Research Key

The socio-economic impact of waste management in the Bamenda ii municipality

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International: $20
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Analytical tool
Descriptive statistics
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Population growth, increasing urbanization and more demand for goods and services has caused a persistent rise in the volume of solid waste generation in the Bamenda II Municipality. This has resulted in socioeconomic implications. 

It is challenging that the management is becoming cumbersome as the dumping sites have been on rapid accumulation along major roads and streets of Bamenda II. This study aimed at assessing the socio-economic impact of waste management, the methods of the waste, challenges and possible solution.

Primary data were collected through field observations and interviews while secondary data were collected from relevant literature. The participants were categorized into two different groups based on their knowledge on waste management which includes the council’s officials and the local population.

The study concluded that there is a great sign with poor waste management on the socio-economic development of the Bamenda II Municipality. It is sad to say that human interaction with the environment is gradually causing an impact especially socio-economic development of the Municipality due to the inadequate trash cans, insufficiency vans to evacuate waste along the streets, due to the Anglophone crises presents in this region.

The study recommends the increase in waste disposal cans to ameliorate the socio-economic nuisances.   



1.1 Introduction

Waste management is the activities and actions required to manage waste from its inception to its final disposal. This includes the collection, transport, treatment and disposal together with monitoring and regulating of the waste management process(Davidsons, 2011).

Waste can be solid, liquid or gas, each type has different methods of disposal and management. Waste management deals with all types of waste including industrial, biological and household waste. Waste management is not uniform among countries (developed and developing nation), regions, urban and rural areas, residential and industrial sectors since all take a different approach.

A large portion of waste management practice deals with municipal solid waste which is the bulk of the waste that is created by households, industrial and commercial activities. Waste is a global issue if not properly manage, it poses a threat to public health and the environment.

Waste management is a growing issue and link directly to the way society produces and consumes. Waste management is one of the essential utility service underpinning society in the 21stCentury particularly in urban areas. It is a basic human need and can also be regarded as a basic human right ensuring proper sanitation.

Solid waste management, alongside the provision of potable water, shelter, food, energy, transport and communication is essential to society and the economy as a whole

Around the world, waste generation rate is rising. In the world, cities generated 2.10billion tons of solid waste, amounting to a footprint of 0.74kilograms per person per day (World Bank, 2002). With rapid population growth and urbanization, annual waste generation is expected to increase by 70% from 2021 to 3.40billions tone in 2050.

Compared to those developed nations, residents in developing countries, especially the urban poor, are more severely impacted by unsustainable waste management. In low-income countries, over 90% of waste is often disposed of in unregulated dumps or openly burned.

These practices create serious health safety and environmental consequences. Poorly managed waste serves as a breathing ground for disease vectors, contributes to global climate change through methane generation, and can even promote urban violence.

Managing waste properly is essential for building sustainable and livable cities in the developing world, but it remains a challenge for many developing countries. Growing population, a rising standard of living and lifestyle, industrialization, production and consumption of new products are acting in concert to generate waste increasingly greater quantities of solid waste, and this, in turn, is creating a serious problem in the management and properly dispose of.

Being aware of the implications of the problems of improper management and disposal, the developed countries continue to manage solid waste in what may be described of as primitive ways such as throwing into open and unregulated dumps.

The literature concerning most of these aspects (collection, transportation, treatment, reuse, recycle, recovery and disposal) of waste management, in Cameroon, is scared and or non-existent making it difficult to evaluate the current situation. A key driver towards increased efficiency in solid waste management is the involvement of all stakeholders including the waste generator, waste processor, formal and informal sector financial institution and private initiative such as non-governmental and community-based organizations(Baud et al, 2001).

Since the living standard in Cameroon has deteriorated particularly in the areas of health and education (World Bank 2002) of all sectors, municipal solid waste management has been one of the most affected uncollected and illegally disposed waste which pose serious risks to public health and the environment.

The prevalence of parasite, tetanus, malaria, hookworm, cholera and diarrhoea in many regions of Cameroon, like the presents of cholera in the far north region of Cameroon is attributed to an unsanitary condition caused by waste being simple strewn around cities, villages and other habited areas.

Also, in some region, the incident of flash floods, water pollution and littered landscape have been attributed to poor waste management in Cameroon like some areas in Douala. However, the country has still managed to develop a waste management system.

