The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) has several targets
towards the achievement of vison 2030. Vison 2030 aims at plummeting the
kingdom’s dependence on oil resources economic diversification, benign public
service development, and moreover, to make the KSA a number one tourism
destination in the world (Thompson, 2017). The main
designation area in the KSA is Makkah city—one of the holiest place in the
world. Makkah city has numerous religious and historical places that
attract millions of people every year; for example, the Grand Mosque, Kaaba,
and the Well of Zamzam. For the last 10 years, the number of believers during
Hajj season average at 2 million (Raj and Bozonelos, 2015). In addition, hundreds of Muslims perform Umrah every day in
Makkah; by 2030—over 35 million worshippers will be coming to Makkah every year
(Al-Hashedi et al., 2013; Munir et al.,
2013).
Amidst achieving this ambitious plan, the KSA will face catch 22, more
people—more Solid Waste (SW) generation.

In 2004, the SW production was at 10.4 million tons in KSA; by
2014, this figure had increased by over 25%. In Makkah city alone, the
generation of solid waste between 2012 and 2015, increased by almost 30% (MEP, 2005; Hoornweg and Bhada,
2012).
Vision 2030 is expected is increase the wealthy of people, standards of living,
and infrastructure development. All these, coupled with the rapid population
growth in the area will lead to continuous increase of solid waste generation.
Makkah city doesn’t have proper SW management method. Currently, all the
produced solid waste in Makkah city is dumped in Kakia open dump site. Being an
open dump site, Kakia possess numerous impacts to the environment; there no
control mechanisms to manage the leachate which contain vast amount of malign
things like heavy & trace metals, pathogens, that can have diverse effect
on human beings (Kulikowska and Klimiuk, 2008;
Kajjumba, Aydin and Guneysu, 2017). Also, the landfill gases are released directly into the
atmosphere—causing global warming.

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????? ????? ((Research aims:

It is very vital to choose a SW disposal site that
will have minimal hazardous effect to the environment. Solid Waste Management (SWM) has four
main pillars; reduction, recycling, recovery, and disposal (Hoornweg and Bhada,
2012). The disposal pillar of SWM encompasses identifying sites that
are complacent with the government regulations, cost effective, and
environmental friendly. The current solid waste dump site of
Makkah city doesn’t meet the standards of SWM system, and the fact that Kakia dump site will be full by 2020, necessitates the finding of
suitable site that will be expended as a SW landfill site for Makkah city.
Therefore, this study summaries parameters that might affect SW site selection
in Makkah city.

?????? ???? ????? (Research
Methodology):

Although landfill site selection is becoming enormously a
complicated procedure, the use of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis methods can
ease landfill selection process. This methods can account for many
contradictory criteria specifics (Eskandari, Homaee and Mahmodi,
2012). By
reviewing the available literature—factors that might influence the selection
of landfill are analyzed and summarized. This review mainly focuses on
environmental and geological parameters.

??????? ????????? (Results
and discussion):

Landfill
technique is the most expended SWM technique applied today in most countries.
In finding a good site for landfill, grievous care must be taken to avoid
environmental jeopardy. Therefore, this segment pays close look to the
geo-environmental circumstances that are key in selecting SW landfill in
Makkah.

1.    
Holy
Places

While carrying out site selection
criteria, the Holy Places should be given the priority. To avoid any sort of
pollution, from the landfill, a buffer zone of greater 10 km should be given to
Makkah city. This buffer radius does not only cover the Grand mosque, but also
all other major holy places like Arafat, Muzdalifa, Mena, and Flags borders of
Holy Area. Therefore, for landfill site selection, a buffer span of 10 km
offers the best protection. 

2.    
Transportation
Network

The landfill should not be close to
the main road, since blown objects from the landfill may distract road users.
However, due to economies of scale, the landfill shouldn’t be far from the
previously present network. The recommended distance between the landfill and
the major roads is 650 m (Babalola and Busu, 2011; Isalou et al., 2013). Therefore,
taking all these into consideration, the optimum sites for landfill are around
Makkah-Madinah road or around Leith road. The site can also be located between
Leith and old Makkah-Jeddah roads, or between old Makkah-Jeddah roads and
Ibrahim Al-Khalil roads.

