Improving the municipal solid waste collectionthrough an optimized route planning : A study conducted within the municipality of Växjö

University essay from Linnéuniversitetet/Institutionen för ekonomistyrning och logistik (ELO); Linnéuniversitetet/Institutionen för ekonomistyrning och logistik (ELO); Linnéuniversitetet/Institutionen för ekonomistyrning och logistik (ELO); Linnéuniversitetet/Institutionen för

Author: Martin Duru; Sabine Garimé; Moritz Knecht; Esteban Ramirez; [2014]

Keywords: ;

Abstract: Background: Municipal solid waste includes household waste and similar wastecreated by commerce and institutions, which is in this case studycollected by the contractor Ragn-Sells on behalf of the municipality ofVäxjö. Municipal solid waste collection is the process of collectingsuch waste. Route planning is used to optimize the of routes for thecollection of bins. With the help of route planning systems, themunicipal solid waste collection is planned and managed.Problem discussion: Several issues with municipal solid waste collection in Växjömunicipality were identified due to the lack of information regardingthe quantity of waste in the bin collected. This issue leads todifficulties in the route planning causing high unnecessary costs andenvironmental impacts. There are several political and sociodemographicconstraints, which would need to be overcome whenchanging the municipal solid waste collection. Problem discussion: Several issues with municipal solid waste collection in Växjömunicipality were identified due to the lack of information regardingthe quantity of waste in the bin collected. This issue leads todifficulties in the route planning causing high unnecessary costs andenvironmental impacts. There are several political and sociodemographicconstraints, which would need to be overcome whenchanging the municipal solid waste collection. Research questions: RQ1: How can the municipal solid waste collection in Växjö municipality beimproved through an optimized route planning? RQ2: How can Växjö municipality and Ragn-Sells AB reduce theenvironmental impacts of the municipal solid waste collection byoptimizing the route planning? RQ3: How can Växjö municipality reduce their municipal solid wastecollection costs by optimizing the route planning? RQ4: What are the constraints when changing the municipal solid wastecollection in Växjö municipality and how can they be overcome? Method: This thesis represents a case study conducted via a hermeneuticperspective and a deductive approach. Data were collected by personalinterviews, a telephone interview, observations and mailing ofquestionnaires, as well as academic literature procured via research inLinnaeus University’s library. The results of the case study have beenbased upon qualitative information but only few quantitative datacollected from the studied companies. Conclusion: The results of the study show that if Växjö municipality can monitorthe quantity of waste in the bins by the means of modern traceabilitydevices (e.g: sensors), their current route planning system would bemore efficient. Therefore, a new route planning system with sensors forVäxjö municipality is suggested in order to improve their municipalsolid waste collection. As a result of the improvements, themunicipality of Växjö can expect lower costs and environmentalimpacts. Several constraints are refraining the potential changes inVäxjö municipality’s municipal solid waste collection. Nevertheless theconstraints could be overcome, for instance by arguing for the lowercosts and environmental impacts.

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