Document Type : CASE STUDY


1 Department of Mechanical Engineering, College of Engineering, Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi, Nigeria

2 Department of Mechanical Engineering, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria


Management of municipal solid wastes (MSW) in most developed societies now involves the use of thermo-chemical conversion methods. This leads to energy and material recovery while also protecting the environment. However, till date most of the wastes generated in Nigeria (including plastic wastes) are either land-filled or openly burnt. These methods are not sustainable and environmentally non-friendly. The reason is that so much space will be needed to accommodate the ever increasing wastes as a result of land-filling and open burning leads to environmental pollution and health challenges. Also, the inherent energy in plastic wastes, as a result of the fact that they have their origins from oil and gas, is not recovered for the benefit of meeting the energy requirements of the populace. Meanwhile there is serious inadequate supply of heat and electricity, the production of which could be improved if the plastic wastes are also applied for electricity and heat generation. This study estimated the amount of energy loss due to the prevailing method of disposal adopted for plastic wastes in terms of quantity of oil and electricity that could have been produced if thermo-chemical approaches were adopted for these wastes. It showed that about 17.3 million barrels of crude oil (worth about $1 billion) and 7.1 million MWh of electricity (capable of powering 4.4 million households) could be produced from the plastic wastes generated in the country. Therefore, plastic wastes should be embraced and treated as a resource rather than “wastes”.

Graphical Abstract

Potential for energy recovery from municipal plastic wastes generated in Nigeria


Main Subjects

NBS, (2017). Demographic Statistics Bulletin. National Bureau of Statistics.


International Journal of Human Capital in Urban Management (IJHCUM) welcomes letters to the editor for the post-publication discussions and corrections which allows debate post publication on its site, through the Letters to Editor. Letters pertaining to manuscript published in IJHCUM should be sent to the editorial office of IJHCUM within three months of either online publication or before printed publication, except for critiques of original research. Following points are to be considering before sending the letters (comments) to the editor.

[1] Letters that include statements of statistics, facts, research, or theories should include appropriate references, although more than three are discouraged.

[2] Letters that are personal attacks on an author rather than thoughtful criticism of the author’s ideas will not be considered for publication.

[3] Letters can be no more than 300 words in length.

[4] Letter writers should include a statement at the beginning of the letter stating that it is being submitted either for publication or not.

[5] Anonymous letters will not be considered.

[6] Letter writers must include their city and state of residence or work.

[7] Letters will be edited for clarity and length.