An Example of Regional Intergovernmental Solid Waste Planning

Date of Graduation

Spring 1995


Master of Science in Geospatial Sciences


Geography, Geology, and Planning

Committee Chair

William Cheek


Ten years ago there were 15,000 landfills in the nation; today there are just over 5,000. Many of these landfills reached capacity well before expectations as a result of national increases in solid waste generation rates. In 1990 every person disposed of approximately 4.35 pounds of trash a day, but by 1993 this number had increased to 4.39 pounds per person. In addition, new federal Sub Title D regulations will make it more difficult to operate sanitary landfills. The closing of landfills due to stricter federal and state regulations as well as landfills reaching capacity prematurely have become a common occurrence across the nation. Cities and counties can no longer simply rely on their landfills to accommodate higher solid waste generation rates and stricter federal guidelines. Solid waste management has become the most pressing concern of public officials and citizens of today. The passage of Senate Bill 530 in 1990 amended Missouri's solid waste laws to encourage regional intergovernmental cooperation and regional solid waste management planning. this law created twenty solid waste regions in Missouri. These regions were to organize into solid waste districts represented by each county and all cities over 500 populations in the region. The districts are responsible for developing a regional solid waste plan to achieve the states mandated 40% reduction of solid waste by 1998. This thesis evaluated how cities and counties approached a statewide mandate to develop a regional solid waste management plan. This thesis utilized one of the twenty solid waste districts created by Senate Bill 530 to explore this research question. That district was the Region D Solid Waste Management District. This district consists of three counties and eight cities in northwest Missouri. The district plan was developed utilizing the middle range planning process. This planning process proved to be beneficial in allowing the district to be tailored by citizens to fit the regions unique environment, demographics, socio-economic, and solid waste conditions.

Subject Categories

Earth Sciences


© Thomas R Hosmer