Domestic Solid Waste Pollution


and its Impact on Estate Management Practice

in Port Harcourt, Nigeria



By Irene Chinwe Efekalam, PhD

Department of Estate Management
Abia State University

Uturu, Nigeria


Domestic solid waste generation is synonymous with living and the pursuit of a better and improved quality of life by man. Similarly, urbanization is also geared towards improving man’s quality of life however, when urbanization is unplanned, it gives rise to a series of problems thereby indirectly and negatively affecting man’s quality of life. One of such problems stems from the poor management of the ever-increasing domestic solid waste generated by the ever-increasing human population. There is no gainsaying that poor management of domestic solid waste invariably leads to domestic solid waste pollution. Presently, domestic solid waste pollution is considered one of the major pollutions after those arising from black soot and oil exploration activities being experienced by Port Harcourt residents. It has also impacted on various businesses and economic activities. This paper employed the use of e-questionnaires to elicit data from 188 firms practicing Estate Management in Port Harcourt which was further subjected to analysis using one-sample t-test. It was found out that domestic solid waste pollution has an increasing adverse effect on the practice of Estate Management in the City. Recommendations were made in the light of encouraging efficient domestic solid waste management and bettering the lot of Estate Management practices. Areas of possible future research on this topic were also highlighted.

Keywords: Domestic Solid Waste Pollution, Estate Management Practices, Urbanization, Economic Activities, Quality of life

An Overview of Domestic Solid Waste Pollution in Port Harcourt

The definition of domestic solid waste as any substance such as food and drink packaging materials, clothing, paper, furniture, toys, ashes and other waste materials generated in the course of residential living and discarded into the environment because the holder no longer wishes to take responsibility for it will suffice for this paper. This definition is an encompassing one that hinges on definitions given by scholars on this concept in the past. Of particular significance is the definition given by Eionet, 2009 wherein domestic solid waste was defined to encompass wastes from households as well as other wastes, which by their composition, are similar to wastes from households. These wastes are generally regarded as garbage and rubbish originating from residential buildings.

When discarded into the environment, domestic solid waste could either go unnoticed with no striking impacts or noticeable with striking impacts. Domestic solid waste discharged into the environment usually goes unnoticed and of minimal impact in developed climes where adequate measures have been put in place for the collection, transportation, storage, recycling and ultimate discarding – this is regarded as an effective and efficient domestic solid waste management and is aimed at keeping our residential surroundings and by extension, the environment clean and safe from the harmful effects of domestic solid waste. It is perhaps against this backdrop that Gbekor, (2003) described domestic solid waste management as involving the processes of collection, storage, transportation and disposal of domestic solid waste.

Domestic solid waste management is therefore a network of coordinated activities geared towards protecting and safeguarding public health against waste-related hazards and risks. It further helps to maintain a balanced ecosystem through the intentional preservation of the natural environment and its resources and in so doing, preserving the aesthetics of the area. This is not the case in Port Harcourt where domestic solid waste has been known to cause various nuisance and impact adversely on the environment, peoples and businesses. The reason being that domestic solid waste is not efficiently and effectively managed hence has resulted to pollution. In a report on domestic solid waste situation in Lagos and Port Harcourt, Adelegan, (2004) stated that abysmal domestic solid waste problems abound in these cities where streets, open spaces and marketplaces are filled with domestic solid waste materials. It is a common sight in Port Harcourt to observe the indiscriminate accumulation of domestic solid waste in drains, roads, intersections, street corners and open spaces thereby reducing the quality of life and disrupting the operation of other businesses and public services. This according to Adelegan, (2004) describes domestic solid waste pollution.


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How to cite this paper: Efekalam, I.C. (2021). Domestic Solid Waste Pollution and its Impact on Estate Management Practice in Port Harcourt, Nigeria; PM World Journal, Vol. X, Issue VIII, August. Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2021/08/pmwj108-Aug2021-Efekalam-domestic-pollution-impact-on-estate-management-in-port-harcourt.pdf

About the Author

Irene Chinwe Efekalam, PhD

Uturu, Nigeria


Irene Chinwe Efekalam holds a Doctor of Philosophy in Estate Management from Abia State University, Uturu where she also obtained her Masters and Bachelor of Science degrees in Estate Management. She has published several academic works including papers in both national and international journals. Her major research interests are on real estate appraisal and housing development based on which she has presented quite a number of conference papers, the latest being in June, 2021. Irene is a Registered Estate Surveyor and Valuer and a member of the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers and the African Real Estate Society. She currently lectures in the Department of Estate Management, Abia State University, Uturu and can be contacted at irene.efekalam@absu.edu.ng or icefekalam@yahoo.com