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Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Port Harcourt, Choba P.M.B. 5323, Port Harcourt,

+2348035386779*, +2348065458698** AND +2348056320209***


The physical characterization of solid waste generated at the University of Port Harcourt, Rivers state, Nigeria was carried out for the three campuses situated at the university. The quartering method was used to physically quantify the various waste components. The solid waste types were observed to comprise of plastic (38.33%), paper (23.33%), glass (4.8%), tin (3.2%), wood (1.9%), leather (1.2%), yard waste (9.45%), textile (1.0%), food waste (11.03%) and ash/dirt (5.03%). The average moisture content as-discarded, density and solid waste generation rate were observed to be 16.81%, 564.15kg/m3 and 0.55kg/capital/day respectively. However, there was no significant difference amongst the waste type generated within the three campuses at 95% confidence interval when analyzed with one-way analyses of variance. In order to understand the suitability of the solid waste as a possible source of energy, an estimation of energy content was carried out. The energy content of the solid waste was observed to be 18.43MJ/kg which is significant, hence, it can be used for energy generation at the university campus. Keywords: waste types, components, energy content, generation, massincineration.

INTRODUCTION It is well known that human activities create waste and these wastes must be properly handled stored, collected, processed, and disposed of to reduce the risk they will pose to the general public. The rate of solid waste generation has been on the increase due to increase in human population (Cunninghams et al 2005; Zurbrugg, 2003; Sridhar and Ojediran, 1983). In developed countries, proper waste management practices have lead to reduced environmental and health implication associated with solid wastes, due to formation and implementation of sustainable policies designed to protect human lifes and the environment in general. However, in developing countries the consequence of improper solid waste management is overwhelming due to lack of proper policies to manage solid waste problems. Solid wastes have been observed to block drains leading to episodes of flooding (UNEP-1ETC 1996). Also, dump sites have become breeding grounds for insects, rodents responsible for disease proliferation among the population (Kungskulniti, 1990; Lohani, 1984). This poor management practice in developing countries persist despites the enormous benefits that could be derived from implementing proper waste management program. The implementation of proper solid waste management program has the potential to support the principles of sustainable development. The practice of reuse and recycling of solid waste in form of compost, biogas and materials recovery, if properly utilized by developing countries can help to alleviate poverty and reduce problems of joblessness (World Bank, 2001; Cunninghams et al, 2005). Also, waste to energy programs that convert combustible waste fraction of municipal solid waste into electrical energy in controlled incinerator or combustor power plants can supplement or contribute to the generation of decentralized electrical energy. This method of solid waste management is historical to developed countries like Japan that burns about two-third of its wastes, Germany and France that burn 30 and 40% of its waste respectively for power generation (Gilbert, 1998). Thus, in order to achieve a sustainable waste management program an adequate knowledge about the types of waste generated is needed. This will enable for proper selection of suitable management practice/technology that can be applied to achieve this goal (Zurbrugg, 2002). MATERIALS AND METHODS The University of Port Harcourt in Rivers State, Nigeria comprises of three campuses:

(i) Abuja Part Campus: This campus is the largest with high population density. Most of the
residential buildings of the university staffs are found in this campus.

(ii) Delta Park Campus: This campus is the hob of administration. It also contains hostels for
female undergraduate students and few residential buildings for staffs of the university.


Choba Park Campus: This campus is the centre of commercial activities. It is the

smallest of the three campuses with hostels to accommodate male students of the university.

In order to properly manage solid waste generated at the University, a unit known as the Campus Environmental Beautification and Sanitation (CEBAS) was created. This unit ensures that refuse are collected by contracted waste managers from locations which have been classified into three zones. Each zone has a number of collection points with a final disposal site. Solid wastes characterization was carried out at the final disposal site after a day activity. The major collection system used at the university premises is the stationary collection system of waste collection (SCS) with collection trucks of dimensions 0.5m by 1.8m by 3m. . The weight of refuse was determined before loading into the collection truck using a weighing balance. The itemization of the individual components, moisture content and density of solid waste generated at the University was carried out at the respective zones in the three campuses. The quartering method as described by Tchobanoglous et al (1993); Hasselriis, (1984) and Klee, (1970) was employed for this purpose. The density of solid waste as-discarded was determined with Equation (1)

Density of solid waste as-discarded


The moisture content as percentage wet weight of solid waste (Pw) and dry weight (Pd) of the solid waste components were determined from typical values as presented by Tchobanoglous et al., (1993) (Table 1) using Equation (2) and (3). In determining the moisture content for various waste types, a 100kg sample was assumed as the basis.
Pw = Pd = W x100 Sw W x100 Sd

(2) .. (3)


..... (4) While the Mass of waste fraction (kg) can be represented by Equation (5)


Pw = moisture content as a percentage wet weight of solid waste Pd = moisture content as a percentage dry weight of solid waste Sd = dry weight of solid waste (kg)

Sw = wet weight of solid waste (kg) assumed as 100kg W = total moisture content (kg)

