Mbah Robert Achu

Protection of Nature and Sustainable Development, Cameroon

Title: Challenges and problems of plastic waste management in the city of Douala, Cameroon


Mbah Robert Achu completed his MSc in Natural Resources and Environmental Management from the University of Buea in 2010 with 02 papers co-published. Inspector in the Ministry of Environment, Protection of Nature and Sustainable Development, Cameroon since 2011.


A large amount of municipal solid waste that is being generated within the City of Douala from sources such as markets, households, provision stores, supermarkets, drinking spots etc. is left generally unmanaged. The waste collection and disposal company, Société Hygiene et Salubrité du Cameroun (HYSACAM), does not contend with the amount of waste generated per day, as a result, garbage is scattered. These areas produce not only a large quantity of solid waste but also generate different types of waste. Thus requiring different strategies in their proper management, in order to avoid the detrimental effects, it could have on human health and safety and the environment as a whole. This paper presents the challenges and problems associated with managing plastic waste generated by the City of Douala. Several methods were used to conduct this study including questionnaires, interviews, and direct observations. The results of the study shows 1,409,404 tons of municipal waste was collected by HYSACAM in 2017, with 422,821 tons as plastic waste. The study also revealed several shortcomings in connection with the plastic waste management in the City including low-level awareness in waste management processes, poor collection and transportation facilities, open dump site, insufficient collection frequency of solid waste, insufficient plastic waste recycling companies, lack of ready markets for recycled materials and lack of incentives. This study proposes several methods to improve solid waste management starting with the provision of adequate dustbins, facilitate sorting at the source, and also including an increase of collection frequency, increasing public awareness, the involvement of private sector. The logical conclusion is that all the solid waste collected be valorized.