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A press release from the Belize Solid Waste Management Authority and Ministry of Natural Resources on Tuesday, January 10, 2017, indicated that the transfer stations of San Ignacio/Santa Elena, Burrell Boom, Belize City, San Pedro and Caye Caulker, as well as the Mile Twenty-Four Regional Sanitary Landfill will be closed down due to a misunderstanding in the contract between PASA Belize limited and the Solid Waste Management Authority.

Residents of all these areas quickly became concerned about the garbage collection in their neighborhoods. In San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, some residents had been complaining that their garbage had not been picked up in over two weeks. This latest press release indicating that the garbage transfer stations would be closed immediately cause some concerns. Would this mean that more waste would pile up on the island?

Ambergris Today spoke to the Solid Waste Management Authority’s manager who was on the island this week and he stated that the transfer stations on the islands of San Pedro and Caye Caulker are not and will not be closed under any circumstance. Garbage collected in the islands need to be shipped to the transfer stations on the mainland and that is where they are being kept  temporarily until issues with the contract are sorted out. 

He indicated that if garbage isn’t being picked up in your area its not the Solid Waste Transfer Stations Management Authority’s fault; the supervisor of your area is in charged of making sure everyone’s garbage is collected and taken to the transfer station. 

The Ministry and Belize Solid Waste Management Authority (BSWaMA) assures the municipalities and the general public that they are making every effort to  contain the situation,   and have therefore designated temporary dumping areas on the transfer station compounds to accommodate the garbage that continues to arrive.  This is an interim measure.

The Ministry is encouraging the public to minimize the amount of waste being generated. “We   kindly ask the users of the transfer stations to cooperate given the circumstances and to dump in   the designated areas. The municipalities and the general public at large will be kept abreast of further development.

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Solani Graniel

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