Benefit Cost Analysis of Solid Waste Management for the City of Qalqilia

Discussion Committee: 
Dr. Mohammad Almasri - Major Supervisor
Dr. Hafez Shaheen - Co-Supervisor
Dr. Maher Abu Madi - External Examiner
Dr. Anan Jayyousi - Internal Examiner
Dr. Mohammed Al Masri
Dr. Hafeth shaheen
Ibrahem Mohammad Nimer Hinde
Solid Waste Management (SWM) is of great concern for municipalities in the West Bank / Palestine especially after the transpired environmental problems of the low cost malpractices related to the existing dumps that pollute the environment. Cost studies have played an important role in evaluating waste disposal methods and advocating one option over another. This thesis aims at quantifying the benefits and costs of the solid waste management options in Qalqilia City in order to help future policy decisions, evaluating the existing SWM system and estimating the least cost option for managing solid waste in the City. Four options were discussed for the municipal solid waste (MSW) disposal in Qalqilia City and these are: Maintaining the existing situation (The do-nothing option); constructing a transfer station and transport MSW to Zahrat Al-Finjan Sanitary Landfill in Jenin District; constructing a sanitary landfill for Qalqilia City operated by the Municipality; making partial recycling to separate the recyclable materials and partial compost generation and then transfer the remaining part of the solid waste to Zahrat Al-Finjan sanitary landfill. Solid waste disposal options for Qalqilia City were evaluated based on cost analysis, where it was found that the first option which is maintaining the existing situation (the do-nothing option) has the largest cost which is 71.1$/ton, in addition to the negative environmental impacts on the groundwater and air pollution. This option also causes the most effect on the local property devaluation. In the absence of enough area for agricultural and housing purposes this option is considered detrimental economically and environmentally. If we ignore the local property devaluation, the environmental externalities and the cost of closure and post closure of the existing landfill then the cost drops to 42.6 $/ton. The second option; constructing a transfer station and transport the MSW to Zahrat Al-Finjan sanitary landfill, seems to be more economic than the first option where the cost of Municipal Solid Waste Management (MSWM) is 58.7 $/ton. Environmentally this option appears to be friendlier to the environment as the vulnerability of the groundwater and air pollution is less than that of the first option. If we ignore the cost of environmental externalities the cost becomes 57 $/ton. Making partial recycling for recyclables material and compost and transferring the remaining solid waste to Zahrat Al-Finjan sanitary landfill seems to be the most economical and environmental friendly from the other options. The cost of MSWM can be from 45.9$/ton to 52.3$/ton. This cost is according to the amount of municipal solid waste to be separated and recycled. This option provides more jobs and reduces the vulnerability of groundwater and air pollution. This option reduces the travel distance and fuel consumption by reducing the amount of MSW to be transported and land filled. Construction of sanitary landfill for Qalqilia City is conflicting with Environmental Quality Authority (EQA) policy, with highest capital cost in addition to lack of the required land, this option and privatization option need detailed study which is not covered in this thesis. Finally it was recommended that Qalqilia Municipality should have a specific project for the proper closure and post closure of the existing solid waste landfill. This project will eliminate the local property devaluation at the landfill area and protect the groundwater. It is recommended that Qalqilia Municipality starts to have pilot programs for solid waste separation and recycling in addition to the generation of compost especially that the city is located in an agricultural area. This will reduce the cost of SWM by reducing the amount of land filled waste and improves the environmental conditions in the city.
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