1.1 Background to the Study
The word “waste” is frequent in human existence. That is to say, wherever man is, wastes must be produced as bye-products of his activities. Man’s activities include domestic, agricultural, commercial, institutional i.e. creational and industrial.
According to Adeyemi (2007), wastes are those material generated by man’s activities which are as a reason of misused, underused, overused and have lost their original value and are not wanted again at such setting but can be used to some extend in another setting as a raw material.
According to the World Health Organization Expert Committee (1992), they defined wastes as all the useless unwanted or discarded matter resulting from normal community activities.
Waste can be defined as material that are no longer useful and need discarding or getting rid of (Nath, 2001).
Timaru District (New Zealand) consolidated Bye law (2007) defined Solid wastes as “any material that is primary not a liquid or gases that is unwanted and or unvalued and is discarded by its. Therefore solid wastes means all the abandoned material or unless things that are not liquids or gases resulting from domestic, municipal, agriculture, industrial, and demolition and construction operation which must be properly disposed off in order to avoid harmful effect on health and the environment.
Effect of Improper Solid Waste Disposal on Health
Solid wastes resulting from households (garbage) and from industrial and commercial production constitutes the greatest environmental threat to the urban population.
Solid waste is any solid material which is discarded by its owner, user or producer. Solid waste are left over arising from human, animal or plant activities that are normally discarded as useless and not having any consumer value to the person abandoning them.
Uchebu (1998), classified solid wastes into garbage and rubbish. Garbage being the putrefied wastes from food such as meat, fish, fruits, vegetable while rubbish are non-putricible waste that are either combustible or non-combustible such as paper, carton, wood, clothes, polythene, iron, glasses, ceramic, etc. further still, Nigerian Public Work Association (NPWA), categorized waste into two major groups which are the combustible item such as carton, boxes, paper, grass, combustibles articles such as cans, ashes, metal, furniture, glass, bath tubes, stones etc.
The two broad grouping are, where they are generated. Thus, garbage, putricible wastes is as a result of grouping, handling, preparation, cooking and consumption of food. This type attracts and breeds vermin and emits odours. Rubbish consists of all non-putricible wastes except ashes. Along side this sub-division are street sweepings, bulky waste, ashes, municipal wastes, hospital waste, agricultural wastes, demolition construction waste and industrial waste.
Nelson (2006) defined solid wastes as materials that no longer have any value to the person who is responsible for it and is not intended to be discharged through a pipe.
Effects of these wastes (solid waste) apart from the health implications, improper solid wastes disposal creates as aesthetic nuisance and often lead to environmental degradation and imbalance. It cause concern to public health in the sense that the dumping of waste on lands, indiscriminate disposal of wastes into river and other surface water or into the air can cause pollution and destruction of rivers.
Solid waste if not properly disposed off, and managed can cause problem to public health from the fact that rates, insects, and other vermin that are found at the collection storage points and at disposal sites, carry with them many diseases. These diseases include: fly borne diseases such as typhoid fever, cholera, dysentery, diarrhoea, yaws, onchocerciasis, salmonelosis etc. others are plague, rat bite fever, relapsing fever etc. More so, the emission of obnoxious odour, pollution of lands, water and air can even lead to death. (Oreyomi, 2009).
Research findings indicate, burying controlled, tipping, sanitary landfill, hog feeding, compositing, incineration, and pulverization to be method of proper disposal of solid wastes. Since the improper solid waste disposal and its effect on health in Oron Local Government Urban area is unknown, the researcher deemed it necessary to carry out the study on improper solid wastes disposal and its effects, so as to identify the characteristics of improper solid wastes in this area of the state, verify the relationship between the people’s health and improper solid wastes disposal, determine the method of waste disposal in Oron Urban and finally, identify the appropriate strategies to combat the hazards associated with or posed on the people as a result of improper solid wastes disposal.
Above all, the work will be useful to public health workers and town planners etc. in putting appropriate measures as regards wastes disposal, it will also serve as reviewed paper of another researcher who is in this field of study. The disposal of waste is a very important part of all who engaged in environmental sanitation.
Willie (1996), maintained that it is one of the first health problems which must be tackled in any urban area and the success of health measures may depend to a large extent upon the efficiency with which it is carried out. Solid wastes problem cannot be satisfactorily resolved until all important measures have been taken to ensure the proper disposal of waste.
Effect of Improper Solid Waste Disposal on Health
1.2 Statement of the Problem
In the solid waste management plan of Oron city, the Local Government has identified the rehabilitation of former open dumpsite as one of its priority programmes.
In recent time, Oron has been noted to be one of the slumming area with poor sanitary condition in Akwa Ibom State.
This problem has been on the like due to poor wastes management practices coupled with overpopulation. Open dumping is the common method of waste disposal in most communities. This spelt out the level by which people there are being exposed to the hazardous effects arising from the disposal of solid wastes and the effects of improper management of wastes.
The sources of solid wastes are from municipal, industrial, domestic, agricultural and commercial wastes, in which heaps of solid wastes are among the most pertinent features in communities including Oron Urban.
Thus, after proper examination, it was discovered that open dumping in Oron urban omits offensives odour which attracts flies, breeds mosquitoes and rodents infestation, and when burnt, results in atmospheric pollution. The by-product of these solid wastes are hazardous to health, for instance, when tyres are burnt. Hence, this study therefore sets out to find the effects of improper solid wastes disposal on health in Oron Urban. In other words, what are the defects of improper solid waste disposal in Oron Urban residents?