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In this study, solid wastes were collected from 20 Hotels of the 232 registered hotels with the Cross River State Tourism Bureau ranging from 6 to 146 rooms in Calabar. The  hotels rating is  from one (1) star to four (4) stars. Measurements were taken from the sources of wastes generated for eight weeks in December, 201;, August and September 2015 which represented the peak periods for businesses and climatic conditions with a view to determine waste generation rate, bulk density, moisture content and heavy metals/and their compostability. During the study, the average rate of solid waste generation was observed to be 0.262kg/capita/day with a standard deviation of 0.204 and a variance of 0.0414. A negative correlation (R= -0.142) was found between per capita waste generation and number of occupants. The bulk densities ranged from a lower class limit of 53kg/m3 for plastics to an upper class limit of 336kg/m3 for others (i.e refurbishing/renovation, used towels and rugs, sanitary pads, food wrappers, napkins, paints and ink) respectively. However, other bulk densities included 75kg/m3 for paper, 127kg/m3 for metal, 200.47kg/m3 for glass and 262.01kg/m3 for kitchen/food wastes. These bulk densities were all within the acceptable limits of 100kg/m3 to 500kg/m3 for solid waste. It was deduced that the moisture contents ranged from 0.65% to 74.89% for glass and kitchen waste respectively, with plastics having 1.2%, metals 2.10% and other wastes with 22.43%. Heavy metals such as Pb, Cr, Cd, Cu, Ni, and Zn, were assessed for their suitability for composting using the clean index (CI) criteria. A clean index of 3.067 on a scale of 5 was observed, which made it fit for commercial production of organic fertilizers. A statistical analysis of variance – ANOVA, was used to compare the results of bulk densities for hotels, markets and integrated curbsides . A significance of 0.781 and an f value of 0.251 was observed, which implied that there was no significant difference among the various sources of waste that were compared. Recommendations were mad  ,these include; relocation of the Calabar LEMNA landfill site to the outskirts of the city; the solid wastes should be put to use in form of biogas for generation of power supply; there should be a comprehensive environmental legislation that  relates to environmental sanitation offences whereby cases will be tried in industrial courts and punishments given accordingly; and solid waste recycling practices should be encouraged.







Title page ————————————————————————————-                    i

Certificate page —————————————————————————–                    ii

Dedication ———————————————————————————–                     ii

Acknowledgement ————————————————————————-                    iv

Abstract —————————————————————————————                    v

Table of content —————————————————————————–                   vi

List of table ————————————————————————————      viii


Introduction ——————————————————————————-                       1

  • Background of the Study —————————————————– 1
  • Description of Area of Study————————————————— 8
  • Statement of Problem ———————————————————- 10
  • Aims and Objectives of the Study ——————————————– 11
  • Significance of the Study ——————————————————— 11
  • Scope of the Study —————————————————————- 12


