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In Nigeria and particularly in Zaria city of Kaduna state, open dumping is still the most common household waste disposal method/practice. This type of practice is un hygienic and environmentally unfriendly. This research is aimed at effective household waste management practices in the study area. The research found that there are some other types of management or disposal method in practice in the study area, these include the use of packing and burning, dumping in pits outside the house and dumping in streets by residents, wheel barrows. Also included are  scavengers, Ministry of Environment and private organizations that are involved in household waste. Data for the study include the use of observations, questionnaire administration and oral interviews in data gathering and analysis. The research, recommends that the state government should provide household waste management equipment and vehicles, generators on loan for waste management authorities. Waste management such as the construction of sanitary land fills, purchase of incinerators for recycling plants, encourage waste to wealth practices as this would actually reduce the amount of waste that would be physically available in the study area.



One of the greatest hazards of man today is poor sanitary condition of his environment, which is being caused by his daily activities, such as waste generation, increase in population and attendant increase in agricultural, industrial and commercial activities.


Wastes are substances, materials or objects discarded as worthless or unwanted, defective or of no further value for human economic productive, activities or processes (Okechukwu, 1995).

U.S AD-Hoc Group for science and technology (1969), and Adegoke (1990) defined waste as substances and materials or objects which are disposed off according to the provision of a national law. Basically, wastes can exist in three different states-gaseous, liquid and solid. The people are more sensitive to solid waste than to the others. This is because solid wastes have the potential of accumulating and physically insulting the environment.

In the past, the advance effects of human activities were spread over large expense of land and sea. With the measure increase in pollution in recent times and the growth of cities and rapid industrialization, waste discharge have multiplies concentrated at a few model points.

Solid wastes are unwanted materials that cannot flow directly into steams or rise immediately in the air. They are non-liquid, non-gaseous residues of manufacturing, construction, cooking, recreation, agriculture and other activities that use and then discard materials.


They include glasses, bottles, outdated newspapers, carton, plastic, bottles, abandoned automobiles and automobiles parts, discarded cooking utensils, wraps, dead animals et cet era.

Effective solid waste management is achievable only when socio-economic factors are integrated into solid waste management studies. This approach would, according to Hudson and Marks (1977), make it possible to predict not only the expenditure pattern of a household and how much waste would be generated by each particular item consumed, but also the qualities of wastes generated by household. The first note worthy attempt at studying this problem based on this approach was made by Boyd and Hawkins (1971) With limited success, it would be argued that this approach may make it possible to transform the data generated into an input a national solid waste generation projection since that household is the basic wait of consumption and waste generation. Projection of this nature would assist urban environmental planner to better and rationally tackle this problem of waste urban areas. In addition, waste management agencies may use the results of such studies as an instrument for improving or initiating innovations in waste management practices.

It is the realization of the need to highlight the socio-economic aspects of wastes generation and management and their implication for solid wastes managements that provided a case for the present study of Zaria city area of Kaduna state.


Improper waste management leads to pollution and subsequently degradation of the environment. It also adds substances that affect the environment, which because of their nature and quantity constitute a menace to the health and well being of the  individuals, the society and the environment as a whole. The Environmental Act of the United  Kingdom defines waste as any substance or object which the holder discards or intends to discard (Freeman, 1990).

The available infrastructure for absorbing wastes generated by urban dwellers in Nigeria is grossly inadequate, consequently uncontrolled proliferation of solid wastes dumps is a common feature of most Nigerian cities. These solid wastes appears in various sizes. For example, they could be small, medium, or large depending on the number of households that the dumps serve. In most cases, these dumps are located at the backyards of the dwelling units, roadsides, gutters, streams, abandoned buildings and so on.

Most solid waste dumps are usually invaded by scavenging animals which scatter the wastes to make them breeding grounds for disease vector such as rats and flies. Besides direct contamination of water bodies by these waste, leachartes from decomposing and purifying solid wastes percolate into soil and nearby water sources which could cause disease to humans when consumed. This is particularly the case of un-collected solid wastes which find their way either back to the neighborhoods or into open river channels which become blocked, thus creating favorable breeding grounds for mosquitoes and in some cases block drainage ways, causing floods.

