Sunday July 27, 2008
Government to manage landfills to arrest pollution
SUNGKAI: The Government will take over management of the country’s 260 landfills in a move to reduce river pollution by leachate from the dumpsites.
Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Seri Ong Ka Chuan said the takeover, expected by September, would be conducted under the Solid Waste and Public Cleansing Management Act 2007.
At present, he said, the management of landfills was not properly carried out and this led to pollution by leachate from dumpsites.
“The current practice is that the councils will dump all collected rubbish at landfills without separating them,” he said yesterday.
“This will lead to leachate, resulting in pollution to nearby rivers.”
Ong assured the people that the takeover of solid waste management would not result in higher assessment rates.
“Everything will still be the same,” he said, adding that the move would not affect the council’s bottom line.
Speaking to reporters after opening SMK Sungkai’s speech day here, Ong said by taking over the landfills, the ministry would bring in experts to treat the leachate from the landfills before discharging it into the rivers.
Ong, who is also Tanjung Malim MP, said the takeover should not be taken as a sign of bad performance by local councils.
“We are just responding to complaints of weaknesses in the disposal of waste management,” he said.
The takeover move involved councils other than those in Selangor and Johor, he said.
Earlier in his speech, Ong advised the students to study hard.
He later presented awards to the school’s 28 students who successfully entered institutes of higher learning.