2.1       Hotel Study ————————————————————————                     13

2.2       Hotels and Waste —————————————————————–                    16

2.3       Similar reviews on hotel waste ————————————————                  17

2.4       Reviews on effects of land fill location on the environment ————-               18

2.5       Review of literature on recycling  ———————————————                  20

2.6      Reviews on effects of leachate on water ————————————-                 21

2.7       Food waste ————————————————————————–                   27

2.8       Types of wastes        ————————————————————–                   30

2.9       Contamination sources and entry routes ————————————-               35

2.10     Industrial waste ———————————————————————     46

2.11     Solid waste management infrastructure—————————————-  50

2.12     Waste management —————————————————————-                 55

2.13     Types of waste disposal ———————————————————-                 56

2.13.1    Other wastes minimisation processes are ——————————–                  57

2.14      Economic Benefits —————————————————————–     60

2.15     Technologies for Processing, Treatment, and Disposal of Solid Wastes —        60

2.15.1   Landfill———————————————————————————–  60

2.15.2   Composting ————————————————————————–     62

2.15.3  Shredding —————————————————————————–     69

2.15.4   Recovery and Recycling or Waste To Energy ———————————            70

2.15.5   Avoidance/Waste Minimisation ————————————————-  72

2.15.6   Incineration/Combustion ———————————————————- 72

2.15.7   Biogasification ———————————————————————–    75

2.15.8 Anaerobic Digestion and Biomethanation —————————————–         76

2.15.9   Pyrolysis    —————————————————————————-    77

2.15.10   Plasma Gasification —————————————————————   78

2.15.11 Autoclaving ————————————————————————–     78

2.15.12 Chemical Disinfection  ————————————————————–  80


Methodology ———————————————————————-                     81

3.1       Materials and methods ———————————————————                    81

3.2       Oral interviews and questionnaire administration ———————-                   81

3.3       Selection of sample area and validation of testing of questionnaire —               82

3.4       Determination of waste generation ——————————————                  83

3.5       Waste characterization ———————————————————                    83

3.5.1    Moisture content determination ———————————————-                   84

3.5.2    Bulk density determination —————————————————-                   88

3.5.3    Determination of heavy metals by spectrophotometry ——————                90 Lead ———————————————————————————                     90 Chromium ————————————————————————-                     91 Copper ————————————————————————–             92 Determination of cadmium by colorimetric dithizone method —-                     93  Zinc —————————————————————————–              94 Nickel ————————————————————————–                95

3.5.4 Determination of organic matter in putrescible waste —————-                      96

3.5.5 Compostability of heavy metals ———————————————-                       98


Results and Discussion ——————————————————                        99

4.1     Rate of waste generation —————————————————-                       99

4.2       Bulk density ——————————————————————–             110

4.3       Moisture content ————————————————————–                        113

4.4       Heavy metals ——————————————————————              116

4.5       Method of waste handling and storage in hotels ———————–                    118

4.6       Methods of waste treatment in Calabar ———————————-                      120


Conclusion and Recommendation —————————————–                      130

5.1       Conclusion ———————————————————————-             130

5.2       Recommendations ————————————————————                        131

5.2.1    Training of staff and making them part of the plan ——————–                    132

5.2.2    Sharing the plan —————————————————————                        132


APPENDIX 1: List of registered hotel establishment in Calabar


APPENDIX 2: Daily rate of waste generation

APPENDIX 3: Questionnaires for hotel waste in Calabar








In the past, the amount of solid wastes generated by humans were insignificant due to low population density and low levels of societal exploitation of the natural resources. Common solid wastes produced during pre-modern times were mainly ashes and human biodegradable wastes, and these were released back into the ground locally with minimum environmental impact. Tools made out of wood or metal were generally re-used or passed down through the generations (Chadwick, 1842).

However, some generations and civilizations do seem to have been more profligate in their wastes than others. Following the onset of industrialization and the sustained urban growth of large population centres in Nigeria and the world at large, the build up of wastes in several cities caused a rapid deterioration in the level of sanitation and the general quality of urban life. Also, the streets have become chocked-up with filths due to lack of effective solid wastes clearance regulation in some areas. Similarly, Nnaji (2003) noted that the critical and one of the most immediate problems facing developing countries in their cities are the health impact of urban pollution. Increasing solid wastes generation rates due to population growth, changing lifestyles of people, development and consumption of products with materials that are less biodegradable all have increased the burden of municipal solid waste management.

The dramatic increase in solid wastes for disposal led to the creation of the first incineration plants, or as they were then called ’’Destructors’’. In 1874, the first incinerator was built in Nottingham by Manlove, Alliot and co Ltd according to the design of Albert Fryer. Similar municipal systems of solid wastes disposal methods sprang up at the turn of the 20th century in other large cities of Europe and North America .In 1895, New York City became the first U.S city with public-sector garbage management, Lewis (2007). Early garbage removal trucks were simply open-bodied dump trucks pulled by a team of horses which were later made closed-bodied in order to eliminate odours with a dumping lever. These later became motorised in the early 1920’s in Britain. Chadwick (1842). Waste management continued to be a rising challenge as population grew and along with the industrial development of countries, Barles (2005).

