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Taking out the trash

Update: February, 17/2012 - 10:28
Urban environmental staff collect solid waste on a road along the Nhieu Loc Canal in District 3, HCM City. The city discharges between 6,500-7,000 tonnes of solid waste daily. — VNA/VNS Photo Thanh Phan
HCM CITY — HCM City is seeking solutions to deal with an increasing volume of solid waste dumped every day by family households and industrial and medical facilities.

Only 10 per cent of the total 606 businesses operating in the sectors of textiles, footwear, chemicals, food processing, plastics and machinery have modern technology, according to Dao Anh Kiet, director of the city Natural Resources and Environment Department.

That leads to a great deal of solid waste dumped every day and treatment capacity of the city.

"The city has 6,700 tonnes of solid waste dumped in landfills each day. The proportion is quite high and we will attempt to reduce half of the total landfill amount by 2025," Kiet said, speaking at a seminar held yesterday in HCM City.

Kiet said the city would apply the concept of the 3Rs (reduce, reuse, and recycle) to solid-waste treatment, based on the experience of Osaka, Japan.

Last July, the Japanese city signed a co-operation memorandum in the fields of the economy, environmental protection and water management.

"The city has around 250 tonnes of hazardous solid waste that needs to be treated every day. We are trying to recycle, but with obsolete technology, environmental safety cannot be ensured," Kiet said.

Japanese partners said they had run similar projects in Indonesia and Malaysia.

Teruaki Fujikawa of Osaka's Environmental Department said it had recycled waste to be used as environmentally friendly products or to be re-used. It had also set up centres where people could reuse old products.

Osaka also set up systems to generate power from waste.

In HCM City, several projects to produce power from waste have been carried out, but the results were unsatisfactory.

At the seminar, which was held by the HCM City Natural Resources and Environment Department, Osaka Water and Environment Solution Association, and Japanese Global Environment Centre Foundation, HCM City authorities said the situation was urgent because landfills were over capacity. —VNS

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