Tuesday Aug 16, 2022
Tuesday Aug 16, 2022

Irregular waste collection: New normal for Kathmandu

For Kathmandu Metropolitan City, obstructions in waste collection have become a routine thing.

2022 Jun 17, 12:40, Kathmandu
People covering their noses while walking aside the waste at Tokha-9, Kathmandu on August 25, 2021. Photo: Prasan Gurung/Nepalnews

It has been weeks since the waste collection was last met in the valley, and now locals are facing numbers of problems all thanks to it.

“It is awful to walk around the repugnant smell. I see garbage everywhere, it feels like I lived amidst a pile of waste. Not only did it ruin my mood and appetite, it disgusted me to a level that some days I could not leave my home,” says a resident of Kathmandu metropolis, Mimamsha Dhungel.

It is evident that the residents of Kathmandu, are left in a state of discomfort by the huge amounts of garbage abandoned for days in the streets. There is a serious and urgent need to shift towards sustainable waste management solutions in Kathmandu.

Trash workers look for recyclables at Bhalswa landfill on the outskirts of New Delhi, India, Wednesday, March 10, 2021. Photo: AP via RSS
Trash workers look for recyclables at Bhalswa landfill on the outskirts of New Delhi, India, Wednesday, March 10, 2021. Photo: AP via RSS

According to the officials of Kathmandu Metropolitan City, sustainable waste management has emerged as a big challenge as landfill site at Banchare Danda has not been completed in its stipulated time frame. Time and again the waste produced by the KMC faces delayed disposal as staff at the landfill site have to manage space for more garbage in the already exhausted landfill site of Sisdol.

The frequent disposal of waste alongside the roads, causes intolerable foul smell and numerous health hazards for the people living and having workplaces in those areas. The concerns of these residents simply cannot be ignored.

“The smell of the waste is difficult to ignore and walk around. The constant piling of waste also invited a lot of mosquitoes in my area, which was extremely problematic as it increased the risk of dengue,” says another resident of Kathmandu metropolis, Aashika Gautam.

In recent times it has become more and more obvious that landfills are not a sustainable place to dispose of all waste produced by the capital city. Stressing it more means there will soon be a need for creating another landfill site. The amount of waste can be substantially reduced through waste segregation at homes and collection sites itself.

“A lot of resources can be gathered from what we throw away considering it to be ‘waste’ material, recycling and waste management are complementary to each other, they should go hand in hand,” says Pankaj Panjiyar, Chief Operation Officer at Doko Recyclers. Yet there is still no formal recycling process conducted by the valley.

“I believe that the government should ban the use of plastic bags again, as for degradable waste a power plant can be constructed which converts such waste to energy. As individuals, it is upon us to contribute to waste management as well. Personally, while I go shopping, I carry a big reusable bag and avoid plastic bags at all costs,” says Kamal Prasad Adhikari, a resident of KMC.


Waste management Obstruction Kathmandu Authorities Progress
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