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World Bank commits $60 million for five waste management sites

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Preah Sihanouk provincial authorities inspect a waste management facility in Prey Nob district in October last year. PREAH SIHANOUK PROVINCIAL ADMINISTRATION

World Bank commits $60 million for five waste management sites

Several ministries and the World Bank have been studying plans for a project to improve solid and plastic waste management in the towns and districts of five provinces.

The proposed improvements would cost approximately $60 million over six years and would be funded by the World Bank.

Nov Nith, head of the Office of Functions and Resources at the Ministry of Interior’s General Department of Administration, told The Post on February 22 that the project was being studied in order to collect input from all relevant departments with the study-phase scheduled for completion in March, 2022, prior to beginning its implementation.

He said the project would be implemented by the ministries of Interior; Economy and Finance; Public Works and Transport; and Environment in collaboration with the World Bank Technical Team in the targeted locations of Siem Reap town, Battambang town, Kandal province’s Takhmao town, Kampong Speu province’s Chbar Mon town and Preah Sihanouk’s Sihanoukville.

He added that the World Bank was providing funding of $60 million for the project which has been under study since late 2019, but the Covid-19 pandemic slowed its implementation.

After its implementation, it is expected that the five towns will have proper sanitation and landfills built to high technical standards that will reduce environmental impacts and improve public health. Part of the plans include the ability to recycle some of the rubbish into compost.

“Usually, when we dump rubbish into a field or a pit, it will smell foul and affect people’s health and cause wastewater to flow into canals, lakes or groundwater sources. This project will contribute to the protection of the environment because it will prevent that from happening,” he said.

According to a report issued by the interior ministry’s General Department of Administration on February 21, several ministries were cooperating with the World Bank team to hold meetings and discuss the reports from the study and the project documents.

The documents being reviewed include the environmental and social management plans and impact assessment, Siem Reap landfill construction options, policy framework documents to address the impacts of resettlement for any families residing on landfill sites, indigenous peoples planning framework and the employment management policy.

The report said the government’s policy is to manage solid waste and urban development to maintain Cambodia’s beauty and sustainability and its citizens’ wellbeing.

The government is urging the town and district administrations involved in the project to designate direct landfill sites or collaborate on regional landfill sites that can effectively manage waste and meet the technical standards required to attract development resources that can be used to boost government efforts in this sector.

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