Yangon to upgrade disposal of toxic waste

The Yangon government will construct an incineration facility within the year to properly dispose of the hazardous hospital waste, which at present is being burned in an open garbage collection area, an official said.

Dr. Aung Myint Maw, deputy head of the Environmental Conservation and Cleaning Department of the Yangon City Development Committee, said the facility will be built at the Htin Pin garbage collection area in Hlaing Tharyar township.

He said the machine can process 20 tonnes of hospital waste per day.

“Destroying hospital waste can be harmful to the environment,” he said.

He warned that some hospital waste can increase the risk of infection among people.

“Yet we are burning the garbage manually. It is not good for health,” he added.

Now, YCDC will upgrade the new incineration machine, which has a temperature of 900-1300 degrees Celsius, instead of a manual incinerator, which generates a heat of 300 degrees Celsius.

“We will try to be more safe than before,” he added.

U Aung Myint Maw said the incineration facility has a temperature of 900-1300 Celsius and could safely dispose of highly hazardous hospital waste.

Hospitals in Yangon city produce two tonnes of hazardous waste, which needs to be incinerated and 0.75 tonnes of waste that can be buried, the YCDC said.

Dr. Khin Maung Lwin, a practicing doctor and an environmentalist, said hospital waste must be systematically treated before disposing.

“Private hospitals should also take precautions. I would like to urge patients and attendants to dispose the garbage systematically. If not, many diseases can be spread,” he said.

Disposable bags for hospitals are distinguished by colours for various types of waste in Myanmar.

Once filled, these bags are first stored at temporary holding areas and are discarded only after being sterilised, according to the Ministry of Health and Sports.

Source : Myanmar Times

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