As part of its effort to strengthen the solid waste disposal programme, the Ministry of Communities has signed a contract totaling $6.5M for hydrogeological and geotechnical investigation at proposed landfills in Region One (Mabaruma and Port Kaituma).
This was revealed on Tuesday at the Ministry’s boardroom, Kingston. The soil testing initiative which will be undertaken by E & A Consultants Ltd, is estimated to be completed in three months.
In brief remarks, Permanent Secretary (PS), Ministry of Communities, Emile Mc Garrel explained that the first stage is soil testing, to ascertain what are the soil parameters. This will be instrumental in the design of the sanitary landfill, and is a requirement by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). He noted that this initiative will also help to protect the groundwater.
“The approach to the sanitation initiative for the Ministry of Communities is not only to address infrastructure work or developing land facilities but importantly given our green development strategies… is to ensure that we have sustainable approaches to sanitation management,” Mc Garrel added.
It was highlighted that soil investigations will also be conducted at various proposed sites including in 14 Miles Bartica, Region Seven, Kara Kara, Linden, Region 10, Bon Success, Lethem, Region Nine, Red and White, Mahdia, Region Eight, Khan’s Hill, Region One, White Creek, Mabaruma, Region Two, Port Kaituma and Onderneeming on the Essequibo Coast.
The dumpsites that are scheduled to be upgraded to landfills are located at Byderabo, Bartica, Rosehall, Lusignan and Haags Bosch.
The sites at Haags Bosch, Lusignan, Rosehall, Bartica and Mabaruma will also have an operation service. Mc Garrel stressed that it is the ministry’s intention to upgrade Haags Bosch to a demonstration site and determine other suitable locations for landfills in Regions Three, Five and Six.
The PS said that conditional approval has been given by the EPA for a proposed site at Khan’s Hill in Mabaruma and Sia/White Creek in Port Kaituma. He explained that it is prudent to have two separate sanitary landfill sites due to the terrain of the region and the areas selected to be used.
It was noted that the ministry is aware of the issues plaguing the sites in Corriverton and New Amsterdam and is investigating new landfill site locations.
There is a proposal for Belleview a possible site in New Amsterdam.
By: Neola Damon