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Analysis of Waste Collection Methods in the City of Tehran and Presentation of an Appropriate Approach

Abstract The system of waste collection is one of the most important stages of urban waste management operation in which most of the expenses are allocated to it. Hence, improvement, optimization and mechanization of the system for collecting and carrying waste can reduce the socio-economic and environmental costs by accelerating the process of these operations.
On the other hand, the operation and efficiency of this area can be increased. Accordingly, waste management in most of the cities around the world tries to improve the mechanization and technology of collecting urban wastes. Waste management of Tehran municipality have undertaken numerous actions in this regard with the aim of strengthening the mechanism of waste collection from the beginning of collecting it from houses or other sources, loading them and carrying it to waste transfer stations or bigger vehicles in the city. Due to the existence of physical structure of the city of Tehran and the method of citizen’s participation, collecting waste is problematic in some of urban regions and neighborhoods. The aim of this study is to investigate and analyze the process and mechanism of collecting waste in the city of Tehran, examine its advantages and disadvantages and identify the effective factors in optimization of this system to improve the quality of methods by presenting appropriate approaches. Findings of the study indicated that despite various actions in terms of management of waste collection by the municipality of Tehran, due to old texture of some urban regions and citizens’ complete participation in recycling, the separation should be done at the source. To solve the current problems, the most desirable methods of collecting wastes and most important activities that should be done in this regard in Tehran have been proposed. Keywords: waste management, the method of waste collection, metropolis of Tehran, urban service management Introduction The population growth and development of residential places have resulted in waste production increasement and creation of environmental problems and its inappropriate management can create many problems (Monavvari, 2005). The necessity of undertaking appropriate management and planning to organize urban wastes is an inevitable issue and urban managers are looking for optimizing solutions to solve the existing problems of urban management including urban waste management (Christain et al., 2003). Despite developments that have occurred in Iran after Islamic Revolution, large expenses is still allocated to collecting and carrying tons of urban wastes. In fact, 70 percent of them in the form of compost and 20 percent by means of modified industries can be recyclable. (Karbasi, 2010). What is evident is that by implementing an appropriate strategy and withdrawing from recycling income, more than 50 percent of collecting and carrying expenses could be saved (ISWA, 1998). According to existing experiences in the country, lack of coordination between responsible organizations, absence of integrated strategy in waste management from production to ejection are among the challenges that should be considered in the strategy of waste management of the country, specifically at the collection stage. The establishment of proper management systems that is applicable to special conditions of each region, specifically in a metropolis like Tehran, not only is effective in reducing environmental pollutions and improving the general health of people, but also brings about social and economic advantages in case of correct planning and presentation of proper approaches. Statement of the problem The issues of waste collection management and urban cleanness have been the concern of many cities and counties. With regard to experiences and studies that have been done concerning this issue, the main reasons seem to have economic, social and cultural roots. These factors often cause problems in implementing the waste development programs (Kardimas, 2006). In recent decades, to overcome this issue, waste management was conducted on the basis of strategic planning and making use of modern technologies and was guided by implementing specific rules and strategies in big cities of the world. From scientific perspective, any action to overcome fundamental problems requires paying attention to infrastructure issues in different economic, social, cultural, urban and environmental dimensions (Amiri, 2002). With respect to increasing population growth, urban development and occurred changes in the structure of Tehran, such factors cause the emergence of required condition to change the attitude in waste collection methods in the last two decades. In general, 80 percent of city’s budget considering cleanliness is allocated to waste collection and carriage and any strategic change and planning to improve it systematically can have desirable effects in reducing the existing problems and increasing the operation of waste executive management (Chobanglos et al., 1991). The necessity of improving waste management and urban cleanness and paying attention to sanitary and environment were put on the agenda of Tehran municipality at the end of 2005 with the aim of mechanizing operation of urban services in different regions. Basically, change in the method of waste collection and stabilization of urban service changes from traditional to mechanization can bring about acceptable accomplishments in terms of economic, environmental, social and cultural issues (Poralaghebandan, 2012). Although changes have occurred in transportation of urban waste and a number of highways are cleaned by special cars, most of the city is being cleaned traditionally. Hence, increase of expenses that is in line with increase in salary of employees and impossibility of detailed analysis of the undertaken operations due to complexity of the structure have caused the continuation of this trend to result in financial limitations as a consequence of urban and urbanization development.
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