Nearly one tonne of used batteries collected in 9 months

More than 900 kilogrammes of used batteries were collected from 45 locations across the country in the first nine months of the year, a senior official at the Ministry of Environment has said.

Pak Sokharavuth, Director General of Department of Environmental Protection, said that the Ministry has installed billboards asking residents across the country to leave the used batteries at the trash cans placed in the 45 locations.

However, Cambodia does not have recycling facilities and landfills for hazardous electrical and electronic waste.

Sokha Ravuth added that the Ministry found nine samples of harmful substances in cosmetic products of which three contained dangerous substances  like mercury, and has disseminated  information on medical waste in 15 provinces.

“We will raise awareness among citizens and consumers about the effects of hazardous substances in waste products, batteries, electrical and electronic equipment by educating communities on the impact of wrong disposal,” he said.

Lack of awareness about collection, transportation, incineration and treatment of medical waste containing hazardous substances are posing a big challenge to the authorities.

He added that to address these issues the ministry is planning to provide waste management services for treatment facilities and waste disposal sites.

Meanwhile, Environment ministry spokesman Neth Pheaktra said that management of solid waste in public places remains a challenge and only 64% of the total garbage is dumped in landfills. The rest of the waste is dumped in public places, including water bodies.

Pheaktra added that by the end of the year, the amount of waste generated in Cambodia will increase by more than four million tonnes per year, while the daily garbage collection will be more than 10,000 tonnes, and the amount of solid waste will increase between 10 and 15 percent per year.

“I would like to call on people to dispose of their solid waste by sorting and packing them properly so that the garbage collectors can handle them easily, ” Pheaktra said.

He also said that the Ministry will seek further cooperation with sub-national authorities in charge of solid waste management to organise landfills properly.



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