Centuries ago, people would   have the trash from their homes transported and dumped in places far from the city. Today, instead of open dumping, usually the trashes are collected, transported to landfills and then buried. Of course, in the past hundred   years, processes have certainly become more sophisticated. Instead of just burying the trashes in landfills, methods like plasma gasification, ocean dumping, incineration and recycling were used Jeni (2011).

Solid waste management has continually generated global concern. Cities spend increasing resources to improve solid wastes management. While the industrialized nations of the world are progressively solving their solid waste management problems, little progress is being recorded in most third world countries and cities Afon (2005). The causes of food wastes are numerous, and occur at the stages of production, processing, retailing and consumption. A very high volume of food is wasted in commercial food production and consumption patterns especially in the case of hotels, restaurants, and eating houses and by caterers for private parties. During festive seasons, there are general tendencies to splurge, over consume and eventually end up wasting more food and consuming less. Viraf (2014) stated that another area of food waste is the retail distribution chains where food products (milk, meat and poultry) that are ready for consumption are wasted when they remained on the shelves or warehousing facilities, beyond their stipulated expiry. Solid wastes generation in any human settlement by the nature of human activities which directly or indirectly produce wastes that could be of agricultural, commercial, industrial and domestic activities. Generation of solid wastes vary in quantity and type from place to place. According to the British Institute of Mechanical Engineers (BIME), as of 2013, half of all foods produced are wasted worldwide. The  loss and wastage occurs at all stages of the food supply chain. In low income countries, most losses occur during production, while in developed countries much food (about 100kg (220 Lb) per person per year) is wasted at the consumption stage. BIME, (2013).

For the hospitality industry, the solid wastes  created by daily operations is an ongoing challenge. In addition to incurring the cost of solid wastes disposal, hotels need to allocate valuable back-of –the house space for solid wastes to be stored and sorted.  There are other concerns as well, namely, the health and safety of those coming in contact with these solid wastes, and the noise created by waste compaction and collection. Much of the solid wastes created in hotels are generated from within the kitchens (organic food wastes, packaging, aluminium cans, glass bottles, and cooking oils), or from the housekeeping department (clearing materials and plastic packaging). Solid wastes are not only created in guest rooms but also in public areas, hotel gardens (pesticides, engine oils, paints and preservatives to grass and hedge trimmings)and offices(toner cartridges, paper and cardboard wastes)and refurbishment and renovation projects undertaken at the hotels contribute further to the solid wastes generated by the property developers (Rohella  et al. 2015).

However, further categorization of hotel solid wastes  and their various sources are as shown  in Tables 1.1 and 1.2


Section Waste
KitchenOrganic food waste, vegetables, bones, meat etc.
House keepingDisposable cans, grocery wrappers etc.
GardensFlower trimmings, weeds, wastes from pruning of  trees
OfficesNewspaper, office paper, envelopes, toilet roll tubes, serviette box, cartridges,
RefurbishmentOld rugs, broken tiles and rubbles,





1Metropolitan Hotel4 stars6
2Country Home Resort4 stars
3Channel  View Hotel4 stars
4Cytaro Hotel4 stars
5Canvilli Hotel4 stars
6Treasure Land Hotel4 stars
7Frankphinas Hotel3 stars7
8Gomays Plaza3 stars
9Royal Bit Hotel3 stars
10Global Dreams Hotel3 stars
11Sweet Dreams Hotel3 stars
12Orange Resort Hotel3 stars
13White Dove Hotel3 stars
14Bowman Hotel2stars5
15Ekunikpa Hotel2stars
16Gracious Homes Hotel2stars
17De Craddle Lodge2stars
18Planet Guest House2stars
19Pheonix Farm & Lodge1star2
20Melisa Lodge1star





