IMPACT OF HOUSEHOLD SOLID WASTE DISPOSAL PRACTICES ON THE ENVIRONMENT OF ENUGU METROPOLIS, NIGERIA.

IMPACT OF HOUSEHOLD SOLID WASTE DISPOSAL PRACTICES ON THE ENVIRONMENT OF ENUGU METROPOLIS, NIGERIA.

ABSTRACT

This research is aimed at determining the impact of household solid waste disposal practices on the environment of Enugu metropolis. This is with a view to developing appropriate strategies for improving solid waste disposal system in Enugu metropolis. The objectives of the study were to: (i) examine the existing nature of household solid waste disposal practices in Enugu metropolis, (ii) identify the pattern of household solid waste disposal practices, (iii) identify the environmental problems caused by household solid waste disposal practices, (iv) determine whether there is variation in the household solid waste disposal practices in Enugu metropolis and (v) determine whether there is variation in the environmental problems caused by household solid waste disposal practices among neighbourhoods in Enugu metropolis. Survey research design method was employed in this study. Data used in this study were collected from both secondary and primary sources. Secondary data were obtained from published material on household solid waste disposal practices. The primary data were collected with the aid of structured questionnaire which contained five major sections and 44 questions. The researcher-developed questionnaire was validated by three environmental professionals. The questions were structured using 5-point Likert scale. Reliability of the test instrument was determined using Crombach Alpha which yielded a correlation co-efficient of 0.95. A pilot survey was carried out to test the clarity of the questions on the questionnaire. The sample size of 1160 respondents (for both household heads and environmental stakeholders) representing 0.75% was determined from sample frame of 154,607 households (the city’s household population) using William’s formula. The stratified sampling technique was employed to select 1,160 households. However, 1,132 questionnaires representing 95% were returned and utilized. The household heads and environmental stakeholders in Enugu metropolis formed the respondents for the study. Two statistical techniques were used in this study. Principal component analysis (PCA) was used to identify and classify the existing nature, pattern and impact of household solid waste disposal practices on the environment in the first, second and third hypotheses respectfully. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to test other hypotheses at 0.05 significant level. The existing nature of household solid waste disposal practices in Enugu metropolis with their factor loading values were: dumping of household solid waste on the road (0.78), undeveloped plots (0.92), drainage system (0.69), illegal dumpsites (0.56), open spaces (0.63) and burning of household solid waste (0.96). The pattern of household solid waste disposal practices in Enugu metropolis with their factor loading values were: consistent pattern of illegal disposal of refuse in unapproved places (0.92), weekly pattern of refuse disposal by households (0.85), manual mode of disposal of household solid waste (0.97), consistent pattern of proper household solid waste disposal (0.95), house help as persons that dispose household solid waste (0.91) and consistent pattern of recycling and reuse of household solid waste (0.87). The impact of household solid waste disposal practices on the environment in Enugu metropolis were identified and classified as follows: breeding ground for diseases causing organisms (0.93), discharge of poisonous substance into the environment (0.91), source of disease infection (0.96), air pollution (0.90), aquatic effect (0.93), environmental nuisance (0.94), degradation of the environment (0.65), biological effect (0.69), urban heat (0.79) and crop contamination (0.68). There was significant variation (p < 0.05) in the household solid waste disposal practices in Enugu metropolis. There was no significant variation (p > 0.05) in the environmental problems caused by household solid waste disposal practices among neighbourhoods in Enugu metropolis. This implies that though household solid waste disposal practices may vary across neighbourhoods, whatever affects the environment from one side of the urban area affect the entire urban environment. The study therefore proposed integrated household solid waste disposal system, sustainable integrated household solid waste disposal process among other recommendations.