Indiscriminate dumping on the rise says SWMC official
Operations Officer at the Solid Waste Management Corporation (SWMC) Mr. Valentine Heyliger has called for a more concerted effort in dealing tackling indiscriminate dumping. He has suggested that the security forces monitor sites where garbage is dumped illegally at certain times of the day such as late night or early morning. “The landfill is not open at that time, (if the vehicle has) garbage you know they are going to do something illegal. Stop them, write down (their license plate information and pass it on to Solid Waste.”
The SWMC official suggested that indiscriminate dumping seems to be on the rise in St. Kitts. Just last week, two old mattresses and garbage bags filled with green waste were found lying along College Street Ghaut, which Mr. Heyliger said was unaccounted for. According to Mr. Heyliger, the garbage was left there for the garbage trucks to collect, but it is not the policy of Solid Waste to collect such large municipal waste, or green waste. “The garbage was not there Saturday, it wasn’t there Sunday night…up to after 8. Garbage had to have gone there between maybe 10 o clock and early morning 6 o clock,” Mr. Heyliger said, adding that residents in the area corroborated the information. “All they had to do was hold it until you get a vehicle to take it to the landfill…it’s only going to cost you $5,” he added.
With the increased drought like conditions causing some of the island’s green space to become dry and brown, the SWMC official pointed out that waste dumped illegally in some of these areas are now being exposed. “Now that you are having a drought a lot of those stuff are being exposed because normally during the rainy season you don’t get to see those stuff…Overall there is an increase in dumping because persons feel they can get away so they doing it. And there is a lot of cross dumping because persons leaving areas and going into where you have the communal bins and dumping stuff in them when they shouldn’t do that. They’re getting paid from a commercial entity and dumping them in communal bins. That’s illegal,” Heyliger said.
He is also making an appeal to persons to desist from illegally dumping garbage in open fields, especially on the aquifer which plays a vital role in St. Kitts’ water supply. “It’s really deplorable the things that were thrown there: washing machines, stoves, derelict vehicles, slot machines, there were even fat coming from a commercial entity…the stench there was very awful,” Heyliger lamented. In fact, he suggested that when perpetrators discover that the SWMC is closing in on their illegal act, they set alight the canfields with the hope of concealing the dumped garbage.