PaperMagazine, Newspaper, office paper, envelopes, frozen fish cartons, frozen chicken cartons, toilet roll tube, sugar packet.
GlassDishes, Ceramic, Windows glass, Disposable bottles.
MetalAluminium disposable can beer and soft drinks, tin milk, coffee can juice, tin tomatoes cans, insecticides can, canned kitchen food (e.g Sweet corn, baked beans etc).
PlasticPolystyrene cups, plastic cups, bags, bowl, buckets etc. dishwasher containers.
HazardousBattery, light bulb/tungsten, pesticides, aerosols
Kitchen/foodOrganic food waste (processing), vegetables, food scraps, dead animals.
Garden wasteFlower trimmings, etc. Trees, weeds.
OthersNapkins, towels, food, food wrappers, refurbishing/renovation, foams, sanitary pads. paints and ink


Solid waste generation is closely linked to population, urbanization and affluence. Whichever way one views the mounds of waste, as garbage piles to avoid, or as symbols of a way of life, they are the features more productive of information than any others, (Haury, 1976). Archaeological excavations have yielded thicker cultural layers from periods of prosperity. Correspondingly, modern solid waste-generation rates can be correlated to various indicators of affluence, including gross domestic product (GDP)/capita, energy consumption/capita and private final consumption/capita (Bingemer et al., 1987; Richards, 1989; Rathje et al 1992; Mertins et al., 1999; US EPA, 1999; Nakicenovic et al., 2000; Bogner et al., 2003; OECD, 2004). In developed countries seeking to reduce waste generation, a current goal is to decouple solid waste generation from economic driving forces such as GDP (OECD, 2003; Giegrich et al., 2005; EEA, 2005).

In most developed and developing countries with increasing population, prosperity and urbanization, it remains a major challenge for municipalities to collect, recycle, treat and dispose off the increasing quantities of solid waste and wastewater. A cornerstone of sustainable development is the establishment of affordable, effective and truly sustainable waste management practices in developing countries. It must be further emphasized that multiple public health, safety and environmental co-benefits accrue from effective waste management practices which concurrently reduce Green House Gas (GHG) emissions and improve the quality of life, promote public health, prevent water and soil contamination, conserve natural resources and provide renewable energy benefits. Bingemer et al.  (1987). The major GHG emissions from the waste sector are landfill CH4 and, secondarily, wastewater CH4 and N2O.  Moreover, waste prevention, minimization, material recovery, recycling and re-use represent a growing potential for indirect reduction of GHG emissions through decreased solid waste generation, lower raw material consumption, reduced energy demand and fossil fuel avoidance. Recent studies (Smith et al., 2001; WRAP, 2006) have begun to comprehensively quantify the significant benefits of recycling for indirect reductions of GHG emissions from the waste sector. Post-consumer waste is a significant renewable energy source whose energy value can be exploited through thermal processes (incineration and industrial co-combustion), landfill gas utilization and the use of anaerobic digestion biogas. Waste has an economic advantage in comparison to many biomass resources because it is regularly collected at public expense.


