Home | News    Saturday 21 August 2010

Hazardous waste remaining challenging in South Sudan

By Ngor Arol Garang

August 20, 2010 (RENK) - Studies are underway to translate a guide report for environmental sound management of hazardous wastes in Southern Sudan.

The upshot is to assist in the implementation of the upcoming Environmental Management policies for environment ministry in the government of
Southern Sudan.

“The guide report is ready. It is waiting for delivery to the minister for his approval. I have requested that the document be reduced so that it becomes user friendly. It will be distributed to all ten states of Southern Sudan and more importantly in oil producing areas,” said Garang Mawien Acuil, a training facilitator in an interview with Sudan Tribune from Juba on Friday.

Acuil, a doctoral student at Manchester university in united Kingdom, also told reporters at the opening of a two-day regional strategy workshop on hazardous waste management in Juba that recommendations in his report would help strengthen what he termed the existing blanket law and institute penalties for specific offences.

He said that he expects local government officials to enact bylaws that suit them best in relation to the violation of environment management laws and ensure that judges are aware of them when they prosecute offenders.

“Hazardous waste management remains a considerable problem in our region as a result of limited resources and lower priority assigned to it when compared to waste water and public solid wastes. The situation in Juba today is self explanatory. No proper waste management systems in the provisional capital hosting regional government are in place let alone states,” Acuil said, calling on the newly appointed environment minister to engage in environmental protection campaign programs.

The academic further revealed that his school was also considering extending master degree scholarships to the ministry through education ministry as way to impart knowledge to government employees who would ensure that there are environment officers and committees in all states and counties to supervise and monitor the management of hazardous wastes and be first to inform the ministry when an infringement occurs.

“The spectra of hazardous waste needs special attention in order to protect human health and the environment particularly now when the world faces a presence of large quantities of waste with complex chemical structures that threaten life,” he said.

Experience worldwide has indicated that hazardous wastes are associated with health effects such as child growth disorders, cancers, reproductive system disorders and suppression of immunity, depending on the composition of the wastes.

Dr. Spencer Kenyi, a column writer in the Juba post newspaper, on environmental protection, once in 2007, said that cleaner production methods which eliminate or reduce waste output can be both economically effective and environmentally sound and called for the strengthening of partnerships with industry and research institutions in order to create innovative approaches to environmentally sound management of hazardous wastes.

The two day workshop, reportedly said to have brought together participants from various groups, is meant to provide a platform for sharing experience and devising regional strategies to address the growing challenges of hazardous waste management as the first step towards development of national action plans.

The workshop attended by 192 participants held at Kush resort hotel aims at protecting human health and the environment against the adverse effects that result from the generation, management, Tran boundary movements and disposal of hazardous and other wastes.