Table 1: components







Components plastic papers glass tin wood leather yard waste textile food waste ash,dirt,etc

Moisture content (%) 2.00 6.00 2.00 3.00 20.00 10.00 60.00 10.00 70.00 8.00

Source; Tchobanoglous et al (1993) In order to assess the heating value (energy content) of the waste generated, the Equation (6) as developed by Khan and Abu-Gharah (1991) was employed. .. (6)

RESULT AND DISCUSSION The number of trips made to the final disposal site for Abuja, Choba and Delta park campuses (zones) were 8, 6 and 4 trips per day respectively. It was observed that the weight per trip/day was approximately 152.2kg. With a population of approximately 50,000 persons (CEBAS, 2009), the solid waste generation rate was determined to be 0.55kg/capital /day (Table 2). Figures 1-3 show the corresponding composition of various waste components as determined for the three campuses. Plastic materials within the three campuses ranged between 35.3% - 41.7% by weight and it was the most abundant waste type identified at the University of Port Harcourt. Polyethylene sachet for packaging table water popularly called pure water, soft drinks, cosmetics products and disposable bags contributed to the total amount of plastic materials. Paper and food waste ranked second and third respectively in abundance ranging between 21.8% - 25% and 10.3% - 12.3%by weight, respectively. Yard waste ranked fourth ranging between 8% - 10.3% followed by ash, dirts, and bottles which ranked fifth and sixth between the range of 3.2%

- 6.4% and 4% - 6% by weight, respectively. Tin and wood ranked seventh and eight respectively while textile and leather were the lowest components ranking ninth and tenth and ranged between 1% - 2% and 0.6% - 1.8% by weight, respectively. The average composition of waste types generated in the university was thus observed to comprise of plastic (38.33%), paper (23.33%), glass (4.8%), tin (3.2%), wood (1.9%), leather (1.2%), yard waste (9.45%), textile (1.0%), food waste (11.03%) and ash/dirt (5.03%). The high amount of paper and food waste may be attributed to the nature of the area of study, being an academic institution. Table 2: Solid waste loading character at the University of Port Harcourt Zone Abuja park Choba park Delta park Total Number Of Trips/day 8 6 4 18 Weight Of Refuse per Day (kg/d) 12,185.60 9,129.20 6,092.80 27,407.60 Volume Of Refuse (m3/ d) 21.60 16.20 10.80 48.60 Density As-Discarded (kg/m3) 564.15 564.15 564.15

Figure 4 shows the relative distribution of the various waste types within the three campuses. However, a one way analysis of variance (ANOVA) to establish if any significance difference existed in the solid waste types generated within the three campuses was carried out using Microsoft Excel ANOVA function. ANOVA revealed that solid waste types generated within the three campuses was not significantly different from each other at 95% confidence interval. A critical F-value of 3.35 was observed against a calculated F-value of 0.000181 which implies a case of no significant difference amongst the solid waste types generated within the three campuses.

The moisture contents of solid waste as a percent wet weight (Pw) were observed for Abuja park, Choba park, and Delta park to be, 17.09%, 18.06% and 15.3% respectively, while the moisture contents as a percent of dry weight (Pd) were observed for Abuja park Choba park and Delta park campuses as 20.6% and 22.03%, 18.67%, from the Equation (1) and (2) respectively. These values are close to that determined by Igoni et al (2006), who determined the liquid composition of solid waste in Port Harcourt metropolises to be 19.1% Table 3: Moisture content (kg) of solid waste at university of Port Harcourt campuses Components Abuja park campus Choba park campus Delta park campus plastic 0.706 0.76 0.834 papers 1.482 1.5 1.308 glass 0.088 0.08 0.12 tin 0.129 0.045 0.12 wood 0.46 0.4 0.32 leather 0.18 0.06 0.14 yard waste 6.18 6.06 4.8 textile 0 0.1 0.2 food waste 7.35 8.61 7.21 Ash ,dirt, etc 0.512 0.44 0.256 Total (kg) 17.087 18.055 15.308

Table 4 : Dry weight (kg) of solid waste at university of Port Harcourt campuses Components Abuja park campus Choba park campus Delta park campus plastic 34.594 37.240 40.866 papers 23.218 23.500 20.492 glass 4.312 3.920 5.880 tin 4.171 1.455 3.880 wood 1.840 1.600 1.280 leather 1.620 0.540 1.260 yard waste 4.120 4.040 3.200 textile 0.000 0.900 1.800 food waste 3.150 3.690 3.090 Ash, dirt, etc 5.888 5.060 2.944 Total (kg) 82.913 81.945 84.692

