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Landfill to introduce recycling in six months

The New Providence Ecology Park (NPEP) will introduce its recycling program on New Providence in the next six months, Waste Resources Development Group (WRDG) Chairman Henry Dean said yesterday.

The government signed an agreement with NPEP, which comprises WRDG and Providence Advisors, for a $45 million multi-phased redevelopment of the New Providence Landfill.

NPEP took over operation of the landfill two weeks ago, Dean said.

“In about six months’ time, we are going to roll out our recycling program, and this is where sorting at home helps,” he said during a Rotary Club of West Nassau meeting.

“What we had to do at this point, or when we begin to recycle, is we had to have persons to, for the most part, get in the trenches and create separation.

“Machinery will help us to some extent. That machine is not easily acquired because we have to have it designed to suit our environment, to suit our size and our land mass.

“But we are going to begin the process, where we physically seek to separate the cardboards, the plastic, the paper and the cans.

“We have limited usage for those. We have to hopefully generate enough, stockpile it until we get a trailer load, and export it.

“That in itself may not be so profitable for us, but it is an exercise that must be undertaken as we seek to help keep the environment clean, and reduce the space at the landfill.”

Dean said that Bahamians should not expect a waste-to-energy program for another five years, as the government is not ready for it.

“That should come in maybe about five years, and then we too will look at how we can work this garbage into fuel, natural gas, diesel and the likes,” he said.

NPEP Chairman Kenwood Kerr said at last month’s signing that the landfill will be converted into “a purposefully engineered landfill and material recovery facility” featuring a park.

The deal followed years of challenges at the landfill.

Addressing longstanding problems at the landfill was a key campaign pledge of the Free National Movement. The backdrop was a fire that burned for three weeks in 2017, blanketing the area with smoke. At one point, several neighboring homes were put at risk from the raging fire.

Highlighting the danger of such events in its June 2017 report, the Pan American Health Organization classified the landfill as an “urgent public health hazard”, which presents a “chronic health risk” to those living and operating in and around the landfill.

Rachel Knowles

Staff Reporter at The Nassau Guardian
Rachel joined The Nassau Guardian in January 2019. Rachel covers national issues.
Education: Virginia in Charlottesville, BA in Foreign Affairs and Spanish

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