GIS Based Mapping and Analysis of Municipal Solid Waste Collection System in Wa, Ghana


Collection of Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) is important in every waste management program. Communal container collection systems appear most prevalent in many developing countries. However, this collection system is associated with problems such as overflow of waste containers, ground dumping at collection sites, and open/indiscriminate dumping at unauthorized places. The spatial distribution of these activities present potential contamination challenges to water resources. Spatial information on Municipal Solid Waste Collection/Dump Sites (MSWCS) is essential for Municipal Solid Waste Management (MSWM) decision-making, including siting and collection route planning, and dumps cleanup. Integration of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Global Positioning Systems (GPS) present a platform to capture, map, and analyze spatial MSWM issues. This study applied GIS and GPS technologies to map MSWCS in Wa town, Ghana. Wa Municipality waste collection system efficiency was analyzed based on spatial availability of communal containers. A GIS model was developed and used to analyze proximity of MSWCS to boreholes drinking water sources. A pollution risk map was also developed to analyze the potential impact of indiscriminate dumps on hand-dug wells and surface water in Wa. The results reveal poor management in a significant number (about 67%) of MSWCS sites. Fifteen percent of mechanized boreholes failed the minimum proximity requirement (≥100 m) of the model. This study findings illustrate that MSWM in developing countries may be improved using GIS and GPS technologies. The approach used for Wa could be replicated in other towns in Ghana and other developing nations with similar MSWM problems to enhance policy and management decision-making.

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Abdulai, H. , Hussein, R. , Bevilacqua, E. and Storrings, M. (2015) GIS Based Mapping and Analysis of Municipal Solid Waste Collection System in Wa, Ghana. Journal of Geographic Information System, 7, 85-94. doi: 10.4236/jgis.2015.72008.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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