Sisdole landfill’s life 18 mths

KATHMANDU: Sisdole landfill site, the Valley’s only garbage disposal field, will run out of space in 18 months.

Sadly, the government has no plan up the sleeve to manage the problem after the period.

“The site will be full in one-and-a-half years from now but we are yet to work out a long-term plan for sustainable garbage disposal,” said Dr Sumitra Amatya, General Manager, Solid Waste Management and Resource Mobilisation Centre under Ministry of Local Development.

Presenting a paper on the issue of waste management in the capital city on the occasion of the World Environment Day today, Dr Amatya estimated each individual produces 0.4 kg of garbage per day in the valley. The everyday trash collection stands at 360 tons in Kathmandu, 75 tons in Lalitpur, 28 tons in Bhaktapur, 16 tons in Thimi and 13 tons in Kirtipur. Including the adjoining towns, 500 tons of garbage is produced in the valley daily. The solid waste collected by Kathmandu Metropolitan City and Lalitpur Sub-metropolitan City is disposed at Sisdole in Nuwakot’s Okharpauwa. The rest is dumped randomly in public places. The officer pointed at the need of a master plan to dispose of garbage scientifically.

Dr Amatya expressed her concern that garbage dumping was frequently disrupted by Sisdole locals. Since 2005, garbage disposal was disrupted for a total of 205 days in 52 instances, of which municipal staff halted collection for 29 days in 23 instances. Rs 420 million has so far been spent in the Sisdole area, which includes providing facilities to the local communities.

Developing a landfill site at Banchare Danda for a long-term disposal solution has been much talked about. But the project is estimated to cost a whopping Rs 2 billion. Land pooling for the same has been initiated while Japan has been requested to support the project.

Shree Ram Dhungana, a Banchare Danda local, said the law was necessary to address their issue. “Political parties are inciting locals to obstruct garbage disposal,” he added. “The government should bring up plans to develop the area.”

Bidur Mainali, general secretary, Nepal Municipal Association, said it was high time a modern approach on waste management was adopted. “We need to dispose of garbage in a scientific way. It can create employment opportunities by using waste to produce energy and fertilisers,” he said. Mainali pointed at the need of formulating laws to actualise public-private partnership in waste management.