GAMBIA: EU funds solid waste pollution control in Kanifing

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GAMBIA: EU funds solid waste pollution control in Kanifing©Kanifing Municipal Council

The European Union (EU) has confirmed $180 million in funding for the implementation of the Kanifing Environmental Transformation Program (KETP), a municipality in The Gambia. The program has a solid waste management component.

The European Union (EU) is supporting solid waste management in the municipality of Kanifing in The Gambia. The organization is approving $180 million in funding for the implementation of the Kanifing Environmental Transformation Program (KETP). The three-year program includes three components dedicated to waste management, education and tree planting, and park management.

In response to soil and water pollution, Kanifing municipality plans to build several community solid waste transfer stations. These facilities serve as an intermediary between the landfill and the collected garbage. To ensure efficient collection, garbage bins will be placed on the streets of this Gambian municipality.

Towards the transformation of the Bakoteh landfill into a transfer center

As part of the KETP program, Kanifing Municipality is working in partnership with Peterborough City Council (PCC) in the United Kingdom and the Opportunity Peterborgh Economic Development Agency.

Currently, waste collected in Kanifing is taken to the unregulated Bakoteh landfill, located near Serekunda, the largest city in The Gambia with an estimated population of 340,000. The dump occupies the site of an old mine. According to Talib Ahmed Bensouda, the mayor of Kanifing, the EU funding will also accelerate the project to transform the Bakoteh dump into a waste transfer center. The facility will store waste that will then be sorted and recycled.

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Since July 2021, the Kanifing Municipal Council (KMC) has been implementing the “Building Climate Resilience through Sustainable Biodegradable Waste Management” project. A portion of Kanifing’s organic waste will be used to make biomass briquettes. This fuel will be used by households instead of wood for cooking. This will contribute to the compensation of deforestation. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the Gambia lost nearly 100,000 hectares of forest between 1998 and 2008. This situation has been worsening over the years. As part of the Kanifing Environmental Transformation Program, the authorities will also plant trees throughout the municipality.

Inès Magoum

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