Assessment of business opportunities in domestic solid waste management in Eldoret Municipality
Njau, James Mwangi
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With inevitable urbanisation pressure, waste management will continue to be an everyday concern in human civilisation. Although the common observation in most towns is net accumulation of wastes, and subsequent environmental and health implications, waste management can be enterprised as a source of income for the increasing numbers of unemployed youths in Kenya. This project focussed on determining the business and employment opportunities available in domestic solid waste management in Eldoret town. Data were collected from three income groups purposively selected, and the subjects within each strata selected through simple random sampling. The results indicated that business opportunities existed in areas of collection, sorting, compo sting and recycling of domestic solid wastes. To facilitate sorting, households should be provided with specially designed waste bins with four compartments in which one compartment can be used to collect metallic solid wastes, another to collects plastics, another to collect papers and the other for miscellaneous. By virtue of their low initial capital base, the youth as potential entrepreneurs in waste management should be facilitated with credit and other support from relevant authorities like government, civil society and the private sector to engage merchants and other institutions already trading in waste management. There is also need for capacity and competence building among these potential entrepreneurs in all aspects of waste production and management, in line with business requirements. General public awareness on the potential of waste as a source of income is also critical in order to reduce the stigma associated with handling wastes, and the myth that such work is for the low income groups.