Composting of Khat and Related Materials as Solid Waste Management Option in Awaday Town

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Addis Ababa University


The huge hip of solid waste has reduced the beauty of the town and became a breeding place of some rodents and vectors. Moreover; the waste encourages some people to dispose more and therefore exacerbates the poor sanitation of the town. The total daily average quantity of solid waste is determined to be approximately 13 tones according to the data obtained for April, 2008 from disposers (i.e. Khat shops or markets) and municipal waste collection department. The waste consists of leaves different plants such as khat, eucalyptus tree, small shrubs and grasses. And since the waste is dumped in an open air it is exposed to the chemical reaction facilitating conditions or factors such as temprature, air and moisture. The process of composting was started by preparing four sites each with 1m3 dimensions at Haramaya town. A track of Khat and related materials waste, which weighs 4 tones, was taken as sample from market center of Awaday. The compostible materials are separate from the waste stream and then shredded to an optimal size. The composing matter is segregate between two groups each with two piles and expose to two different sets of conditions. The piles in the first group are enclosing so as to prevent entry of rodents and exposure to sunlight. The other piles in the second group are left with no enclosure. However, the latter used to be covered with plastic sheets during rainy hours. Moreover, additional conditions and/or factors such as Aeration, moisture, particle size had been maintained and in a pile from each group, manure as facilitator has been used. Besides, temprature measurements have been taken daily till the end. The temperature of the piles was found to pick up to a maximum of 64°c. Then the temperature starts to decline to a daily average of 25°c as the compost in the center of pile is cool or reaches it’s maturity. The analytical results of the Nutrients contents of eight samples of composts taken give values 0.9-1.40 % for nitrogen, 532.00-803.00 ppm for available phosphorus and 6775.72-12445.24 ppm for available potassium. Above all the volume of waste piles have reduced from 1m3 to 0.40 m3 (i.e.60%). x The result of the study indicates that composting has effectively reduced the volume of the waste and can serve as means of removal. Besides, the widely varying nutrients content is significant enough to use the resulting compost as alternative fertilizer.



Chemical Engineering