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Solid waste management system in Cameroon: Tiko municipality case study Down beach

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This research work accessed the Solid waste management system in Tiko municipality case study Down beach. Waste has been a major aspect on human concern, has its rate of generation on an increase since from the industrial revolution.

And increase in waste is mostly attributed in increase in a nation’s, city’s or community’s population activities without equivalent sustainability to help discard the waste as a result of the population.

Waste exist in different form such as soli, liquid and gas. Each of these have their methods that should be adopted for proper management and they can be grouped in to degradable and non-degradable waste some of which are toxic (hazardous) and non-toxic.

As stake, waste solid waste management is important because the absence of this management systems will lead to an increase in undisposed waste material that will spread to areas of human habitation causing health deficiencies and also, will contribute in the environmental depreciation.

Waste management has been a problem faced the globe but more exceedingly in developing nations like Cameroon and its cities and towns like Tiko.

This is because they do not possess the necessary equipment involved in good waste management, and also the absence of some management techniques such as reuse and incineration.

The main objective of this study isto investigate how solid waste is been managed in Tiko/down beach. Primary Data is collected through the administration of questionnaires.

Secondary data was obtained with the help of questionnaires. Other forms such as field observation and filed analysis, using of articles written waste management is done to obtain data.The data is analyze using inferential and descriptive data techniques.

The results revealed that the solid waste management system in Tiko/Down beach is poor due to improper and infrequent collection and disposal of waste by the waste management body. This has led to accumulation of waste in unwanted zones.


1.0  Introduction 

The chapter one below gives the overview of waste and waste management systems. This chapter examines the background of the study, statement of the problem, research question and objectives, research hypothesis and significant of the study in both scientifically and in social domain.

1.1 Background of the study;

Nowadays, we suffer from environmental decimas such as global warming flash floods and many more. One of the major causes of these problem is the poor management systems put in place to help the society overcome these problems.

And also, some people just don’t follow laws and instructions put in place to help prevent these environmental and health hazards. One of the systems that seemed to have failed the world in both developed and developing nations is the waste management systems.

The miss management of the waste management systems has led to major challenges in not only some cities or nations but the globe especially in rapid growing cities of the developing countries (Foo, 1997).

A harsh rate of population growth and increasing per capita income has resulted in the generation of an enormous volume of solid waste which poses a serious threat to the environmental and health of humans in the surrounding areas (Snigha 2003). Access to the sanition services and clean water are therefore crucial to the health and well being of the population.

Wastes management system refers to the collection, transportation, processing or disposal, managing and monitoring waste materials.

The term is related to materials produced by human action on daily bases and this management process is usually undertaken to reduce their effects on the health, environment or aesthetics. It is a distinct practice from resource recovery which focuses on natural resources. All waste material whether solid, liquid, gas or radioactive fall within the remit of waste management.

Waste management practices can differ from cities to cities and nations to nations (developed from developing nations). As a city or nation becomes industrialized, the congenital problem of waste management comes along with it.

This is a crucial factor as it goes a long way to affects the lifestyle of the population, rate of consumption of resources (resource consumption pattern), jobs and income levels which tends to increase, socio-economical aspect and some political aspects too.

Technological and economic advancement has made the types and nature of waste generated to be more complex and highly divers.

This plays a dreadful roll on making the disposition of waste very difficult especially with non-decomposing waste. As a result, may areas in industrialized zone are faces with the problem of illegal dumping of waste of all king the most particular being solid waste.

The accumulation of these waste in the vicinities inhabited by people has led to the out break of certain diseases such as cholera as well as diarrheal diseases in recent time which corroborate this fact.

Furthermore, rapid urbanization and changes in economic trend tends to complicate solid waste management system and this is particular to developing countries.

Detail studies show that in recent times, solid waste doesn’t only increase in composition but also in quantity from a few kilograms to a tonnage proportion (Bartone, 1993).

The increasing amount of Municipal Solid Wastes (MSW) in developing countries presents greater challenges with respect to proper and sustainable solutions to managing such generated waste.

With increasing population and economic activity and rapidly changing lifestyles, Cameroon like many developing countries, is faced with greater challenges towards managing solid waste.

More so, failure to embark on better approaches to Municipal Solid Waste Management (MSWM) and/or negligence of the issue gets to compound the problem.

While waste may be land-filled or reprocessed for energy, other options like recycling and material recovery for subsequent reuse also present enormous opportunities for waste management with economic and ecological benefits.

Whether a given community operates a standard MSWM scheme or not, there exist some operations and practices, which characterize how such a community goes about the waste problem.

Thus an understanding of environmental behavior (Oskamp, 2000) and an assessment of existing MSWM schemes can be very vital in not only the enhancement of such schemes but in designing more sustainable options.Analyzing the MSW stream for a given community or region over time as well as choosing appropriate approaches is also useful in MSWM studies.

Two approaches in use include: „material flow approach‟ and the „output method‟ and both have their merits and demerits. The material flow approach in estimating waste stream percentages within various categories of waste considers waste as an end result of production thereby incorporating production and expected lifecycle of products (McCauley-Bell et al., 1997).