For solid wastes to be effectively managed to ensure the acceptable level of environmental quality required for sustainable growth and development in the urban settings, developing or applying accurate methods of estimating the amount of waste generated and disposed constitute a fertile area of research.

Such methods require accurate information on the types and quantities of solid wastes, generated by households the socio economic profiles of the household waste management systems and mechanisms used by the households and the waste disposal strategies.


Household waste generation increases due to increase in population and household activities. The cost of maintaining the environmental quality also increases as government now have much more wastes to dispose.

Household waste management and practice is amongst the problems affecting Zaria City. Despite the setting up of  Kaduna State Environmental Protection Agency (KEPA), the situation has remain largely characterized by  indiscriminate dumping of wastes, such as food waste, paper, polythene, scrap mutals et cet era, in virtually everything every part of of the area and have constituted problems like heap waste which can cause road/rail blockage, air pollution, open air burning, leach ate which has adversely affected the general aesthetic nature of the environment. This problem also causes some health related problems due to the incidence of improper waste management practices such as cholera, typhoid, malaria and diahroea for solid wastes to be effectively managed to incur the acceptable level of environment in the urban settings developing or applying accurate methods of estimating the amounts of waste generated and disposed constitute a fertile area of research.

Such methods require accurate information on the types and quantities of solid waste generated by household waste management systems mechanisms used by the households and the knowledge, the information required for proper household waste generation, management and disposal in Zaria city is locking. The research questions predicating the study are:

  1. What quantities of each types of waste are generated by the households in Zaria
  2. What quantities of each types of waste are generated by the households?
  3. What are the major socio-economic characteristics of the households?
  4. What major household chores generate these wastes?
  5. What are the solid wastes management strategies?
  6. In what ways do the household characteristics influence these solid waste generation and management strategies?
  7. Are these influence uniform or do they differ from household to household or from one study area to another.

1.3     AIM

The aim of this research is to examine the types of household solid waste management practices with a view of indentify the most appropriation method for Zaria City.


The aim of the research will be achieved through the following objectives;

  1. To identify the types of waste generated
  2. To identify the management practices being adopted by households in the area
  3. To identify the hazards of solid waste to the in habitats and environment of Zaria.
  4. To recommend appropriate measure to comb indiscrimination dumping of solid waste.


The world is becoming increasingly urbanized. The outbreak of diseases and the associated environmental problems are increasing in frequency and magnitude. However, government at the local, state and federal levels with non-governmental agencies have shared little concern to the issue of improper household waste management in the study area. The research therefore, intends to suggest a better waste management practice in the study area.

In the study area, much solid wastes are being generated by the households on daily basis. The waste is usually left un cleared for about two weeks before the waste are reluctantly rumpled into gutters or at the designated sites. The households use various methods in during this. This ranges from drums and buckets to refuse bin with lid or without lid and packed by boys using wheel barrows to empty it.

This methods seen not to be affective, this is due to the fact that the refuse/ wastes smell in the compound and eventually leads to outbreak of disease such as diarrhea, cholera et cet era.

This work shall therefore suggest a better practice of waste management in the study area.

This will go along way to eliminate the effects of late evacuation of waste, either from the compounds or at the designated points.

1.6     STUDY AREA


Zaria is one of the major cities in Kaduna state and the second largest after Kaduna with a total population of 408,198 (NPC, 2006). It lies between the co-ordinates of 11o-04on and 7o42e. Here it shares common boundaries with Soba local government to the east, Igabi local Government to the south, Giwa local Government to the west and Sabon Gari Local Government to the north, (fig 2) Zaria is linked by both rail way and good roads, which serve as a link to many other states in the north.



1.6.2  Geology and relief

The Zaria area is a dissected point of north central plains, an extensive peneplain in developed loamy stalline by stalling metamorphic rocks of the Nigerian basement complex.

Residual granite inset bergs, the largest of which is Kufena hill, provide the main relief and there are 100 quartzite fidgets in the west.

An extensive older laterite cover of possible Pliocene age (du preey, undated) is known preserved as low scarp bounded plateau remnants, mainly on interfluves in the western half of the area. Dissect of this older pen peneplain laterite and format of the younger late rite and older alluvium are the result of Pleistocene erosion cycles.

The eastern part of the area is dreamed by the south ward flowing Galma River and its tributaries. The western limit of the Galma catchment basin crosses the map from the middle of the southern boundary to the North West corner.



