Municipality To Lengthen Life of City Dump

As trash quickly piles up at the Stung Meanchey dump, Phnom Penh Municipality unveiled plans last week to expand and improve the site so it can be used until 2008, officials said.

“If we do not rearrange and control the site within the next two years, the dump will fill up,” said Junji Anai, team leader for the Japan International Cooperation Agency, which is funding the $310,000 project.

The 6.8-hectare dump, which opened in 1965, receives about 700 tons of trash each day—about 150 tons less than the city generates per day, JICA officials estimated. The uncollected waste is often dumped into rivers or ponds, burned or left uncollected, where it blocks drains and creates unsanitary conditions, they said.

Expanding the Stung Mean­chey dump will buy time for the municipality to construct a new dump in Dangkao district. The city has purchased 11 hec­tares of land there and plans to buy more, Phnom Penh Vice Gover­nor Trac Thai Sieng said Monday.

“The municipality is looking for up to 100 hectares for the new dump site,” Trac Thai Sieng said. “But the first step of the City Hall project is to have 26 hectares.”

Though JICA officials expect the municipality to ask Japan to fund the new dump site, Trac Thai Sieng said the municipality has not made a proposal.

“We need to study a lot of things,” he said. “We don’t yet know the size of our plans, so no estimation of cost is available.”

The municipality also plans to start collecting its own trash in a few years. Under a pilot program sponsored by JICA, the municipality’s Phnom Penh Waste Manage­ment will collect trash in Russei Keo, Meanchey and Dangkao districts beginning in 2007, said Robert Deutsch, a collection officer for JICA. Cintri, the private company that now collects all of Phnom Penh’s trash, will continue collecting trash in the remaining districts, he said.

Cintri officials could not be contacted on Monday.

 

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