The Ministry of Environment – in collaboration with the Preah Sihanouk provincial Department of Education, Youth and Sports – launched compost processing activities at five schools in the province to improve the environment and ensure that school grounds remain green in all seasons.
The project was announced on March 7 at Hun Sen Mittapheap High School in Sihanoukville, with the participation of ministry officials and relevant partners.
The ministry said the benefits of composting are not only related to environmental affairs, but also in changing the mindset of solid waste management separation and storage among students.
“In order for this project to be successful, we encourage the full cooperation of the education department and the leadership of the selected schools. Compost experts from the environment department will be available to offer technical support should it be required,” it said.
Ministry secretary of state Sok Keang, who chaired the meeting that established this programme, hoped the project would be successful and would become a model for implementation in other schools.
According to the ministry, the five schools targeted for inclusion in the programme were selected based on specific criteria – location, size and the amount of waste generated. Rubbish would be sorted by type, and plastic waste reduction programmes would be run concurrently with the compost programme.
Provincial education department director Ouch Sophea told The Post on March 9 that the five secondary schools selected are Hun Sen Mittapheap, Preah Sihanouk, Prey Nop, Stung Hav and Veal Renh.
She said the department – together with the five target schools – were excited to work with the ministry to get the programme off the ground and she could envision the many benefits that will stem from it.
“The process of composting helps the environment because we are turning organic waste into a useful product. The programme will not only help the environment, however. Our students will gain valuable insights into waste management and useful life skills,” she said.
Sophea added that the compost will be used for cultivation of school grounds. If the project is as successful as expected, it would be expanded to other schools across the province, and eventually throughout the country.