The study was carried out in Calabar located in the South Eastern part of Nigeria. The municipality lies between Latitude 4° 57’ 06’’ N and Longitude 8° 19’ 19’’E. Oko (2010) The city occupied a land area of about 299.10 km2 with a population of 375,196 and an annual growth rate of 3.0% (Eni, 2014). Calabar has a lengthy wet season spanning ten months and a short dry season covering the remaining months. Precipitation is at its highest in the month of September on an average, 300mm of rain is observed. It has a GDP of £2,800 per capita per annum. The Local Government is bordered by Odukpani Local Government area on the north, Bakassi on the South, Akpabuyo on the East and Calabar River on the West. Calabar municipality has ten (10) political wards; Akim, Edim Otop, Ediba,  Big Qua, Diamond, Ikot Ishie, Kasuk, Ikot Ansa, Ikot Effangha and Ikot Omin with a largely urban setting and few Sockets of rural/semi Urban and riverine areas. The people are mostly Christians, having a majority of the populace as civil servants, businessmen and artisans. Though the Local Government Area is indigenous to the Quas, Kasuks and Efiks, It is cosmopolitan in nature with a few sub urban areas like Anantigha, Edibedibe, Mbukpa, Ekpo Abasi in the South and Bacoco, Ekorinim, Amanso village in Kasuk, Etomkpe Abang Asang, Ebedeng, Edim Otop, Nyaha Asang, Ekudusu and Obot Okoho in the municipality which are now among the best residential areas due to the meteoric rise in population and tourist attraction, Oko (2010). A representative map of Calabar metropolis is as shown in Figures 1.1a and 1.1b


Figure 1.1 Map of Calabar metropolis.

Source: Calabar Urban Development Agency (CUDA, 2014)


The management and operation of refuse treatment, collection and disposal system in order to provide adequate economic services for the public consistent with the aims of public health is an exceedingly demanding task. The magnitude and complexity of these problems have simulated a continuous and multi-dimensional search for solution. (Agunwamba, 2001). Calabar is one of the cities in Nigeria that has solid waste management problem due to indiscriminate dumping of refuse in different locations Akpan (2004). (Olaniran et al., 1995) observed that dumping of solid wastes by the road side, in open drains, in open spaces, paper waste in the market, residential area and auto-scraps dumped anywhere and anyhow throughout the urban centre has contributed adversely to the aesthetic sight of Calabar city. Similarly, Sule (2004) observed that indiscriminate dumping of solid waste contributed to atmospheric pollution and further, leachates percolates into the ground thereby polluting ground water quality. Basavanthapa (2008) reported that the situation predisposed people to diseases such as cholera, dysentery, and enteric fevers. Traditionally, the solid waste management industries have been slow to adopt new technologies such as RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) tags, GPS and integrated software packages which can enable  quality solid wastes quantification and collection systems  without the use of estimation or manual data entry . However, the emergence of new solid waste-producing industries have brought about the inability to properly audit the types of wastes, various ways of treatment and handling. Despite the measures or information given by the waste producers themselves with respect to the quality, types and methods of disposal, there seem to be a great difference in actual practice in areas such as;

  1. Identification and description of all waste produced;
  2. Description and evaluation of waste management practice while in the producers possession; and
  3. Identification and assessment of the performance of the contractors.

However, educating the producers is always seen as not efficient as they most often prefer dumping their solid wastes  beside dumpsters or bins  to putting inside directly.


The aim of this study is to quantify and characterize solid wastes from hotels/food activities in the South-South using Calabar Municipality of Cross River as the area of study.

The specific objectives of the study are;

  • Determination of the average rate of solid waste generation for all the registered Hotels in Calabar.
  • Carrying out baseline investigation and assessment of the current situation of storage and treatment methods, recycling and re-use practices in Calabar;
  • Characterization by evaluating the moisture content, bulk density, heavy metal content and compostability of organic/food waste;
  • Designing modern solid waste management facilities; and
  • Make recommendations based on research finding.


The significance of this research is to promote public health by ensuring that the people of Calabar and the world at large are not exposed to health hazards  pathogens resulting from lack of effective solid waste management practices. The findings of this research work will form a reasonable basis for future research on the study area. The study will also help policy makers to enact and enforce specific policies that will protect the rights and well beings of the populace.


Statistically, Calabar city has a total of 234 registered hotels with the Cross River State Tourism Bureau that make up the sources of generated solid waste. This does not account for the total number of hotels in Calabar since there are other unlicensed hotels, but only the 234 hotels are to be studied.

For the purpose of this research, the study is limited to achieving the objectives listed earlier.





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