Accra exports rubbish to Asia

Accra has started to export rubbish to China and Malaysia in a bid to manage its refuse more effectively.

Most of the exported raw waste sent from the Accra Compost and Recycling Plant Ltd in the Adjei Kotoku suburb comprises plastic materials which are recycled into clothes and textile products in Asia.

The plant has the capacity to produce 300 tons of compost daily but is currently incapable of processing all the waste it receives.

The plant's managing director Owura Safo says it has plans to commence full recycling of all materials in the future. In the meantime it exports some 60 tons of waste for recycling in Asia every week.

Safo estimates that Accra generates over 2,500 tons of solid waste every day “but only 60 per cent of this waste, representing about 1,500 tons, is collected and disposed [of].”

He identified landfill as Ghana's principal method of solid waste disposal but complained of a limited number of dumping sites, lack of required technology and increasing costs.

Safo said that between 40 and 50 per cent of Accra’s waste is biodegradable organic matter.

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