A Study of Solid Waste Management in Karachi City

Research Article

There is a growing problem of waste management faced by developing countries. Karachi is the biggest city of Pakistan having a population of approximately 24 million. Statistics indicate that on a daily basis, about 12,000 tons of solid waste is generated in Karachi alone, of which forty percent can be found on the city streets. Improper management of solid waste is causing the spread of infectious diseases and environmental pollution. This study examines how the solid waste management process is implemented in Karachi and the challenges faced by the responsible authorities. Solid waste management combines all activities performed in order to keep the city clean on a regular basis and handle waste collection and disposal, sewerages, water treatment, recycling, and health and hygiene issues. This study is qualitative in nature and the mediums of observations and interviews were used to collect data. A total of twenty respondents were interviewed using both structured and unstructured questions. These included residents of selected areas of Karachi as well as municipal officials who are responsible for solid waste management in the city. Results revealed that the citizens are dissatisfied with the current strategies of solid waste management implemented by the municipalities. The public thinks that the municipalities are ill-equipped to handle the developing situation of substantial waste in the city due to which they have to confront many problems. The municipalities, on the other hand, were found to be underfunded and ineffective in the department of solid waste management and therefore, they lack the proper instruments to ensure their efficiency. Residents of Karachi were also a contributing element in the growing waste problem by means of their participation in activities such as illegal dumping and violation of laws. With the ratio of solid waste, increasing per day in the urban center, there is an immediate need to implement major steps to improve the current situation. A more consolidated strategy for solid waste management needs to be designed and implemented which streamlines the processes of waste collection and disposal. Citizens of Karachi also need to be educated on how they can play their part in reducing the quantity of solid waste through the promotion of habits such as recycling.

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