Timika initiates urban community-based waste management
The newly established Mimika Sanitation, Spatial Planning and Park Agency (KPT) is initiating a concept on waste management aimed at cleaning garbage strewn along the major roads in the regency capital of Timika.
The urban community waste management system is designed for people living in Timika and the surrounding areas. Sanitation workers will collect garbage door-to-door with trucks every morning beginning at 5 a.m. local time.
In the door-to-door service, residents are involved in handling their household waste.
The sanitation agency will remove the dumpsters placed along the major roads in Timika and in turn provide garbage bins around residential areas to facilitate waste disposal and transportation by sanitary workers.
"The agency will provide permanent dumpsters and motorized garbage carts at neighborhood units and build transit waste dumps on Jl. Hassanuddin before transporting garbage with trucks to the landfill in Iwaka," agency head Nicolaas E. Kuahaty recently told The Jakarta Post in Timika.
Kuahaty, who was appointed last month, said waste management in Timika so far was less effective due to the presence of dumps along the major roads in the city, thus littering the streets with garbage and earning Timika the title of one of Papau's dirtiest cities.
"Visitors to Timika have always criticized my agency for the garbage strewn along major roads."
He added through the public work office, the Mimika regency administration has built nine dump sites across the city, thus turning it into a dirty city.
The regency administration, according to Kuahaty, had taken into consideration the waste management and sanitation issues in Timika and had formed the Mimika KPT in response, which had started its operations in the past month.
The agency was also established to help change the people's habits of dumping waste on the main streets of Timika. It has closed three of the nine dumpsters so far, but still failed to discourage people from dumping garbage on roads.
Many Timika residents are apparently unconcerned with keeping their city clean as they still throw waste along the road to the Moses Kilangin Airport.
"Timika has a bad image of being a dirty city where garbage can be found scattered along the main streets, which triggers air pollution," Kauhaty said.
He added Timika's Pasar Swadaya market was one of the biggest contributors of garbage in the city. The market traders had turned areas around the market into waste dumping sites.
The volume of garbage in Timika amounts at 100 cubic meters daily and the waste disposal method is considered ineffective.
"I'm optimistic we can change Timika residents' habit in dumping waste. Our agency is able to collect garbage door-to-door in residential areas thanks to the available roads to the areas. Waste management in Timika is the responsibility of the Mimika regency administration," he said. Kuahaty has asked for full support from the Mimika administration in providing funds for waste management. So far, the Mimika administration's method of dumping waste at the Iwaka landfill is deemed ineffective and no longer in line with the existing law.
The Mimika KPT is currently seeking a new location for sanitary landfill. The central government has given the authority to the provincial administration so it could start functioning by 2013.
"In the future, organic waste will be turned into compost fertilizer and non-degradable waste would be recycled and used as handicrafts with economic value, such as that in Yogyakarta. Based on my concept, waste will become a blessing for people as well as profit for the regency administration in the future," he added.
Kuahaty said members of the local community would be involved and paid accordingly for cleaning the streets every morning. Tropical flowers will also be grown around the city to turn Timika into a green city.
"The Mimika KPT and other relevant agencies will be involved in supporting the program. Each Timika resident will be provided with a tree seedling to be grown around their homes in an effort to minimize the impact of global warming."