August 9: The management of biodegradable wastes in Kathmandu Valley is believed to be no longer a pressing problem as garbage management is to begin from mid-August this year.
Identification of a place at Kirtipur in Kathmandu Valley to manage such garbage is likely to offer a viable solution to the valley's pertinent problems. Around 50 ropanis of land has been obtained by the Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC) for garbage management.
Initially, around 40,000 kilograms of recyclable wastes would be collected from eight wards of KMC and those would be turned into manure at this site and then sold at subsidized rate. KMC is also keeping an eye out for other viable sites for this purpose.
The metropolis had been dumping all sort of garbage in Bancharedanda and Sisdol in Nuwakot district for nearly a decade and half. The garbage management faced obstructions time and again during this period. The KMC recently identified Kirtipur's site for sustainable and effective management of wastes, especially the compostable ones.
The KMC decided that it will no longer dump harmful garbage in Bancharedanda.
Nabin Manandhar, spokesperson for the KMC, shared that a team led by KMC mayor Balendra Shah was hunting more prospective sites in and around Chandragiri, Dakshinkali, Nagarjuna, Tarkeshwar and Banepa (outside the valley) to continue the waste management bid.
The sites available so far for garbage management span from 50 ropanis to 150. The KMC team is still looking for more suitable and less expensive land for the same, said Manandhar.
The KMC has already started segregation of biodegradable and non-biodegradable garbage from the source since July 17. The Garbage Management Act-2068 BS has a provision of classification of garbage.
Private Garbage Collectors to be Brought Under the Ambit of Law
Although wastage classification project has been implemented in all 32 wards of the KMC, wastages have been managed by private companies in 23 wards while KMC itself manages wastages in remaining nine major wards.
Locals complained those places where KMC had been managing garbage sees continuation in management while garbage remain to be collected and dumped for nearly two months in those wards managed by private companies.
Dwellers in those wards complained that the private sector was engaged in money-making only rather than delivering service. The irresponsibleness towards the public had led to irregular garbage management in those wards, the locals in those wards said.
The local level administration in those wards have been warning the private companies of action if they do not collect the garbage from the designated places.
Lalitpur metropolis mayor Chiribabu Maharjan pressed an idea of managing waste within the local government where it is produced. "Attention of the federal government is required for this," he said.
The roles and responsibilities, modality of coordination among the federal, province and local governments, framework of joint-investment and the ways of managing household, institutional, industrial, electric and post-disaster wastes should be clearly mentioned in the laws, he added.
Similarly, Chandragiri municipality mayor Ghanshyam Giri said the role of Province Government in waste management should be ensured in the law as per the spirit of federalism.
According to Mayor Giri, level-wise works and responsibilities of the government in production, collection, disposal and the entire management procedures along with their effective implementation should be guaranteed in the new law.
Besides, issues concerning environmental pollution from waste and its negative implications on public health, the responsibilities of three-tier government in waste management, inter-local-level coordination and the utilization of waste as means of economic gains should be the priorities ahead, according to chiefs of other local governments.
Alternative Route to Landfill Site
Process has begun to identify and establish a route to the Bancharedanda landfill site as an alternative to the regular route which gets disrupted by monsoon rains each year, posing challenges to the transport of waste.
The work in this regard has begun in cooperation among the KMC and other 17 local governments in the Kathmandu Valley.
It is said the section from Mudkhukhola to Bancharendanda remains disrupted by rains for several weeks, causing challenges in the waste management. A gravel road at Mudkhukhola serving as an alternative access to Bancharedanda is likely to be upgraded soon and the KMC has allocated Rs two million for this project in the current fiscal year.
A minimum of 200 vehicles transport the garbage managed by the private sector and the KMC daily. Only 150 vehicles are transporting the waste to the dumping site at present due to the ongoing road repair works.
The waste generated in Kathmandu Valley is being dumped at Sisdol of Kakani Rural Municipality in Nuwakot since 2005, although it was meant to be dumped for two years initially.
One thousand two hundred metric tonnes of waste is being managed at Sisdol each day. Out of this amount of waste, Kathmandu metropolis alone contributes the highest amount of 500 metric tonnes.
It is believed that forty per cent of the waste produced in the valley can be managed. Every local level ward is said to be preparing to purchase the materials that can be reused for this purpose.
Experts have suggested segregating the waste into biodegradable and non-degradable at its source itself, reducing the production of waste, using linen or jute bags as an alternative to plastic bag, promotion of 'zero waste' concept and using modern technology in waste management for addressing this perennial problem of managing the solid waste in the Valley. -- RSS