China - Innovative Waste Composting Plan for the City of Benxi, People's Rupublic of China

EPA Grant Number: R827933C017
Subproject: this is subproject number 017 , established and managed by the Center Director under grant R825427
(EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).

Center: Urban Waste Management and Research Center (University New Orleans)
Center Director: McManis, Kenneth
Title: China - Innovative Waste Composting Plan for the City of Benxi, People's Rupublic of China
Investigators: Crisp, John N.
Institution: University of New Orleans
EPA Project Officer: Lasat, Mitch
Project Period:    
RFA: Urban Waste Management & Research Center (1998) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Targeted Research


During the 1995-96 fiscal year, UWMRC teams again visited Ecuador, Slovenia and the People's Republic of China. These and other international activities are presented in the following.


During 1995, UWMRC personnel were invited by the People's Republic of China (PRC) to visit several cities in Northern China for the purpose of discussing solid waste management. A cooperative agreement was signed between UWMRC and the Liaoning Environmental Protection Bureau (LPB) which is the regional equivalent of the USEPA. Preliminary proposals for solid waste research were requested by the national, regional, and local governments. As a result of these proposals, UWMRC was invited in 1996 by the national government to visit the PRC to conduct a technical lecture tour and to prepare full proposals for the solid waste projects.

In March 1996, the UWMRC participated in the opening of China's new "Key State Environmental Laboratory" by touring their facilities at Tsinghua University, the Beijing Normal University, and other associated government laboratories in Beijing. Several lectures on UWMRC's research activities were also presented to the faculty and students at Tsinghua University. Particular interest and follow-up requests have been made for more information concerning the Center's activities in the areas of regional solid waste management and the Center's application of TRI and hazard value estimates for pollution prevention efforts.

Innovative Waste Composting Plan for the City of Benxi, People's Republic of China Kenneth McManis, Ph.D., P.E., Professor, W. Reid Lea, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering John N. Crisp, Ph.D., P.E., Dean, College of Engineering

The UWMRC staff who participated in the 1996 trip determined that the cities of the People's Republic of China face the same problems with municipal solid waste (MSW) disposal as other urban, industrialized cities around the world. The leaders of the City of Benxi, Liaoning Province, proposed to UWMRC a project to compost their solid waste as a long-term solution to the problem. In addition to solving the solid waste disposal problem, this could be an innovative solution to the serious problem of air pollution in the city, which is partially the result of fine particulate matter blown off the nearby tailings pile of the Nanfen Open Iron Mine.

The Benxi plan would entail composting of MSW freshly collected from the city and waste material mined from three open dumping areas in the region. Below is a picture of one of these unrestricted dumps. Relative to the quantity of MSW generated, the mine tailings area provides almost unlimited space for commercial-scale composting. Furthermore, local leaders hope to use the compost humus to revegetate the mine tailings, thereby reducing the airborne particulates and improving air quality. Above is a picture of the mine tailings area. In addition to the use of the compost humus as the substrate for revegetation, the plan would also address the potential of vermicomposting, which is the conversion of the biodegradable portion of MSW by earthworm consumption. Worm castings (excrement) could increase the nutrient value of the humus, and the earthworm stock could be a valuable source of protein for livestock. Although the Benxi proposal has many merits, there are also a significant number of problems that must be overcome. Initial investigations suggest that at least the mined waste may be contaminated with industrial pollutants. The chemical and physical properties of the MSW that are important to composting have not been adequately measured. Waste mining and separation will be difficult given the terrain of the disposal sites. The humus produced from composting may not be suitable for production of food crops. Physical and chemical properties of the mine tailings may be an impediment to composting, vermicomposting, and revegetation. Ambient temperature variations and precipitation may make optimal composting and vermicomposting difficult.

UWMRC is working with the officials from the local, regional, and national government to implement the research plan that was jointly developed. The Center hopes to commence the research during the latter half of 1996. Solid waste discussions and preliminary planning have also been conducted with officials of the City of Jinzhua, also in Laioning Province.

