Economic valuation of improved solid waste management in the Ga East Municipality

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Similar to settlements worldwide, the Ga East municipality faces as one of its main challenges effective solid waste management. This is attributable to the high rates of population growth coupled with lack of the financial resources and institutional capacity to provide needed municipal infrastructure. This study analysed the economic value of an improved solid waste management system in the Ga East municipality based on 150 sampled household respondents, 50 from each community level. Communities in the municipality, based on their life standards, income levels, housing and other facilities, were categorized into three levels in the first stage. Employing the contingent valuation method (CVM) and the logit linear regression model, values for willingness to pay (WTP) were determined. Additionally, factors which influence WTP were identified. The study revealed that most (74%) of the respondents were willing to pay for improved SWM in the Ga East Municipality. It was discovered that the annual mean total willingness to pay for improved Solid Waste Management was GH¢ 595,571.16. Residents’ WTP for improved solid waste management were significantly related to monthly income, educational level and number of years lived in the community. There was an indication that residents desire change in the currently operating waste management system and also a viable business venture for investors. The WTP estimates determined could be used as an essential tool to further estimate taxable revenues by urban planners and administrators to determine the socially optimal charges for solid waste services where all households in a particular community would receive planned and properly scheduled collection services, proper disposal of waste with additional recycling and composting features.
A thesis submitted to the College of Engineering, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, in partial fulfillment of the requirement for the award of a Master of Science (MSc) degree in Environmental Resource Management