1.    
Green
Cover

Saudi Arabia is mainly occupied by a
desert. All the green vegetation should be protected from any pollution, since
the KSA has invested a lot in planting such vegetation. The major green
vegetation cover is in North, Northwest, West, Northeast, and East of Makkah (Alqurashi and Kumar, 2014). Consequently,
the most favourable and suitable sites for landfills selection is in the
southwest and south of Makkah city.

2.    
Residential
Areas

The optimum distance of landfill site
from residential and urban areas is 2 km. This distance does not only safeguard
the people from the diverse effect of landfill, but it also provides financial
benefits (Nas
et al., 2010). By zooming into the distribution of
urban areas in Makkah which is influenced by the topography, there is a
remarkable increase in urbanization in the North, Northwest, Southeast and East
of Makkah. The urban growth is oriented towards the north and east directions
with some sporadic extensions in west direction. Therefore, the most
encouraging and suitable sites for landfills of SW are in the Northwest and
Southwest of Makkah city.

3.    
Slope
Criteria

Topography affects the drainage,
water contamination, and capacity of the landfill. Slightly raised topographies
(elevation of 8-12 %) are preferred for landfill construction. The topography
of Makkah lies between 120 m and 1.9 km above the sea level. The study area
rises from the west towards the east and the north forming mountainous
landscape. The west and southwest parts of the study area is a flat with an
average of 98m to 250 m above the sea level. The middle part stands at an
average altitude of 300m (Dawod et al.,
2014). Consequently, northwest or south or
southwest regions of Makkah offer the best alternative for landfill site.

4.    
Rainfall

Although humans don’t have control
over rainfall, locating a landfill in regions that experience heavy downfalls
will be catastrophic. Makkah is in the “rain shadow” with either dry or
semi-dry winds. Thus, apart from winter season (with 50mm of rainfall), the
quantity of rainfall received in the area is low. The regions that experience
more than 60 mm of rainfall are generally not suitable for landfill location (Dawod, Mirza and Al-Ghamdi, 2013). Zooming into
these maps, maximum rainfall was received in the west and southwest regions
(105 mm), while the northwest and southwest regions had the least amount of
downfall (50 mm) (Awadallah, 2012). So, the
north-western and south-western parts of Makkah city off the best odds of
landfill location.

5.    
Groundwater
Wells

Groundwater wells provide the world
with fresh water; thus, a landfill should not be near wells that are used by
people on daily basis; otherwise these water sources will be polluted by
leaching water from the landfill. Analysis of major well in Makkah city like
Zamzam well shows that the water depth is about 35 m. To prevent such water
sources from contamination, the ideal distance should be 10 km (Han et al.,
2014).

6.    
Airports

Flying living things like birds love
to feed at landfill; constructing a landfill near plane filed can therefore be
a problem, since these birds hit the engines of the plane. The closest airport
to Makkah is located 70 km west in Jeddah City (Fadaak and Merdad, 2002). Thus, this
factor may not be considered during landfill selection in Makkah city.

7.    
Natural protected
areas

The Saudi Wildlife Commission (SWC)
is responsible for rehabilitating rare and threatened species. The commission
manages 15 areas. Of these, Mahazet El-Seed (200 km northeast) is the only one
near the Makkah. Since this protected area is more than 15 km away from Makkah
city, this factor is does not affect landfill selection in Makkah. 

8.    
Historical
and Archaeological Sites

These sites are destination for
millions of tourists; therefore, landfill must be far from such sites. Majority
of the historical sites in Makkah are situated west of the central part. For
good results, a buffer radius of 4500 m is always preferred (Nas et al.,
2010). 

9.    
Landform
Stability

Step areas are not suitable for
landfill construction since such areas are not stable. In the western and
south-western parts of Makkah, the landform is stable compared to that in the
eastern and north-eastern parts (Dawod et al.,
2014). Therefore, the western and
south-western parts are better candidates for landfill construction.