Supplemental Keywords:

RFA, Scientific Discipline, Air, Geographic Area, Waste, particulate matter, air toxics, Municipal, Civil/Environmental Engineering, Civil Engineering, Biology, International, Environmental Engineering, Urban and Regional Planning, particulates, composting, air pollutants, China, air pollution, municipal waste, municipal solid waste landfills, solid waste, waste management

Main Center Abstract and Reports:

R825427    Urban Waste Management and Research Center (University New Orleans)

Subprojects under this Center: (EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).
R825427C001 Comprehensive Evaluation of The Dual Trickling Filter Solids Contact Process
R825427C002 Issues Involving the Vertical Expansion of Landfills
R825427C003 Deep Foundations on Brownfields Sites
R825427C004 Ambient Particulate Concentration Model for Traffic Intersections
R825427C005 Effectiveness of Rehabilitation Approaches for I/I Reduction
R825427C006 Urban Solid Waste Management Videos
R825427C007 UWMRC Community Outreach Multimedia Exhibit
R825427C008 Including New Technology into the Investigation of Inappropriate Pollutant Entries into Storm Drainage Systems - A User's Guide
R825427C009 Investigation of Hydraulic Characteristics and Alternative Model Development of Subsurface Flow Constructed Wetlands
R825427C010 Beneficial Use Of Urban Runoff For Wetland Enhancement
R825427C011 Urban Storm and Waste Water Outfall Modeling
R827933C001 Development of a Model Sediment Control Ordinance for Louisiana
R827933C002 Inappropriate Discharge to Stormwater Drainage (Demonstration Project)
R827933C003 Alternate Liner Evaluation Model
R827933C004 LA DNR - DEQ - Regional Waste Management
R827933C005 Landfill Design Specifications
R827933C006 Geosynthetic Clay Liners as Alternative Barrier Systems
R827933C007 Used Tire Monofill
R827933C008 A Comparison of Upflow Anaerobic Sludge Bed (USAB) and the Anaerobic Biofilm Fluidized Bed Reactor (ABFBR) for the Treatment of Municipal Wastewater
R827933C009 Integrated Environmental Management Plan for Shipbuilding Facilities
R827933C010 Nicaragua
R827933C011 Louisiana Environmental Education and Resource Program
R827933C012 Costa Rica - Costa Rican Initiative
R827933C013 Evaluation of Cr(VI) Exposure Assessment in the Shipbuilding Industry
R827933C014 LaTAP, Louisiana Technical Assistance Program: Pollution Prevention for Small Businesses
R827933C015 Louisiana Environmental Leadership Pollution Prevention Program
R827933C016 Inexpensive Non-Toxic Pigment Substitute for Chromium in Primer for Aluminum Sibstrate
R827933C017 China - Innovative Waste Composting Plan for the City of Benxi, People's Rupublic of China
R827933C018 Institutional Control in Brownfields Redevelopment: A Methodology for Community Participation and Sustainability
R827933C019 Physico-Chemical Assessment for Treatment of Storm Water From Impervious Urban Watersheds Typical of the Gulf Coast
R827933C020 Influence of Cyclic Interfacial Redox Conditions on the Structure and Integrity of Clay Liners for Landfills Subject to Variable High Groundwater Conditions in the Gulf Coast Region
R827933C021 Characterizing Moisture Content Within Landfills
R827933C022 Bioreactor Landfill Moisture Management
R827933C023 Urban Water Issues: A Video Series
R827933C024 Water Quality Modeling in Urban Storm Water Systems
R827933C025 The Development of a Web Based Instruction (WBI) Program for the UWMRC User's Guide (Investigation of Inappropriate Pollutant Entries Into Storm Drainage Systems)
R827933C027 Legal Issues of SSO's: Private Property Sources and Non-NPDES Entities
R827933C028 Brownfields Issues: A Video Series
R827933C029 Facultative Landfill Bioreactors (FLB): A Pilot-Scale Study of Waste Stabilization, Landfill Gas Emissions, Leachate Treatment, and Landfill Geotechnical Properties
R827933C030 Advances in Municipal Wastewater Treatment
R827933C031 Design Criteria for Sanitary Sewer System Rehabilitation
R827933C032 Deep Foundations in Brownfield Areas: Continuing Investigation
R827933C033 Gradation-Based Transport, Kinetics, Coagulation, and Flocculation of Urban Watershed Rainfall-Runoff Particulate Matter
R827933C034 Leaching and Stabilization of Solid-Phase Residuals Separated by Storm Water BMPs Capturing Urban Runoff Impacted by Transportation Activities and Infrastructure
R827933C035 Fate of Pathogens in Storm Water Runoff
R87933C020 Influence of Cyclic Interfacial Redox Conditions on the Structure and Integrity of Clay Liners for Landfills Subject to Variable High Groundwater Conditions in the Gulf Coast Region