The million tonnes per year (United Nations,

The term solid waste is a broad term
that includes the useless or unwanted solid materials produced from commercial,
residential and industrial activities in a specific area. Solid waste can be
classified according to its origin (industrial, domestic, commercial, construction
and institutional), according to its potential hazard (non-toxic, toxic,
radioactive, infectious, flammable, etc.), as well as according to solid waste
contents (organic material, metal, glass, plastic paper, etc.) (Femi and
Oluwole, 2013)., Improving standards of living, increasing affluence increasing
of population growth rates, together with increasing levels of industrial and commercial
activities in urban areas around the world, are the main causes for a
significant increase in quantities of waste production. More effective disposal
of solid waste is necessary; even in countries that burn or recycle a large
share of their waste and therefore treatment of ashes resulting from burning
solid waste remains an issue (Brockerhoff, 2000; Proske et al., 2005). Improper
solid waste management causes soil, air and water contamination and is often
the result of a lack of financial resources. The problem of municipality solid
waste is very serious in third-world countries, where 80% of the world
population lives and this often relates to a lack of financial resources
(Al-Ansari, 2013). Waste-related diseases are the main cause for the loss of
10% of each person’s productive life. The present day municipal solid waste
(MSW) generated reaches 277 million tonnes per year (United Nations, 2010). Low
and middle-income countries generate (12.2% and 57.1% )of that waste, while
high income countries generate (30.7%) (United Nations, 2010). This figure is
expected to increase to 677 million tonnes in 2025. The percentage of solid waste
generated in high income countries will be (12.7%), while it will be (16.4% and
70.9 %) in middle and low income countries, respectively (United Nations,
2010). Management of MSW involves several processes, including reducing
quantities of waste, reusing, recycling and recovering energy, as well as the
incineration and burial of waste in landfills (Moeinaddini et al., 2010).

The process of a site selection for
landfill is considered to be one of the most difficult tasks related to solid
waste management systems because it is subject to government regulation,
government and municipal funding, increasing population densities, growing
environmental awareness, public health concerns, reduced land availability for
landfills and increasing political and social opposition to the establishment
of landfill sites (Lin and Kao, 1999). Identifying landfill sites is a complex
process where many factors need to be taken into consideration. Examples of
such factors include social and environmental factors, geomorphologic features
and technical parameters. Waste disposal sites must preserve the biophysical
environment and ecology in the surrounding area (Erkut and Moran, 1991; Lober, 1995;
Siddiqui et al., 1996). Economic factors, which include the cost of acquiring
land as well as development and operation costs, must also be considered (Erkut
and Moran, 1991; Yesilnacar and Cetin, 2008). Transport costs, owing to the
distance from waste production centers and distance from main access roads, are
also an important factor (Wang et al., 2009).

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Iraq, an Arab country with a population
exceeding 32 million inhabitants, is experiencing rapid economic growth. This,
together with a growing population, increasing individual incomes and the
instability generated by sectarian conflicts, has led to worsening solid Waste
Management issues. Recurrent wars in Iraq have, also, created a lasting
instability, and as a result, the country has become, isolated and failed to
keep pace with the continuous scientific progress of more developed countries.

Waste Management is considered one of
the most complex issues that Iraq currently faces and there are many problems
affecting the Iraqi waste management sector. Decades of war, sanctions,
instability and mismanagement have all contributed to waste being disposed of
in irregular ways. Population growth has also led to more waste being produced,
which has placed a tremendous strain on the infrastructure for waste handling
(Rashid, 2011).

In 2016, Sulaymaniyah city with 702,882 persons produced 220635 (tonnes) of solid waste with generation
of solid waste 0.86 kg/(capita. day) (Slaymaniyah directory of municipality),
It means that about (60.5) tons waste is daily produced in sulaymaniyah Sulaymaniyah
directory of Municipality. There is an absence of modern, efficient waste
handling and disposal infrastructure as well as a general lack of interest
in/awareness of health and environmental issues. Unfortunately, the hallmarks
of landfill sites in Iraq are groundwater contamination, surface water
pollution, spontaneous fires, large-scale greenhouse-gas emissions and
increasing numbers of insects and rodents in/ around the area (Alnajjar, 2013).

This study uses the concepts of the
geographical information systems (GIS), and a spatial multi-criteria decision
analysis should be used in landfill siting because there are powerful,
integrated tools available to solve the problem of landfill site selection.
Decision makers often use MCDA (Multicriteria decision analysis) to handle
large quantities of complex information. GIS and AHP are powerful integrated
tools used to solve the problem of landfill site selection. AHP is a
multi-criteria decision making approach and was developed by Thomas Saaty in 1980 to unify these
multi-criteria in the process of making decision. This method can be used to
solve complex decision problems and as a tool to support decision making. It
uses a multi-level hierarchical structure of objective criteria and
sub-criteria (Ersoy and Bulut, 2009). GIS plays a significant role in a
landfill siting. GIS allows data to be displayed and managed efficiently from
variety of sources, and it reduces the time and cost in the siting process. GIS
may also be used for identifying routes for transporting waste to transfer
stations and then to a landfill site and vice versa (Kontos et al., 2003;
Delgado et al., 2008; Moeinaddini et al., 2010).

In the literature, several potential
landfill sites have been identified among many candidate sites using GIS and
AHP (e.g. Eskandari et al., 2012; Kara and Doratli, 2012; ?ener et al., 2011;
Uyan, 2014).

The objective of this study is to
select sites for an appropriate landfill area of Sulaymaniyah city by using the
integration of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Multicriteria decision
analysis (MCDA), and also to calculate the required landfill area to cover
generated Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) volume for at least twelve years. So,
using these approaches will lead to integrated environmental management, that
are necessary to allow consideration for all components and processes in
environment; their spatial, temporal, and human dimensions; their interaction
and correlation, coupled with social, economic, political, and legal impacts.

For this purpose, fifteen
input layers including water wells, slope, elevation, rivers, roads,
airport, urban centers, land use, agriculture, villages, military area, archaeological
sites, industrial areas, power lines and soil types were prepared and multi
criteria analysis were implemented with geographical information system.