One of the most pressing issues facing developing countries is the proper collection and disposal of solid waste. The ASR Group which owns the Belize Sugar Industries is showing a great act as a social partner by handing over two dozen acres of land for the Government to build a transfer station for waste disposal. Love News travelled to Sugar City where the Inter-American Development Bank also committed ten million US dollars for the project’s completion.
Jose Sanchez: “The dump site in Orange Walk is an environmental hazard but the land owner ASR is giving the land to the government with finance from the IDB to transform it into a modern transfer station. All partners gathered this morning for the handing over of the land.”
Dr. Percival Cho CEO Ministry of Environment: “This is a very important event and marks a very proud moment in Belize’s history where public and private entities have come together to collaborate for better waste management and protection of our environment and human health. This gracious act on the part of ASR/BSI in our view goes beyond and above what we term corporate social responsibility. This type of collaboration of course must not go unnoticed and must be commended and encouraged. The Inter American Development Bank funded the first projects of the site and the closing of the Dump Site in other parts of Belize have been a major environmental success.”
Voice 1: “By the end of the first project more than 35,000 households in Belize had access to safe disposal of Solid Waste in sanitary landfill representing 39% of households in Belize. By the way in 2009 it was 0% so we came from 0% in 2009 to 39% in 2015. We want to thank very much the ASR group, the Belize Sugar Industry for donating the land of the Solid Waste Management to the Solid Waste Management Authority in order to close the whole town dumpsite and open a modern transfer station. This is really a great example where both the public and private sector work collectively through a private public partnership.
Jose Sanchez: “The Orange Walk district has the most to gain and Mayor Kevin bernard expresses gratitude.”
Mayor Kevin Bernard: “ The Orange Walk Town Council through the digest of ASR/ BSI has been using this garbage dump on the Pine Ridge Rd. to dispose the Solid Waste gathered from within our town jurisdiction and we have been appreciative as have the people of our town because it has served a critical purpose. I take this opportunity to thank our friends who have not only allowed us use of the lot but have now become stakeholders in an even bigger project.”
Voice 2: “ I would also like to recognize Dr. Cho and Mayor Bernard for again the very easy collaboration for our end that we could make a positive difference here in the community and from my standpoint we talk alot about sustainability in our company. We talk about a lot about environmental compliance and it’s very important for me and I am very proud to be standing here today that we can finally bring this vision here to a reality.”
Jose Sanchez: “ The project will be managed by the Solid Waste Management Authority.”
Dr. Percival Cho CEO Ministry of Environment: “The land has been entrusted to us to execute the Belize Solid Waste Management Project. It is an extension of project one. We are about to close down the open dump site in Orange walk and construct a transfer station that will be serving this community. The transfer station of course, we are going to receive the waste. It’s the same process as the first one, we are going to extract the recyclable materials and then the waste is going to be long hauled from the transfer station in Orange Walk to mile 24 at the Regional Sanitary landfill.”
Dr. Percival Cho CEO Ministry of Environment: “Now the conclusion of this second project, another 6 transfer stations can be constructed. Some of them or a model depicted here to the left and the landfill will of course also be expanded to accommodate this increase in the flow of waste. Municipalities in south and North of the country will have the facilities they need to house and transfer waste in an efficient manner to the sanitary landfill, thereby forgoing the need for individual dumpsites around each municipality. This will have measurable benefits to human health in these municipalities and of course the well being of the environment is of utmost concern for us.
Jose Sanchez Love news.
A sensitization period to inform the public about the project will begin in a month.