The Cameroon way is based on strong political will and concession arrangement with government local company HYSACAM (hygiene and health in Cameroon) was found in 1969 and is the country’s number one private waste management contractor. It is based in Douala and Yaounde and handles waste management services in 17 cities through the country. It collects over 1.5million tons of waste a year.

 At the dawn of the creation, there was the perfect balance between man and his environment in Bamenda II. Due to human activity on the environment, the stable equilibrium between man and his environment has been broken and hence the resultant environmental problems. The activities of man on the environment and the way he interacts with the environment influence the quality of life.

The daily activities of human to meet their basic needs and nutritional requirements for life sustenance has generated a lot of unwanted materials in the Bamenda II municipality. Due to the rapid increase in population, movement of people to the metropolitan areas and expansion of industries in Bamenda II, much pressure has been placed on solid wastes management and the task of solid waste management is difficult.

It now the unbeatable fact that, for a human to safeguard, control and promote the environment there must be some appropriate facilities for solid waste management. In the absence of such facilities, solid domestic waste posts a significant health menace in the society

Environmental sanitation is a grave concern to the government and policymaker in a bid to prevent disease occurrence. It is incumbent upon us then to act now to manage waste matter properly to avoid the occurrence or incident of communicable disease. The waste matter at different stages of decomposition is allowed to increase in size developing into hills and becoming an eyesore in the community with it associated stench that causes diseases such as upper respiratory tract infections.

There are no proper solid domestic waste management practices in some neighbourhood as they practice crude dumping. People deliberately ignore dump site dotted in the communities and throw solid waste on the open space and gutters. Some even defecate in polythene bags and leave them to litter the environment.

Waste management in BamendaII plays an integral role in human activity not only does it involves rational decision making about whether to bury, burn, recycle or produce less waste, it must also consider the impact to health and the environment.

Assessing the benefits and cost of various solid waste management policies in Bamenda II is very complex because, it involves numerous interconnected economic, social and biological components.

The barriers to effective municipal solid waste (MSW) management in Bamenda is not simply lack of policy but lack of equipment, education, social awareness of problems, solution, and lack of institutions promoting sustainable action. Barret and Sue (2001)assert that there is a pressing need to avoid or manage the damage that affects both people and the natural ecosystem.

1.2Problem Statement

The growing population of theBamendaIIMunicipality has led to an increase in the volume of waste generated, this has put pressure on waste management facilities which are already in short supply in Bamenda due to the political crises affecting this region.

The uncollected waste block drains, spread water-borne diseases and solid waste that are not properly disposed of. Also, especially excreta and other refuges from households and the communities are a serious health hazard which has led to the spread of infectious diseases.

This unattended waste lying around the Bamenda main market, Mankon and Ntarikonattract flies, rats and other creatures that in turn spread diseases. This has led to unhygienic condition thereby leading to a rise in the unhealthy society of Bamenda II municipality.

Also a lot of non-biodegradable waste, that is a substance that cannot be broken by the bacteria are generated and since non-biodegradable are not easily absorbed or diluted naturally, such waste accumulates in heaps along major streets, the stinking odour and blackish liquid effluence emanating from such heaps especially during the raining season constitute an environmental hazard and depredate the aesthetic values of our environment.

The inability for the Bamenda II Municipal council to sensitize the population about the impact of waste disposal on the environment has led to increasing dumping of waste along the main street of the Bamenda II municipality with neighbourhoods, such as big and smallMankon, old towns, Ntarikon were poor waste management pose problem to the society and the economics of these areas.

1.3Research Questions

What are the socio-economic impacts of the waste management system in Bamenda II?

1.3.1 Specific Question

  1. What are the methods of waste management in Bamenda II?
  2. What are the socio-economics implications of waste management?
  3. What are the challenges faced in the management of waste?
  4. What are the strategies for proper waste management systems in Bamenda II?

1.4Objectives of the study

The main objective of this study is to examine the socio-economic impact posed by waste management systems in Bamenda II municipality.

1.4.1 Specific objective

  1. To investigate the methods of waste management systems in the Bamenda II municipality
  2. To examine the social and economic implications of waste management
  3. To investigate the challenges faced by the council official in the management of waste.
  4. To suggest strategies for the proper waste system in Bamenda II municipality.
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