Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Environmental Engineering and Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Jeremy M. Slagley, PhD


The United States (US) Department of Defense (DoD) is investigating improved municipal solid waste (MSW) management techniques. Current techniques tax already limited land and energy resources at contingency bases and impart additional logistical support requirements and personnel commitments. Seeking a solution to this growing problem, the DoD is investigating waste-to-energy (WTE) systems to reduce the volume of hazardous and non-hazardous solid wastes while generating low emissions. The current barriers to the acquisition and utilization of viable WTE technologies are the high capital and operating and maintenance (O&M) costs. Using the Life-Cycle Analysis (LCA) software SimaPro, the human health, environmental quality, and climate change impacts of DoD expeditionary waste management practices were compared. These calculated impacts and the economic impacts confirm that the open-air burning of waste is not only dangerous to humans and the environment, but is costly to the US government. Considering the second and third-order economic effects and the mitigated human and environmental health impacts, WTE technologies may be a viable waste management strategy for the DoD.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number