10.  Flood Probability

Whenever flooding occurs, the running
water settles in the valleys, so landfills should not be in such places. There
are three main water basins in Makkah city, Numan basin; Ibrahim valley that
extends northeast; Uranah valley which abuts Ibrahim basin in the northeast,
and meet each other in the north and east directions (Subyani, 2011; El Bastawesy et al., 2013). While analyzing
a suitable site for landfill, these wadis must be considered to avoid
pollution—since some of them contain water that is used by pilgrimages.

11.  Land subsidence

When some land experience external or
internal force, it sinks. This characteristic is not appropriate for landfill
since the occurrence of subsidence can cause pollution of the environment. The
presence of soluble rocks like limestone, gypsum, or salt makes the land
susceptible to subsiding. Makkah city shows no sign of these rocks (Al Solami et
al., 2006); therefore, this parameter doesn’t
influence the evaluation of optimum site in the area. 

12.  Geology

While analyzing the geology of the
landscape in relation to landfill, one of the main focus is to analyses the
availability of cover materials like sand. The geology of Makkah city is
governed by Pre-Cambrian (diorite, granodiorite, and quartzdiorite), Tertiary
and Quaternary rocks (gravel, alluvial, tallus, sands, basalt, and sataa rocks)
(Dawod et al.,
2014). Quaternary rocks mainly cover the
biggest western parts of Makkah city. Igneous and sedimentary rocks in Makkah
city are more in the north, central, eastern, and south. The presence of large
deposits of sand in northwest and southwest parts of Makkah city makes it
appropriate to locate solid waste storage facility in those places.

13.  Seismicity in Makkah

Analysis of seismic archives shows
that Makkah city can be categorized as a non-seismic zone (Al-Haddad and et al., 1994). The occurrence
of seismic motions from nearby fault lines can be a disaster to the current
urban development. In the past, Makkah region has experienced numerous
earthquakes ranging from 3-6.9 on Richter scale (Osman, 2012). By retrieving
the literature, major earthquakes in Makkah happened in 859, 1121, 1191, 1269,
1408, 1630 and 1710; with the toughest in 1121 (estimated at 12 on the Mercalli
scale). Seismic measures show that major earthquakes happen in Red sea and move
in the western and southern direction. This place is 150 km away from Makkah
city; therefore, it can be concluded that Makkah is a moderate seismic zone
with less effect on landfill selection.

14.  Meteorological Conditions

The effect of
meteorological conditions strongly affects the landfill site choice. The
presence of these high temperatures facilitates the formation of LFG, which
gases can help to reduce on the operation cost of the landfill (Chen et al.,
2010). The maximum hourly temperatures
surge from 46.5 to 48.7 °C
in Makkah city. The eastern parts of Makkah city have lowest temperatures
compared to western parts. However, all these temperatures ranges favor the
location of landfill (Abdou, 2014). Therefore, using
temperature as a guiding parameter, the landfill can be located anywhere. As
temperature favors the formation of LFG, wind facilitate its transportation to
nearby areas. In the western and southwestern parts of Makkah, wind swings
between southwest and northwest; while in the central zone—wind blows northwest
and southeast. In the east of central area, wind strikes between northwest and
southeast; while south of Makkah city wind direction is overriding in the west
direction (Fadaak and Merdad, 2002). The landfill
should be in direction opposite (in relation to central part) the wind
direction; southwest and northwest offers the best site. 

??????? ((Summary

This paper summaries the factors that might affect landfill
selection in Makkah city. Among these include; holy places, infrastructure
utilities, transportation network, green cover,
residential areas, topographic features, rainfall and other meteorological
conditions, groundwater wells, airports, natural protected areas, historical
and archaeological sites, seismic, landform stability, flood probability, land
subsidence, and geological aspects. Screening through the effects of these
parameters shows that temperature, airport, gazetted areas, and seismic have no
effect on landfill selection in Makkah.

???????? (Recommendations):

From summary
table the most favorable locations for a landfill is in the North, West or
South of Makkah. As the management is looking for optimum location to construct
new landfill by 2020, these results present an insight on the best landfill
locations.