Plastic waste accumulating at Kukum drainage pose health risk


Drainage at the Kukum market packed with plastic waste and betel-nut husk believed to provide a harmful environment to the surrounding communities.

WALK past the Kukum betel-nut market in Honiara and one could literally feel despair at the huge amount of plastic waste there.

Residents and market vendors tell Island Sun that the plastic pollution is growing, worse still, left untouched by authorities.

The drainage along the road leading to the Kukum market is loaded with plastic garbage, and is a breeding ground for mosquitoes, germs, and odour.

The Honiara City Council has made several attempts to remove the litter but has failed.

One main reason behind HCC’s failure to get rid of the plastic dump there is the continuous careless behaviour of public in disposing rubbish at the drain.

The plastic mountain blocks any means of drainage, leading to flooding of the road during times of rain.

HCC’s Chief Inspector, Environment Division, Mr George Titiulu said council from time to time has removed the mixture of rubbish there, but the issue there is about the consistency of littering on that drainage.

Titiulu urged everyone residing and operating businesses there to cooperate with HCC; one of the reasons too is that the drain also lies within their 7-metre area, which means it is their responsibility to clean it up.

He explained according to the seven metre by-law under the litter ordinance, the shops there already commits an offence and such kind of bulky waste, people can fine with $10,000.

But the challenge is weather these littering is coming from the shops, market vendors, users or residence, he adds.

“More plastic waste accumulate is an indicator of people are not mindful of how they throw rubbish, people are not well inform of the dangers of the rubbish accumulation,” Titiulu said.

In terms of people’s health, the accumulation of plastic waste and blockage of drainage Titiulu said it will implicate negative impacts to people.

This is because of the place will become breading site for mosquitos, rats, and other harmful insects and produces foul smells and it comes to people’s health, he adds.

However, Titiulu said council will continue to remove that mess at Kukum area and people need to be part of controlling plastic waste as well for a safe environment and keep the Honiara Clean.

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