The high amount of plastic, paper and food wastes suggest that solid waste may be amenable to various waste management technology options. Segregation of plastic paper waste for recycling purpose, separation of food waste for compost or biogas generation or incineration of the entire waste types are possible options available in handling waste generated in the university of port Harcourt campuses. However, due to the tedious nature of segregation and separation of solid waste the combustion of the entire waste types generated at the university may be a feasible option. Also, because the moisture content of the solid waste types observed in this study was not so high with little inert materials, combustion in a controlled incinerator may provide a suitable means of solid waste reduction. The energy content estimation of solid waste is useful in assessing if the solid waste can be a source of energy for electricity generation when combusted in a controlled incinerator whereby, the heat produced from the combustion of these solid waste is utilized in boilers that convert water to steam which in turn can be used to drive turbines that eventually converts mechanical energy to electrical energy (Tchbanoglous et al, 1993; Edward, 2001). Equation (6) is very effective in estimating the energy content of solid wastes, when the amount of yard waste is small enough to be neglected. Substituting PLR, CP, and F into the Equation (6), the energy content of solid waste generated in Abuja Park, Choba Park and Delta park campuses were estimated to be 17.5, 18.6 and 19.2 MJ/kg respectively. These values are only approximations because the yard wastes content are not small enough to be neglected. Nonetheless, the values obtained are high when compared to the heating value of sub- bituminous coal which is 19.4 MJ/kg (EPRI, 1997) and (USDOE, 1997). Thus, with an average energy content of 18.43MJ/kg and a total solid waste generation rate of 27,407kg/day from the three campuses (as shown in Table 2) simulation of electrical output can be carried out by assuming different operating overall efficiencies for the mass-fired combustor (incinerator) power

plant. The overall efficiency of a mass-fired combustor power plant is given by Equation (7) (Edward, 2001).

However, the energy input is the product of the flow rate of fuel source which in this case is solid waste of about 27,407kg/day and the heating value of the fuel (Edward, 2001). Therefore,

Hence, the potential for electrical energy generation for a fuel mass fed rate of 27,407kg/day, heating value of 18.43MJ/kg and assumed overall efficiency values that range between 0.1 to 1.0 can be projected as shown in Figure 5. It is important to note that the output would be as follows; It can be observed that, if the combustion plant was to operate at 10% efficiency, as much as 584.6kW of electricity can be generated each day while as much as 2923.1kW of electricity can be generated each day at 50% efficiency (Fig. 5) . For example, if the combustor power plant were to operate at an assumed overall efficiency of 0.1, then the energy

CONCLUSION The solid waste generated at the University of Port Harcourt was observed to be comprised largely of combustible materials, with plastic/polyethylene being the most abundant waste type in the


three campuses paper, food waste and yard waste ranked second third and fourth in abundance respectively. The average energy content of the solid waste from the three campuses was observed to be close to that of sub-bituminous coal. The suitability of solid waste generated at the University of Port Harcourt as a source of energy in mass-fired incinerator was assessed to be a feasible source of electrical energy even if the mass-fired incinerator operated as an efficiency of 30%. REFERENCE CEBAS, 2009. Campus Environmental Beautification and Sanitation, University of Port- Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria, Data Log. Cunningham,W. P. Cunninghams, M. T, and B.W Saigo .2005. Environmental Science: A Global Concern, 8th Edition McGraw Hills NY pp.78-90. Edward, S.R. 2001. Introduction to Engineering and the Environment, McGraw Hill Water Resources and Environmental Engineering series, 1st Edition. U.S, pp. 163-178. EPRI 1997, Power Plant Chemical Assessment Model Version 2.0 CM-107036 VI, Electric Power Research Institute, Palo Alto CA pp.367-379 Gilbert, M.M 1998, Introduction to Environmental Engineering and Science, 2nd Ed. Prentice-Hall Inc. New Delhi, p.612. Hasselriis, F .1984. Refuse Derived Fuel, An Ann Arbor Science Book Butterworth Publisher Boston, and p.67. Igoni, A.H, Ayotamuno, M. J, Ogaji S.O.T. and S.D Probert 2006. Municipal Solid-Waste in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, Applied Energy, Vol. 84(6) pp. 664-670. Khan, Z.A and Z.H Abu-Gharah. 1991. New Approaches for Estimating Energy Content in MSW, ASCE Journal of Environmental Engineering 117(3): 376-380 Klee A. J. and D. Carruth. 1970. Sample Weights in Solid Waste Composition Studies, ASCE Journal of the Sanitary Engineering Division, Vol 96, No 5A, pp. 345-354 Kungskulniti, N.1990. Public Health Aspects of a Solid Waste Scavenger Community in Thailand, Waste Management and Research 8 (2), 167-170. Lohani, B. N.1984. Recycling Potential of solid Waste in Asia Through Organized Scavenging Conservation and Recycling 7(2-4), 181-190. Sridhar, M.K.C and O. Ojediran. 1983. The Problems and Prospects of Refuse in Ibadan City, Nigeria. , Senate Committee on Environment and Ecology, Solid Waste Management in the 21st century Nigeria, pp.1-8 Tchobanoglous. G, Theisen H, and S.Vigil. 1993. Integrated Solid Waste Management: Engineering Principles and Management Issues. McGraw Hill U.S, pp.292-295 UNEP-IETC,HIID, 1996. International Source Book on Environmentally Sound Technologies for Municipal Solid Waste Management United Nation Environment Programme






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