By Reuben Olita
A Kenyan subsidiary of Netherlands firm FINISH Mondial – Financial Inclusion Improves Sanitation & Health – has joined hands with the County Government of Busia to address solid waste management in the devolved unit.
The initiative which enjoys the support from Amref, focuses on adoption of local circular economies that equip communities to be climate-resilient by adopting an inclusive and sustainable approach to sanitation, health and agriculture.
Addressing the press today during a stakeholder’s sensitization workshop at the Busia Agricultural Training Centre, the firms Expert Sumeet Pawar, stated that women and youths play a crucial role in the circular sanitation economy, thus the need to ensure they bring positive change to strengthen local value chains and change the economics of green business.
He said the project which is expected to be cascaded down to grassroots level embraces the use co-compost technology which is natural based and cost effective production of organic manure for agricultural use from mixing raw materials such as organic waste and treated dry faecal sludge.
“This initiative embraces a multi-stakeholder approach in value proposition in a bid to advance sanitation, integrated soil fertility management and climate–smart agriculture practices. At the moment we are constructing a co-compost facility here at ATC that we will incorporate the County Government and residents,” he stated.
He added that through the through the co-compost application residents especially farmers can find a cheap alternative to chemical fertiliser, minimise greenhouse gas emissions, improve soil water holding capacity, increase crop yield and survival.
“In the long run, the project ensures prevention of faecal sludge and solid waste pollution to water bodies and enhance a clean and healthy environment for residents. In places where we have launched the project, farmers using our organic fertiliser reported improved harvest,” he said.
Busia Municipality Manager Ken Nabulindo who represented the Department of Lands, Housing and Urban Development welcomed the initiative which he termed timely in addressing the waste menace in the county.
“We still have a challenge in collection of waste considering that we mix everything during transportation despite availability of segregated bins. We will accord you necessary support to ensure we improve the management of waste in the County,” he said while urging the firm to encourage residents to monetise waste.
Other groups present included private waste collectors, staff from the department of Agriculture, Water, Lands, Busia Water and Sewerage Company (Buwasco), Public Health and Agrovets among others.
The project is also being implemented in India, Bangladesh, Tanzania, Uganda and Ethiopia.