Bagmati's rescue

A new dump for proper disposal of Kathmandu's waste

By Rajesh Ghimire
Last Updated: Saturday 04 July 2015

Best out of waste for the vill nepal's Bagmati river has finally got a respite from the onslaught of Kathmandu's waste. It has suffered the menace since the closure of the Gokarna Landfill site in 1999. But now the waste will be dumped at a semi-aerobic disposal site at Sisdole, in the adjoining Nuwakot district. The move involved hectic negotiations with villagers and Maoists, who have a strong presence in the area, reveal sources in the Solid Waste Management and Resource Mobilization Centre (swmrmc), under the ministry of local development.

Welcoming the step, environmental activist Chiranjivi Bhattarai told Down To Earth, "It is a relief for Bagmati and the people connected to it for their livelihood." A crowd of nearly a thousand people gathered near the new landfill when the first convoy of trucks arrived. "Although we are getting solid waste from Kathmandu, people are happy that we are getting a good compensation," explained Rammani Ghimire, president of Okarpauwa Sanitary Landfill Site Main Coordination Committee. The committee will get us$35,388 annually; the amount will be increased subsequently. It will also get some development funds from the two municipalities of Kathmandu valley. "We are here to ensure that the government manages the landfill properly and gives us the compensation in time," said a young student Resam Shrestha.

Crucially, the landfill will not receive hospital waste and hazardous waste from industries. "We don't want to risk the health of the locals as well as the project," says swmrmc general manager Surya Man Shakya. He claims the waste disposal technology used at the site is environment-friendly, cost-effective and simple, suited for small towns as well as metros.

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