This approach has the advantage that waste stream can be estimated over broader geographic scales hence good for country basis and not local studies (Reinhardt and McCauley-Bell, 1996). However, a main criticism of this approach is that it focuses on product categories thereby excluding waste components not consequent of production.

The output method is best applied to waste composition studies often at disposal sites and involves sampling, sorting, and weighing of individual categories of waste stream (Tchobanoglous et al., 1993).

The output approach is very good for localized studies as it provides information unique to local planning for collection, recycling, treatment and disposal. However, a disadvantage of this approach is the cost associated (see Reinhardt and McCauley-Bell, 1996).

Within the past two decades, there has been growing concern on environmental related issues in Cameroon. A gloomy picture of such growing concerns can be vividly grasped from the number of small-scale local environmental groups that has sprung up within this time.

The main goals of these groups basically have to do with enhancing environmental sustainability/improving agricultural yields on the one hand and helping local communities in reaping some economic benefits on the other within socio-culturally accommodating conditions.

In MSW generated within cities of Cameroon (especially Tiko), plasics, paper and ferrous/non-ferrous metal occur in significant amount (Achankeng 2003) that serves as a pointer to investigate possibilities for recycling, disposal or maybe recovery of such components.

Although developing countries like Cameroon still face several challenges in managing commingled wastes, recovering and recycling individual components of the waste stream for reuse and production of recycled-based products is economically plausible.

Despite the fact that suitably organized collection systems may be lacking, individual components can still be recovered through locally adaptable designed approaches.

Such individual components that can be recovered and recycled include: aluminum, plastics, paper and other components of Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipments (WEEE).

Electronic waste generation is also on an increase in Cameroon and most of such waste stays longer within households (Asong and Nkemnkeng, 2006). Such wastes for example, constitute a major contributor of lead to landfills (Saphores et al., 2006).

Of great importance in a collection scheme is the role played by consumers or the public. Although this group is critical to success in recycling, it may not be the question of how many people do participate but how well they do (Thomas, 2001).

Thus the values people place on and the attitude they show towards environmental issues can be seen as a measure of how well they may participate in recycling and recovery. 

This study seeks to investigate the MSWM problem from the view point of recycling and material recovery. And for such options to make meaning in a MSWM system the generation and characteristics of waste have to be known since any attempts towards recycling would involve material from waste stream.

Local practices in waste management as well as recovery of components can also give clues to expanding existing schemes as well as creating avenues for innovations. Thus, this research sought to investigate the MSWM system and problems in Tiko municipality in Cameroon with the case study being Down Beach.

Located in the Southwest region, Down Beach is situated at the out sketch of the Tiko municipality and is bounded on one side by the Atlantic Ocean which arms protrude as beaches in the local area.

Stated by Wilson et al (2001), many municipalities and localities are faced with the constrain of time, finance and technical resource to make reasonable decisions about the preferred MSWM options.

Thus, for each locality, data on waste generation and characterization needs to be investigated as elements of good management planning.

1.2: Statement of Problem:

Waste is a significant global issue. Increase in the volume of waste is being generated as the population of a nation and even the world at large increases alongside their standard of living.

The environmental is significant with massive volume of waste generated annually with only basic or little treatment and management to minimize its impact.

The locality of Down beach is faced with this problem as the community lack the access to a good management system to handle the problem of waste.

Certain municipal laws have been put in place to help the situation (such as community labor) however, this has very little improve the management scheme of waste in down beach as people still dump waste in open areas.(Global pearl clean)

A large amount of municipal waste that is being generated within the localities of Tiko (long street, down beach, boma street just to name a few) from sources such as markets, households, provision stores, drinking spots and more are left generally unmanaged.

The waste collection and disposal company, HYSACAM does not contend with the amount of waste generated per day and as a result, garbage is scattered.

The area of Down beach not only produce large quantities of solid waste but also generate different types of waste.

This has caused a major problem such as pollution of streams due to poor waste disposal, illegal dumping, nasty environment, beach pollution and an incident in stinking smells which might go a long away to affect the health condition of the population.

Also, low or no concern of the Tiko council to oversee this issue has help in the accumulation of waste generated and dumped in streams and open areas.(Journal of pollution effects and control by Mbah Robert 2020)

1.3 Research Questions

The main research question for this study was;

  • how is the solid waste management system organized in Tiko?

Sub research questions were;

  • What type of solid waste is being generated?

  • What is the structure of management of solid waste?

  • Is there an organ responsible for the management of waste?

  • What are some challenges faced in waste management scheme?

  • What are some measures to mitigate waste management challenges?

1.4 Objective of the Study

The main objective of this study is to

  • Investigate how solid waste is been managed in Tiko/down beach

The specific objectives were:

  • To examine the types of solid waste in Down beach
  • To investigate the management scheme
  • To investigate the challenges faced in waste management
  • To provide solutions and suggestions to mitigate waste management challenges.



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