SUSTAINABLE MANAGEMENT OF MUNICIPAL SOLID WASTE UNDER CHANGING CLIMATE: A CASE STUDY OF KARACHI, PAKISTAN

Salman Khan, Laura Cristina Macias Alvarez, Yan Wei

Abstract


Karachi, the most urbanized and industrialized city in Pakistan, plays a key role in the country’s economy. However, this coastal city is experiencing a constant menace of environmental pollution as well as the absence of an integrated solid waste management system. In spite of the fact that the city has a population of over 20 million producing more than 14,000 tons of municipal solid on a daily basis, an adequate solid management system is entirely nonexistent. Consequently, posing a threat to groundwater and marine life and resulting in the emission of greenhouse gases. The objective of this study is to highlight the current issues pertaining to the municipal solid waste in Karachi and assess the suitability of sophisticated recycling and waste to energy systems. In other words, this research analyzes the potential of generating energy from combustible and putrescible solid waste in a city undergoing a critical power shortage. The results indicate the Karachi has a potential of generating 90 Gg of methane annually through the anaerobic decomposition of biodegradable organic waste. In addition, a well-established recycling sector can generate a revenue of over 20 million US dollars annually while offsetting the city’s GHG emissions.

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