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Executive Summary Pakse – Solid Waste Management

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The objectives of this report are to:

  1. describe the main features of the solid waste management process in Pakse District today;
  2. identify the most pressing problems of the current system;
  3. formulate a concept design for an enhanced solid waste management system; and
  4. identify, with indicative costing, components of the proposed system which should be included in the Medium-term Urban Environmental Infrastructure Programme (MUEIP).

Solid Waste Management in Pakse District Today

ES2. The current solid waste management system in Pakse is detrimental to the environment and to public health. Only a small portion of solid waste is collected and transported to a dump site. The uncollected waste together with hazardous and hospital waste remains in the urban and rural areas and is burned, indiscriminately dumped or buried. Scavengers separate a notable portion of recyclables under poor working conditions. The entire solid waste management system creates environmental nuisance and pollution of soil, water and air.

ES3. Solid waste collection in Pakse District is the responsibility of the Urban Development and Administration Authority (UDAA). The current service covers fewer than 20% of the population. UDAA is responsible for collection, transport to the dump site about 17km to the north of the city, and the operation at the dump site. Some private companies collect household waste from markets and households and transport it also to the dump site or dump it on private land.

ES4. Uncollected solid waste is burned, buried or disposed of indiscriminately at roadsides, into drains and into vacant areas. As a result of the limited collection coverage by the UDAA some areas of Pakse are served by private solid waste collectors without compliance to any environmental or legal standards.

ES5. Informal recyclers collect and dispose of a significant amount of recyclables (e.g. plastics, glass and paper) but the treatment capacity of the local recycling sector is limited and export to Thailand and Vietnam faces administrative obstacles. The content of bio-waste in the waste is low and there is no composting capacity.

ES6. Infectious hospital wastes amount to under 50 kg per day but are mixed with the household waste and dumped or burned. An incineration plant for hazardous waste is no longer functioning and there is now no mechanism of hazardous waste disposal.

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