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  • Writer's pictureUN-Habitat India

Workshop on Action Plan for Solid Waste Management concluded in Thiruvananthapuram

February 24, 2022: Under the project, “Waste Wise Cities: Tackling Plastic Waste in the Environment” funded by the Alliance to End Plastic Waste (AEPW), the UN-Habitat India office conducted an online workshop on February 24, 2022 on Action Plan for Solid Waste Management in Thiruvananthapuram based on the application of the Waste Wise Cities Tool (WaCT).

WaCT is developed by UN-Habitat, based on SDG indicator 11.6.1 parameters, to support cities and countries in undertaking a comprehensive diagnostic of Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) to aid scientific and evidence-based development of circular projects and investments

Ms. Swati Singh Sambyal, Waste Management Specialist, UN-Habitat addressing the stakeholders on the data assessment study conducted by UN-Habitat India office and need for transition to circular and sustainable resource management systems.

In November 2021, the UN-Habitat India team conducted a detailed ground assessment study to understand the existing waste management scenario in Thiruvananthapuram through the application of WaCT with support from Thiruvananthapuram Municipal Corporation (TMC), and local NGO, Sahridhaya. A sample size of 90 households (HHs) from high-, middle- and low-income groups participated in this study. The activities included the distribution of collection bags (2 bags each for wet and dry waste) to HHs and commercial units (CU), collection of segregated bags from HHs and CUs for eight days for detailed characterization, interviews of CU's and resource recovery centers, disposal facility assessment and characterization, mapping of the formal and informal resource value chain and estimating plastic leakages in the city.

The workshop was attended by 40 stakeholders which included officials of the Health Department representing TMC, Govt. agencies and parastatals responsible for and supporting SWM activities of the State of Kerala, technocrats, urban planners, institutions, recycler’s, local NGO’s, service providers and informal sector representatives.

In her opening remarks, Ms. Parul Agarwala, Country Programme Manager, UN-Habitat India mentioned the UN-Habitat’s mandate for SDG 11 which aims to make cities inclusive, safe, resilient, and sustainable intention to continue to work with local governments and keep its relevance by action on the ground. One of the core focuses is waste management and how the waste sector can contribute to meeting not only the environmental goals of keeping corporations clean and healthy but also improving the livelihood of communities. She also highlighted the potential impact and programs that can be developed based on the results of the Waste Wise Cities Tool.

The session was followed by a special address by Mr. Binu Francis, Secretary, Thiruvananthapuram Municipal Corporation (TMC) who discussed Thiruvananthapuram’s plan to transition to a sustainable and circular waste management system. He highlighted a few of the current challenges that TMC is facing and stated that the waste characterization and results from the WaCT assessment will help TMC develop a strategic plan to implement a circular solid waste management system.