The evaluation of waste management options

JC Powell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Until recently the disposal option for municipal waste was selected purely on the grounds of financial effectiveness, but now with an increased concern for the environment other criteria such as resource use and environmental impact must also be taken into consideration. The incorporation of a range of different criteria into the decision making process is, however, a formidable task. One potential solution is to use multicriteria evaluation which provides for a systematic appraisal of a number of alternative projects on the basis of a series of criteria. In this study the multicriteria evaluation of six waste disposal options (landfill, incineration and refuse-derived fuel (RDF), each with and without recycling) resulted in RDF with recycling coming out as the best option under a variety of weighting scenarios. Only when a high weighting was put on cost criterion did landfill become the better option. Until recently the disposal option for municipal waste was selected purely on the grounds of financial effectiveness, but now with an increased concern for the environment other criteria such as resource use and environmental impact must also be taken into consideration. The incorporation of a range of different criteria into the decision making process is, however, a formidable task. One potential solution is to use multicriteria evaluation which provides for a systematic appraisal of a number of alternative projects on the basis of a series of criteria. In this study the multicriteria evaluation of six waste disposal options (landfill, incineration and refuse-derived fuel (RDF), each with and without recycling) resulted in RDF with recycling coming out as the best option under a variety of weighting scenarios. Only when a high weighting was put on cost criterion did landfill become the better option.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)515-526
Number of pages12
JournalWaste Management & Research
Volume14
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1996

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