Dumps could become stinking time-bombs

Posted on November 1, 2010. Filed under: Waste |

-The Star-

KUALA LUMPUR: It is a long-standing, stinking problem that will not go away. We have yet to find a safe way to dispose of the 19,000 tonnes or so of garbage that Malaysians produce each day.

All our trash now goes to 176 garbage tips all over the country – but only eight are sanitary landfills with pollution control features.

The others are more or less just open dumpsites which stink, pose health hazards, leak polluting liquids into groundwater and rivers, as well as emit combustible gases.

Yet another worry are the 114 closed landfills, almost all of them just open dumps. With no bottom linings to prevent noxious leachate from seeping out or piping system to vent gases, these are ticking time bombs.

With 16 landfills sitting near water intake points or the sea, another potential disaster lurks. We desperately need to clean up the mess.

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