Municipal solid waste management via mathematical modeling: A case study in Istanbul, Turkey
The prominence of managing municipal solid waste (MSW) in an efficient and effective manner is increasing from day to day. In this paper, the solid waste management (SWM) system of Istanbul is analyzed by applying the techniques from mathematical programming methodology. In this manner, the solutions of the two optimization problems which aim to minimize the total cost and the environmental effects of SWM, respectively, are presented in this study. Additionally, a sensitivity analysis is performed and a multi-objective problem that combines two problems is presented. In this regard, the application of five MSW management technologies which are currently in use in Istanbul on six waste components is analyzed; and the optimal solution regarding the best mixture of these technologies is developed on a given waste composition. Besides, this optimal solution is compared with the current practice in Istanbul; and recommendations are presented about possible future investments for the policymakers. The results of the study emphasize the importance of material recovery and incineration facilities to improve profitability and to minimize environmental side effects. In particular, material recovery facility (MRF) should be expanded to be able to treat all of metal, paper and plastic from a cost management perspective. Incineration (INC) facility should also be expanded in order to treat plastics or organic waste from a Greenhouse Gas (GHG) minimization perspective. In addition to this, landfill appears to be the most prominent treatment technique according to the current problem parameters. However, regarding the waste composition, the amount of organic waste must be decreased by more than 37% for other waste streams to be treated in different facilities other than landfill. Anaerobic digestion and composting facilities need to be more cost-effective for becoming economically feasible. The methodology represented in this study can be extended and generalized to other cities around the world once the correct problem parameters are specified.