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Volume :37 Issue : 2 2010      Add To Cart                                                                    Download

An initial pilot scale investigation of Al-Jahra waste disposal site using electrical resistivity (ER) surveys

Auther : R. A. Al-FARE*, R. S. Al-JARALLAH*AND Z. ABDULSALA**

*Kuwait University, College of Engineering & Petroleum, P.O.Box: 5969 Safat 13060, Kuwait, E-Mail: r.alfares@ku.edu.kw

** Kuwait University, College of Engineering and Petroleum Testing Center, P.O.Box: 5969 SAFAT 13060, Kuwait, E-Mail: eng.ziad@hotmail.com

ABSTRACT

In recent decades, huge amounts of different types of waste have been produced and deposited in an unplanned manner in dumpsites. Due to such practices, it has become of particular importance to assess the status of both working and closed/decommissioned dumpsites around the globe. An evaluation of the geometric and physical parameters of dumps is significant in order to assess their actual state and facilitate the process of rehabilitation. Due to the scale of the problem, traditional investigation methods via soil sampling are not the most cost-effective and time-efficient way of assessing these dumpsites. An alternative, more promising, non-invasive geophysical investigation is used in this study to assess the dumpsite, to monitor the potential contamination of the surrounding area and to plan the rehabilitation program. In this pilot scale study, a surface geophysical investigation consisting of a four-electrode electrical resistivity survey technique was carried out on Al-Jahra waste disposal site close to Kuwait City. This dumpsite, situated very close to a highly populated area, was decommissioned in April, 2007 after twenty years of service. The dumpsite was reactivated in August of 2007, and is currently receiving construction, household and agricultural waste. This paper presents the preliminary results of the geophysical surveys carried out on the study area. The results indicated a complex structure in the subsurface with high resistivity values extending into greater depths in the NW corner of the study area. The depth at which high electrical resistivity was detected coincided with the excavation depth, according to the dumpsite records held by the local municipality. The findings also indicated the absence of leachate at the excavation depth. Such findings were verified by means of physical field testing. Three boreholes were drilled at the study site for this purpose. The results of this study are essential for decision makers to determine the environmental threat imposed by the current waste management practices in Kuwait.

Keywords: Al-Jahra City; boreholes; dumping site assessment; electrical resistivity; Kuwait waste management.

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