KUCHING, June 27: An average of about 100-200 tonnes of bulky and mixed waste such as old furniture, carton boxes, plastics, discarded food, scrap tyres, old appliances, construction debris, garden waste and others are being dumped illegally near residential and commercial areas under the Padawan Municipal Council (MPP)’s jurisdiction annually.
The council and Trienekens (Sarawak) Sdn Bhd are reminding the public to stop dumping their waste illegally at random and obscure locations as the irresponsible act does not only put public health at risk but it is also expensive and laborious to clear.
According to MPP chairman Lo Khere Chiang, the issue is getting serious and difficult to eradicate without the public’s cooperation.
The problem is exceptionally ‘chronic’ at Jalan Kangkok, Kuching City Mall, the access road to Kompleks Perumahan Awam Kementerian Pertahanan Malaysia Cawangan Sarawak (6th Mile, off Jalan Penrissen), Jalan Ensing Timur and Kampung Tengah Sungai of Jalan Segubang/Sejijak.
“The clearing process takes time, energy and money. Last year alone, we spent about RM97,000 on clearing illegal dumping spots as we needed to bring in the machinery, backhoes, lorries, labour and so on. The council has spent a lot of unnecessary resources to eradicate the problem when they can be better used to improve other public facilities such as drainage or road improvements,” said Lo in a statement issued here yesterday.
Lo stressed that cleanliness is a shared responsibility and the public should take ownership of their rubbish and practise disposing their waste more responsibly by using their household bins or available bin centres.
“Anyone witnessing any act of illegal dumping in their housing area can also assist the Council by reporting such incidences immediately,” he said.
Meanwhile, Trienekens’ Division Head for Logistics and Services, Lee Ghee Seng said the company will continue to work with the local councils to create awareness about the dangers of illegal dumping.
“It may seem like an easy and convenient thing to do but the long-term impact on the environment and human health are harmful. If the public have excessive or bulky wastes to dispose of, the waste can be disposed of at the nearest designated bin centres. For those who have renovation waste, larger size containers such as the RoRo containers are also available for rent. This way, waste can be disposed of in a cleaner and safer manner,” explained Lee.
Illegal dumping is an offence under the Natural Resources Environment Board Ordinance and punishable by law. Under Section 30 (1) (a & b), the maximum penalty of RM20,000 is chargeable to anyone found guilty of dumping waste illegally. To highlight any illegal dumping, residents are advised to call MPP at 082-615566 or Trienekens at 082-612300. — DayakDaily