Are municipal waste utilities becoming sustainable? A framework to assess and communicate progress
authors Fern?ndez-Bra?a, A; Sousa, V; Dias-Ferreira, C
nationality International
journal ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE AND POLLUTION RESEARCH
author keywords Performance indicators; Progress measurement; Sustainability assessment; Waste management; Municipal waste utilities
keywords MANAGEMENT-SYSTEMS; PACKAGING WASTE; PERFORMANCE; COLLECTION; INDICATORS; WILLINGNESS; MODEL; INDEX; LCA
abstract A framework of indicators to assess the progress towards sustainability of municipal waste management utilities is developed. Its purpose is to fulfil the need for assessing the performance of municipal waste ( MW) management in a simple but comprehensive way-unlike indicators based on individual aspects such as recycling-and including aspects not well considered before, such as waste prevention. The framework is composed of a set of six single indicators, concerning the three dimensions of sustainability: reduction of effectively landfilled MW and reduction of MW generation (environmental component), balance between expenses and revenues and reduction of costs (economic component), accessibility to separate collection and number of complaints (social component). Each indicator consists of an evaluation of the current status of the variable in contrast to a previous situation, with a positive value in case of improvement or negative in case of decline. Then, the values of the individual indicators are combined to obtain a global result. This approach focuses on dynamic progress towards sustainability, complementing the common static indicators. Contrarily to the existing performance indicator schemes, the proposed framework aims at measuring the progress and not the absolute or relative achievement of a waste management utility. The framework was tested on two Portuguese municipalities, proving to be a straightforward application and reliable in guiding stakeholders. Results for the case study showed good performance on economic sustainability, while environmental and social performance were lower due to a lack of strategies for waste prevention and low source separation, affected by poor accessibility to separate collection.
publisher SPRINGER HEIDELBERG
issn 0944-1344
isbn 1614-7499
year published 2019
volume 26
issue 35
beginning page 35305
ending page 35316
digital object identifier (doi) 10.1007/s11356-019-05102-4
web of science category Environmental Sciences
subject category Environmental Sciences & Ecology
unique article identifier WOS:000507276300003
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journal analysis (jcr 2019):
journal impact factor 3.056
5 year journal impact factor 3.306
category normalized journal impact factor percentile 62.83
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