Characterization, generation, and management of household solid waste in Tulsipur, Nepal

Mohan B. Dangi, Michael A. Urynowicz, Shashidhar Belbase

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


Solid waste management in Tulsipur, Nepal has been very rudimentary and disorganized. For 11 years, the city practiced direct discharge of waste on a riverbank followed by the current disposal of waste in a creek with no soil cover or leachate treatment in place. The city's allocation of resources for waste management is also among the lowest in Nepal with 3474 residents per solid waste worker and 14.39 Nepalese Rupees or US $0.19 per person. Tulsipur collects less than one-half of the waste it generates and the waste frequently contaminates water sources. Nearly 100 Tulsipur Municipality households were investigated using cluster sampling techniques in an effort to characterize household solid waste and survey waste management practices. The waste composition study found that household solid waste is made up of 46% organic wastes, 11% dirt and construction debris, 10% plastics, 7% glass, 6% paper and paper products, 5% metals, and 5% rubber and leather. The balance included textiles (1%), hazardous wastes (1%), and other wastes (8%). Tulsipur generates 330.4 g capita-1 day-1 of household solid waste. The waste composition suggests that while organic wastes is still the largest component, recyclable items have emerged in recent years. The significant share of dirt and construction debris uncovered was an indication of urbanization in Tulsipur. Hazardous wastes rates were also higher than other Nepalese municipalities of similar size. It is recommended that Tulsipur adopt composting with a high degree of source separation for organic wastes, promote waste recovery or recycling at the local level to capture valuable items, use dirt and construction debris as a road filling substance and exchange material for new construction. Hazardous wastes also need special care. These practices will ensure that only residual wastes are deposited in landfill.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-72
Number of pages8
JournalHabitat International
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Household solid waste
  • Nepal
  • Solid waste management
  • Tulsipur
  • Waste characterization
  • Waste generation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urban Studies


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