Generation, Composition and Characteristics of Urban Solid Waste in a Major Khat Producing and Marketing Area in Eastern Ethiopia

Beneberu Shimelis
Empirical knowledge about urban solid waste is essential for planning and implementation of proper waste management systems. Thus, the objective of this study is to characterize the solid waste generated in a rapidly growing town of Aweday. For this, randomly selected samples of 93 Households (HHs), 23 Khat Rooms, 17 street Shops and a Khat Market centre were involved in the study. Wastes, collected from all these sources, were characterized for a week. The finding showed waste generation rates were 5.55 kg HH-1 day-1, 5.48 kg shop-1 day-1, 67.15 kg Khat-room-1 day-1 and 11,745 kg Khat-market-1 day-1. Moreover, the finding indicated that about 57,039 kg of total waste generated daily in Aweday town. Household waste formed the highest average daily amount (51%) and the Khat Rooms ranked second (25%) while those from the Market (21%) and Shops (3%) followed. The wastes from each source were categorized into 11 components. Mixed leaves of Khat, garaba, constituted the largest (75%), followed by miscellaneous materials (14%) and plastics (3.3%). Bones, glasses, leathers and metals wastages were minor fractions across generators. The generation of waste positively correlated with family size, monthly income and educational levels of the households. The results indicts the high organic content of the waste spotlight the necessity for frequent collection as well as an opportunity to give top priority to the recycling of the organic waste materials through composting as waste management approach in Aweday. An addition, the charge of waste collection and disposal should be fixed according to the quantity of waste generated.
Urban solid waste; Khat, waste generation rate; waste composition; waste management; Ethiopia
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