What is it about?

Waste to energy concept is one of the best methods, which not only considers the environment but also generates energy from municipal solid waste. The generation of municipal solid wastes at Mekelle city has grown steadily. This is due to the increase of population in urban areas which is caused by the migration of the people from rural areas. The lack of both the awareness and technologies for the utilization of municipal solid waste into valuable assets such as energy conversion, recycling, incineration and decomposing is still a problem to the society of Mekelle city. The objective of this study was to investigate the type and volume of household municipal solid waste and to measure its heat content in order to obtain information about municipal solid waste found at Mekelle city. To achieve this objective questionnaire, field observation, interview, sorting of collected wastes, measurement of calorific value by bomb calorimeter and Dulong‟s formula and measurement of proximate analysis were the instrument employed to collect valid data.

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Why is it important?

The waste generation rate at Mekelle city per capita per day was found to be 0.33 kg/capita/day. With a population of 582,412 at Mekelle city, the annual generation was found to be 71214.43ton/year. The main compositions of the generated waste were sorted and constitutes 71.43% food wastes, 13.59% mixed plastics, 8.80 % cardboards and 1.99% mixed dry leaves. Textile products, mixed paper, diaper and others (shoe, Bones and Mobile card) constitute 1.77%, 1.61%, 0.61%, and 0.19 % respectively. The calorific values obtained from this analysis were 23192.6KJ/kg, 16424.7KJ/kg, 16217.4KJ/kg, 20495.2KJ/kg, 13502.7KJ/kg and 12173.6KJ/kg for plastic products, grass, cardboard, textile (rag), dry leave and paper waste respectively. An average HHV of 17MJ/kg and LHV 13.532MJ/Kg with a moisture content of 6% was obtained and 8.7 MW of power can be generated, while the energy content obtained from the elemental composition of waste using Delong’s formula was 20,454 kJ/kg. Based on the results obtained, the researcher recommended that the calorific value of municipal solid waste found in Mekelle city is feasible for waste to energy technology.


The laboratory work was undertaken at the Messebo cement factory quality control department. This study randomly selected 60 households that are estimated to represent all classes of income levels; low, middle and high and completes on 59 households having 335 people.

Hailu Brhane
Adigrat University

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This page is a summary of: Characterization of Municipal Solid waste’s Potential for Power Generation at Mekelle City as a Waste Minimisation strategy, International Journal of Sustainable Engineering, August 2019, Taylor & Francis, DOI: 10.1080/19397038.2019.1645757.
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