solid waste in the area of wastes generation and disposal in Onitsha Urban.
The findings of the study will also be helpful to government and Ministries of: Environment, Health, Urban and Regional Planning in making adjustments in policies and plans for promoting the efficiency of solid waste management for a cleaner environment in Onitsha Urban.
Findings on impediments to solid wastes collection management will be beneficial to SWM agencies to work on those factors that hinder effective disposal of solid wastes in Onitsha because such poor disposal pose a challenge.
Findings on impediments to solid wastes storage management will be beneficial to government, Ministry of Regional and Urban Planning and SWM agencies. The generated data could motivate Ministry of Regional and Urban Planning to create dump sites for wastes disposal. This will help SWM agencies to have space for dumping collected wastes, so that those wastes can be sorted and the decomposing parts sold to commercial farmers for use as manure. Also, the findings could motivate the government to provide technology for waste recycling in Onitsha so that waste does not occupy lands that can be used for more productive investments.
When this is done, there will be clean environment that will be beneficial to the general public who will enjoy increased environmental aesthetic and quality. The study’s findings on impediments to solid waste treatment will be beneficial to commercial farmers Ministries of: Environment; and Agriculture. The findings could motivate the ministry of environment to design measures that will be used in recycling waste into useful materials.
Findings from impediments to solid waste disposal will be beneficial to government, SWM agencies and all stake holders in and outside the State. The findings could motivate government and all stake holders to improve on road work and provide incinerators for proper management of wastes in the Onitsha, Urban.
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