Title: Environmental, socio-economic, and human health impact of illegal waste disposal in Katutura township of Namibia

Authors: Immanuel Zeriapi; Omotayo R. Awofolu

Addresses: Environmental Health Sciences Programme, Department of Health Sciences, Faculty of Health and Applied Sciences, Namibia University of Science and Technology, P. Bag 13388, Windhoek, Namibia ' Environmental Health Sciences Programme, Department of Health Sciences, Faculty of Health and Applied Sciences, Namibia University of Science and Technology, P. Bag 13388, Windhoek, Namibia

Abstract: Inappropriate waste management practices such as illegal disposal of wastes can seriously jeopardise the socio-economic dynamics and well-being of people in communities. This study investigated the impact of illegally disposed solid wastes in Katutura, a densely populated township in Windhoek, Namibia. The research was descriptive, using mixed methods that involved qualitative and quantitative analysis. A total of 234 structured and self-administered questionnaires were received from participants and responses therein were processed and analysed. Findings from the study revealed that illegally disposed wastes are detrimental human and environmental health. This was acknowledged by 51.7% of the respondents. In terms of the impact on quality of life and socio-economic activities in the communities, 80.1% and 53.4% of respondents respectively agree with this assertion. Lower educational attainment (49.1%) as well as nonchalant attitude (38.9%) were found to be responsible for the illegal disposal of wastes by the perpetrators. Respondents however were of the opinion that increase in the frequency of waste collection and introduction of waste recycling initiatives (50.5%) and non-privatisation (73.5%) of the solid waste management processes will curb and eventually solve the problem of illegal disposal of solid wastes in the community.

Keywords: environment; solid wastes; illegal; disposal; unauthorised; human health; communities; Katutura; township; Windhoek; Namibia.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEWM.2022.121210

International Journal of Environment and Waste Management, 2022 Vol.29 No.2, pp.179 - 195

Received: 14 May 2019
Accepted: 07 Jan 2020

Published online: 21 Feb 2022 *

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