Establishment of unit generation rates of building debris in Kathmandu Valley, Nepal, after the Gorkha earthquake

Poudel, R.; Hirai, Y.; Asari, M.; Sakai, S. (2018) Journal of Material Cycles and Waste Management, 20(3): 1163-1675

Significant quantities of building waste were generated from collapsed residential and dilapidated buildings as a result of the disastrous Gorkha earthquake in Nepal on April 25, 2015. In this study, in relation to the field damage investigation of the earthquake hit area and based on the building types, different types of building waste produced from each building are estimated and evaluated. An estimation procedure was established to assess the amount of debris resulting from earthquake. In Kathmandu Valley, different types of buildings generated different quantities of building waste per unit area, and the values for these building types ranged from 1.90 to 3.23 ton m−2 in weight and 0.89 to 1.57 m3 m− 2 in volume respectively.
Residential buildings in Nepal generated a larger amount of waste per unit area (ton m−2) than buildings in Japan and China. Waste amounts (excluding that in the foundation) generated by public reinforced concrete buildings in Nepal were similar to the amounts generated by reinforced concrete buildings in Japan and China. Wooden buildings had the highest volume per unit area of building waste in Japan, as compared to those in Nepal and Sri Lanka. These results can be used to estimate the amount of building debris that must be cleared for emergency response after a disaster. This information is vital to predisaster planning to establish disaster management protocols for smooth recovery operations.

Published online on Apr.11, 2018


Gorkha earthquake; Building type; Building waste; Unit generation rate