MoU signing on waste management project delayed

Kathmandu, November 6

Kathmandu Metropolitan City, a coordination committee representing Investment Board Nepal and private companies today postponed the date for signing a Memorandum of Understanding on Intergrated Solid Waste Management Project, the much-hyped municipal solid waste management project.

Earlier, stakeholders had decided to sign the MoU today. ISWMP is $50 million worth project proposed by IBN to be developed under public-private partnership model employing build-operate-transfer modality to manage waste of Kathmandu valley. IBN and Nepwaste Pvt Ltd, a Finnish joint venture company, had signed the project development agreement in March with the aim ending garbage woes in Kathmandu.

Speaking on issues related ISWMP earlier, Mayor Bidya Sundar Shakya had said KMC did not want to sign any pact before other parties were ready to address key demands put forth by KMC.

“There are about 1,100 employees and equipment worth millions dedicated for waste management in Kathmandu. We want assurance that all employees would be scientifically managed, or else we be compensated,” Shakya had said. There are 150 trucks and other kinds of technical equipment to collect waste from Kathmandu.

However, a source said that vending company was not ready to utilise all of KMC’s resources.

Spokesperson of IBN Uttam Bhakta Wagle said, “The MoU signing was postponed due to some technical problems. We are confident that the MoU signing will occur soon in coming days.”

As per the agreement signed in March, project developer Nepwaste is required to manage formal and informal workers associated with solid waste management in Kathmandu within three months after  signing the PDA.

Similarly, apart from collecting waste from Kathmandu valley, Nepwaste also needs to deposit maximum of 20 per cent of the total collected waste at a sanitary landfill site located at Banchare Danda of Nuwakot and recycle the remaining waste to produce various bio-gas and compost fertilisers.

Banchare Dando spread over an area of 792 ropani is being proposed as the permanent landfill site, which is expected to hold the waste of Kathmandu for a minimum 50 years. It is located 28 kilometres west of Kathmandu valley and around two kilometres from the current landfill site of Sisdol.

KMC officials and waste management experts have been saying that Sisdol is not in a condition to hold the waste of Kathmandu anymore. The Sisdol landfill site was planned to be used as a short-term (two years) landfill site to manage waste from June 2005, and has been overused for more than 12 years since its operation.

Currently, 1,000 metric tonnes of waste is collected from the valley each day.