Coastal Solid Waste Management in Mazandaran Province

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Professor, Department of Environment, University of Tehran,

2 Professor, Department of Environment, University of Tehran

3 Ph.D. Student of Environmental Engineering, Department of Environment,University of Tehran,


Due to the proximity to the sea, beaches always attracted tourists. On the other hand the coastal ecosystems are the most important and sensitive dual nature (land, naval), and variety of animal species are within themselves.
The most important (and also longest) coastal area in Iran are Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman in south with about 2530km long and Caspian Sea in north with about 922km long. Coastal pollution in developing country cause various difficulties for these sensitive ecosystem. For example In Mahashtera Seashore especially in its Mangrove forests different kind of municipal and industrial waste scattered and large area is covered by plastic bags.
Solid waste management in coastal line in the most significant issue in waste management in coastal line is the first and most important factor in maintaining the health of the natural environment.
In recent years, in Istanbul, a waste management system with transfer station, sanitary landfill sites and methane recovery, which led to many developments, have been implemented. It is predicted that potential of renewable energy from landfill sites can be up to 160 Mw over 10 years.
One of the most substantial items in coastal line is the guidelines. It can be said that without enough regulations solid waste management system cannot be performed properly. In this paper the current situation of the waste management in Mazandaran province is assessed and the substantial guidelines for waste management are suggested. Consequently, practical suggestions are offered.
Matherials & Methods
Mazandaran province with 23,756 square kilometers occupies 4/1% of the total area of the country. The total population of the province in 1390 is 3,073,943 people, with one quarter of the total population of the country and tourists in each year which is about 12 million people.
 In order to guidelines and regulation the current status of waste management in coastal line should be reviewed. Thorough examination of the quantity and quality of generated waste at the study area a clear picture of the current situation of waste management and the strengths and weaknesses of existing systems can be evaluated. Therefore, in this study one kilometer radius of the study area along the coastal province were selected and evaluated .The of the latest statistics and information of various organizations such as the recycling of waste management coastal province, municipality and environment department of the coastal towns of the province Mazandaran were collected and investigated. For more accuracy, Fields were visited, several expertise were interviewed and also a survey was conducted. The main structure of proposed guideline was obtained by reviewing guidelines an instruction of waste management system in developed countries. At last comparative studies were done considering current condition of area, and proposed guideline was obtained.
Discussion of Results
Daily waste production in coastal line is 794 ton. Maximum weight is for Babolsar and minimum one is for sorkh rood. Daily per capita waste is about 1/97 kg/d which has a significant deviation with the average per capita (750 kg/d) in Iran which is due to the tourism industry. Degradable material is 77.43 percent, which is relatively high due to the amount of the fresh and non-processed material.  Approximately 22.57% of the total wastes are dry matters that can be used to reduce 20 percent of the total waste using source reduction strategy.
Daily waste collection and disposal is carried out in the coastal line. The results of questionnaires shows that in all cities collecting is done by the municipalities except NOSHAHR which 20 percent of the waste is gathered by private sector and 80 percent of the remaining waste is collected by the municipalities.
In all of these cities waste is recycled and separated by municipalities. In all cities waste separation  by municipalities’ workers have been seen during collection. But it doesn’t mean that all the workers do the waste separation. In addition some homeless persons separate the waste in cities or at disposal sites to find cardboard, paper, glasses or plastics.The results from the questionnaire show that 29 percent of urban waste separation are done at transfer stations and the 71% remaining is done in the landfill. Pets and  plastic waste in all cities are isolated. Paper and metal in 93% and glasses in 87% of cities are isolated.
As it can be seen in the following table1, In most of coastal cities of Mazandaran province waste disposal method is Stockpile and shallow burial, and leachate treatment system is not existed.
Table1:waste dispose situation in coastal cities of Mazandaran(2012)

City Name


Land use
Around the Disposal site

Distance to the nearest City(km)

Disposal Method

leachate Disposal location



Beach, Residential
Beach, Residential
Beach ,Residential
Urban, farming


Stockpile, Burning
Transfer to Amol city
Stockpile, shallow burial
Stockpile, shallow burial
Stockpile, shallow burial
Stockpile, release in a valley
Stockpile, shallow burial
Stockpile, Composting
Stockpile, release in a valley

Caspian Sea
Caspian Sea
Forest and river
Forest and river
Forest and river
leaking to ground
Forest and river

In developed countries, rules and instruction of solid waste management are updated and published regularly but the main problem is in application of these rules. Solid waste management rules covers a wide range of concerns in waste managing. These rules contains necessary criteria for collecting, transporting and dispose as well as burying or incinerating of wastes. These rules also consider design and operation of landfills and incinerators. In addition they have a special focus on minimizing plastic wastes and encourage recycling.
Any rules or guideline  must be based on culture, customs, commercial and economic activity of that society, so it can reach to its final goal which is implantation. Without considering this fact and simply using laws of other countries, will cause various problems or difficulties for the authorities.
With to basic assumption in creating rules or instruction, Sources of pollution can be reduced.
First, all the process must have a comprehensive and coordinated approach that include all parts. It also should consider interacts between soil, water and air. Any effort to protect an environmental section without studying its impact to other parts would be a failure and it would be wrong both scientifically and morally.
Second, although more scientific information is needed, the current lack of information shouldn’t be a setback in start of waste management.
In general, structure of the proposed regulations are as follows:
- Purpose
- Definitions
- Authority management (based on Waste Management Law in Iran)
- Executive Items
 The results showed that the non-practical management of waste in the coastal strip , causes environmental damages in this area. Increase piled waste sites, distribution and poor performance of function elements such as source reduction causes environmental degradation in the region.
The waste of ports, industrial zones and industries located in the coastal cities usually are transferred to disposal area of the near cities. Industrial wastes containing dangerous substances are not separated from other wastes and discharged into municipal landfill. With regard to waste disposal sites adjacent to rivers, forests, sea and high rainy area, considerable amounts of waste and leachate goes to the surface waters and provides extensive water resources contamination.
One of the most substantial items in coastal line is the guidelines. It can be said that without enough regulations solid waste management system cannot be performed properly. In developed countries, waste disposal in open dumping site was usual, until the waste management regulations in these countries were published. Due to the different needs, specific conditions to assess the current status of  coastal area and the experiences of developed countries, waste management instruction in coastal area of mazandaran province  was written to protect the environment from harmful effects of waste accumulation. features and framework of this instruction is illustrated briefly in this article.
Based on the amount of waste produced, urban distribution, lack of extensive road network and topography of the region, four incineration plants are suggested instead of a centralized plant.
Fereidonkenar and Babolsar based on Babolsar, with plant capacity of 200 tons per day; Mahmoudabad, Noor and Royan based on Noor, with plant capacity of 100 tons per day; Noshahr, Chalus, Hachirod and Salmanshahr based on Chalus, with plant capacity of 200 tons per day and Aasabad, Tonekabon, Shyrod, Ktalm and Sadat mahale and Ramsar based on Tonekabon, with plant capacity of 200 tons per day, must be constructed.
It is predicted that future challenges are waste reduction, making an integrated system for waste collection and disposal, using 3r technology, and converting waste to energy.


Main Subjects

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