Following public outcry after waste from construction projects in Sihanoukville was found being dumped directly into the sea, provincial authorities have said four sewage systems are now almost complete.
The construction of sewage systems at four beaches was 80 per cent finished, while two pumping stations were scheduled to be completed by the end of February and two others by mid-March, a report issued by the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction’s National Committee for the Management of the Coastal Zone stated.
The report, signed by secretary of state at the Ministry of Land Management Pen Sophal on 18 February, said sewage stations were being built on Independence, Sokha, O’Sa’at and Ochheuteal beaches.
“The construction of four sewage stations is on schedule and they will be finished on time. The first and second pumping stations will be completed on February 27, with the third and fourth stations scheduled to be completed on March 15,” the report said.
Preah Sihanouk provincial spokesman Or Saroeun said the construction of the concrete sewage systems and the laying of high-density polyethylene pipes in Sihanoukville began on November 27.
During dry season, the four pumping stations would prevent 100 per cent of waste water from getting into the sea, with that dropping to 80 per cent during rainy season, he said.
He added that the construction of the pumping stations faced many challenges due to Sihanoukville’s geography, with the town being located on a hill.
Cheng Srong, provincial director of land management, declined to comment to The Post on Thursday.
A provincial officer late last year admitted weaknesses in waste management, saying the authorities would take action to prevent construction sites dumping their waste directly into the sea.
In a video clip posted online in December, an environmental activist showed one of 29 waste pipes he said were located on Ochheuteal Beach, an area the government has said is one of the most beautiful in the world.
“The authorities and experts cannot completely control the sewage system or create facilities to separate the waste. We are working on this issue.
“We found seven locations which need improving immediately,” Saroeun said at the time.