1.6.3  SOIL

Higher up the slope, the drainage Condition improves and the soils are generally reddish in color, metals are completely absent or a few may occur at great depth, iron concentrations are also not common.

Lower down the slope, the soil gradually become greyer in color while the mottled horizon occurs nearer to the surface. The number of iron concentrations also increase and in some places an iron pan can be seen out roping at lower slops positions. This indicates that iron is not only moved vertically down the profile, but also laterally down the slope.

Locally, in lower slope positions some grey clay soils have been formed. These have a strongly developed coarse blocky structure and may contain calcium carbonate concentrations. The reason why these soils occur here cannot yet be fully explained. They may be influenced by local differences in parent rock or they may have been formed under a previous drier climate.


The re-growth of woody individuals following cultivation is the foundation on which to base a series of communities in the Zaria area. For in the various characters of the plants concerned are to be found the factors for survival.

Many savanna species are able to produce profuse sucker and coppice rowth when the main trunk is cut and because so many of the same species have wide spread horizontal root systems this leads, with constant cutting, to a proliferation of scrub, composed of many small re growths. Associated with this habit is the ability to survive in a suffrutex form for many years. The arid shoots are burnt off or destroyed each year while of the underground root system enlarges and stores food material and water. Relaxation of damage enables the shoots from the crown of the root stock to grow rapidly and establish scrub growth. This growth often has in the early stages much larger leaves and longer inter nodes than is normal for the species.

Many of the seedlings of the trees involved also survive in their early stages in a similar way. An extreme example is that of butyrospermum paradoxum which on germination actually buries the plumage and then survives for many years as a suppressed growth before finally becoming a tree. (Jackson,1969).


The part of Nigeria where Zaria lies is invaded by two distinct air masses, one from the north-dry and continental in origin, the Saharan air mass and the other from over the Atlantic in the south must, cool and equatorial maritime in nature.

The weather depends, to a large extent, on the air mass which covers the area and its depth. These two air masses form a discontinuity zone at their boundary.

The animal rhythm of weather in Zaria follows the annual march of the surface position of  ITD. Statistical averages of weather elements would fail to portray the climatic picture of Zaria. It is rather, the weather sequence in a season and sometimes its extremes which convey a realistic picture of the weather and climate of Zaria.

DRY SEASON – by the middle of November, in most years ITD moves south of Zaria and the dry continental north-easterly or easterly air replaces the moist south westerly air from the surface. ITD oscillates, moving forward and backward, before it finally moves south of Zaria. As a result, the surface air, at times, becomes dry north easterly and the others, humid south westerly with the beginning of the dry season the ‘sticky’ heat of September October is over.

HOT SEASON – ITD starts its northward movement in February and by late March or early April it crosses the latitude of Zaria. At this time there is a thug-of-war between the mE air from the south and the cTs air from the north to take control of the surface around Zaria, so in march and early April the surface winds recorded in Zaria are sometimes south-westerly and sometimes north-easterly. The movement of ITD north of Zaria is marked, firstly by a change in the direction of the surface winds and secondly by a sudden group in the moisture content of the surface air.


Economic activities found in Zaria includes farming (rainfall and irrigation) such as maize, millet, guinea corn, vegetables among others. Other activities include administrative work, banking services, teaching, industries, and animal rearing (such as cattle, sheep, goat and horses).

Among the major industries located in Zaria include the British American Tobacco, Zazzau pharmaceutical industry, Zazzau gunnery mills and other several small scale industries such as bricks and furniture making.

The main types of land are found in the Zaria area: gona or upland fields which support, during the wet season only. Crops of relatively low value per acre such as millet, guinea corn, groundnut, and cotton. And Fadama or low land fields which support, throughout the year, more labor-intensive, higher value per acre crops such as sugar-cone.


The dominant people of Zaria city are Hausa. Others are Nupe, Yoruba, Fulani et cet era. There are Angwans Nupawa, which was established by Nupe immigrants, limanchin Kona, iya populated by Arabs and Kanuri immigrants, Kaura and Amaru from Borno and people from southern Zaria (Kaje, Kurawa, Kaduna among others). (fig 3).

The diversity of ethnic groups made Zaria to grow into what is now generally referred to as cosmopolitan city (Sunday, 2007).


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