Exposing the value of waste through urban development
Nairobi, Kenya 11 June 2015– As part of a comprehensive tour of UN-Habitat programmes in Kenya, Ján Ilavský, President of the 25th session of UN-Habitat’s Governing Council, and Sunu M. Soemarno, Chairman of the Committee of Permanent Representatives, visited Kenya’s first semi-aerobic landfill in Kang’oki, Kiambu County during the Governing Council meeting earlier this year.
During the visit, they also met with William Kabogo, Governor of the County of Kiambu, on the status of sustainable and economic development within the County of Kiambu.
The life-cycle of waste from generation up to disposal continues to be a fundamental obstacle for cities as a result of rapid urbanization, increased levels of waste generation, lack of land for waste disposal, and sufficient localized infrastructure.
To actively address some of these challenges, UN-Habitat recently partnered with Fukuoka University in Japan, the Ministry of Land, Housing and Urban Development, the Swedish Government and the County Government of Kiambu to set up the site.
The Fukuoka Method
The high tech waste disposal method, more commonly known as the Fukuoka method, has been successfully adopted throughout Japan and is very transferable due its simplistic design and low costs of operations, management and maintenance.
The Fukuoka method involves consolidating waste through a series of pipes assembled at the bottom of the landfill that due to their perforated structure, guarantee optimum aeration and decrease the release of toxic gases. The pipes also allow leachate to easily discharge from the landfill into a secure retention pond before being transferred to a nearby sewage facility for treatment and release.
Through the initiative, the county has the potential to become the first producer of fertilizer from recycling waste management in the country. Once the construction and piloting of the landfill comes to close in December 2015, Kiambu also hopes to fully transition from its conventional method of incineration and open dumping, to sanitary landfilling, waste reduction, composting and recycling methods.