Authorities in Vientiane Capital are trialing the use of electric garbage trucks and will distribute over a thousand waste collection bins in target villages.
The first trial will be conducted in three target villages in the capital, namely Nongbouathong Nuea, Dong Nasok, and Pakthang villages in Sikottabong District, Vientiane Mai newspaper reports.
Head of the Vientiane City Office for Management and Services (VCOMS), Mr. Bounchanh Keosithamma, said last week that authorities purchased four small electric garbage trucks and some 1,535 waste collection bins from China late last month.
The equipment was funded by the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) through the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) for use in Vientiane Capital’s Solid Waste Management, according to Head Bounchanh.
He said that the modern mini garbage trucks include a sophisticated waste collection system capable of compressing trash at three cubic meters.
Over a thousand rubbish bins will be delivered to homes in the three target villages, with two bins per household used to separate rubbish and biodegradable waste for composting.
“After piloting in the three target villages, there are plans to expand to every village, as well as more than 100 schools in the capital,” said Mr. Bounchanh.
“Meanwhile, KOICA plans to assist with a further 20 modern garbage trucks by 2022 to collect waste across Vientiane,” Mr. Bounchanh added.
Green Cities Specialist under GGGI in Laos, Ms. Shomi Kim says the project’s goal is to improve and expand waste collection services in locations where huge garbage trucks are unable to reach.
“The initiative will be the first in Laos to deploy mini electric vehicles while also assisting the Lao government with garbage management,” Ms. Shomi Kim added.
Waste Management a Critical Issue for Expanding Capital City
Waste management has become a critical issue for Vientiane Capital, where only 27 percent of households are able to access waste services.
Households that are unable to or refuse to access waste services engage in illegal burning of waste or dumping waste in forested areas or fields.
Waste consumption in Vientiane Capital is expected to increase to 1.6 million tons by 2030, while the current waste collection system does not allow for waste sorting prior to collection.
Meanwhile, the landfill site in Naphasouk Village, Xaythany District, just 32 kilometers from the city center, caught fire in January, releasing toxic fumes into the atmosphere.
The landfill also caught fire in March 2018 in a similar incident.