Nairobi – Kenya is joining forces with Japan to explore ways to implement the recently passed Sustainable Waste Management Bill 2021, to improve the country’s waste management systems.
On Tuesday, Japan and Kenya hosted a waste management symposium where experts presented different strategies that would help Kenya transition from a nuclear to a secular economy.
Experts from Kenya, Japan and the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), among other agencies, also discussed their experiences with waste management and its challenges and sought to understand possible solutions in every cycle of waste management in Kenya, which continues to be a major problem. headaches with increased urbanization and economic growth.
Panelists hailed a new waste management bill passed by the Senate, saying it signaled a new dawn for waste management in the country.
Ayub Macharia, director of environmental education and awareness at the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, said the passage of the bill is an important milestone for the country, noting that it will help fill in the gaps that have made waste management difficult.
Macharia said the bill is timely pointing out that the linear waste management model currently in use has resulted in major challenges including uncontrolled dumping which poses a threat to the environment.
He said the bill is timely, pointing out that the current linear model of waste management has led to major challenges such as unregulated dumping, which poses a threat to the environment.
“The framework law gives us a basis to make benchmarks, in particular thanks to the disclosure by the producers when we finally implemented the law on extended producer responsibility (EPR). Waste service providers are supposed to be happy now because the law says they have to be contracted, which is mandatory. They were not recognized before by law,” he said.
Macharia enlisted the technical support of different partners to help move the bill from policy to the point of implementation.
Richard Kainika, secretary general of the Kenya Association of Waste Recyclers (KAWR), said that to maximize the extraction of value from waste, recyclers need to focus on how to access waste as early as possible.
He pointed out that the main area they need to prioritize is the point of origin where the waste is generated.
“One of the main areas I would say we need to focus on is consumers, once they have done this they need to be educated on how to separate the waste. As recyclers we call for tool splits,” Kainika said.
Kainika further denounced what he called an unfair licensing policy, which he expressed confidence that the new bill will address.
Experts further called for better education of citizens on waste management.
One of the provisions of the bill states that a person who fails to manage waste in accordance with established protocols is committing an offense and will, if convicted, be liable to a fine not exceeding 20,000 shillings or a term of imprisonment not exceeding six months. or both.