The International Solid Waste Association – ISWA, published a comprehensive report completed by SCS Engineers for ISWA under the Climate and Clean Air – CCAC, on reducing Short-Lived Climate Pollutants. A CCAC Solid Waste Emissions Estimation Tool – called SWEET, was used to investigate waste sector emissions of short-lived climate pollutants -termed SLCPs, and other greenhouse gases – GHGs.
Data was collected where multiple waste management scenarios in Tyre Caza, Lebanon. Publications on waste management in Lebanon, including an Integrated Waste Management Plan and Updated Master Plan for the closure and rehabilitation of uncontrolled dumpsites throughout Lebanon, provided data that were used in this study along with updated information provided by Lebanon’s Office of the Minister of State for Administrative Reform.
Different management options for reducing emissions of SLCPs over the short- and medium-term. Comparing emissions reductions achieved by implementing a range of programs over a meaningful time horizon provide greater clarity of vision to see which strategies produce the most climate benefits and are worth a high level of effort and the commitment of resources to achieve.
SWEET is designed to be used by solid waste planning professionals worldwide. It allows some degree of flexibility in selecting key inputs, which gives it greater control and ability to reflect local conditions but adds a level of complexity that may be difficult for some users to navigate. While offering users control of some model assumptions, SWEET includes many calculations and assumptions that are necessarily fixed and can produce unintended results given the model’s limitations. In addition, the assignment of input data that appropriately reflects actual and expected conditions can be challenging, especially when there is a large amount of information to be considered.
The reports on solid waste management in Lebanon and Tyre Caza following the waste management crisis provided multiple sources of data that required evaluation and processing before being used in SWEET.
Click here to read, share, and download the report, ESTIMATION OF WASTE SECTOR GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS IN TYRE CAZA, LEBANON, USING THE SOLID WASTE EMISSIONS ESTIMATION TOOL (SWEET)
ISWA and CCAC will be sponsoring a training workshop on the use of SWEET in the future. For advice and guidance using SWEET contact Alex Stege, SCS Engineers Senior Project Advisor, and Expert on Landfill Gas Modeling.
The International Solid Waste Association (ISWA) has determined that uncontrolled dumpsites hold 40% of the world’s waste and that the world’s 50 biggest dumpsites (identified through a voluntarily survey conducted by D-Waste in 2014) directly affect the daily lives of 64 million people, equivalent to the population of France.
The ISWA reports (2014, 2015a, 2015b, 2016) showcase how eliminating dumpsites is an urgent issue, affecting local, regional, and even global health and the environment. Important findings indicate that 38 out of the 50 biggest dumpsites directly impact marine and coastal areas and can become sources of disease outbreaks and the release of wastes (particularly durable plastics) to waterways and the oceans.
Studies suggest that non-engineered dumps and uncontrolled landfills are the third largest source of global anthropogenic methane, a greenhouse gas about 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide (CO2), accelerating climate change. It is estimated that open dumps emit the equivalent of more than 20 million metric tonnes [tons] of CO2 per year. Without any action, it is projected that existing open dumps will account for 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions by 2025.
If open dumps instead were replaced by engineered landfills with state-of-the-art landfill gas collection and destruction systems, it would be like removing five million cars from the planet.
In 2018, ISWA’s Working Group on Landfill (WGL) developed a Task Force on Closing Dumpsites (TFCD) and presented its dump closure initiative as one of its flagship projects for the future at the United Nations (UN) Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development – Habitat III.
Please read this important ISWA Editorial by James Law and David Ross on this significant issue. The editorial contains a link to the full article available on open access through ISWA’s Journal, Waste Management & Research here.
SCS Engineers brochure – Closing Dumpsites is also available.