By Hana Namrouqa

AMMAN – The Ministry of Environment is embarking on a waste sorting and recycling project at public agencies, a senior government official said on Sunday.

Work is under way on an integrated plan for sorting and recycling solid waste generated at ministries and government institutions to spread the culture of recycling in Jordan, Minister of Environment Yaseen Khayyat said yesterday in a statement issued by the ministry.

“The ministry and the Rangers started placing recycling bins at the ministries under the first phase of the project… The goal is to recycle waste generated at the ministries while setting an example that encourages people to sort their domestic waste,” the statement quoted him as saying.

The minister noted that a private company will be responsible for collecting and recycling the waste from the ministries.

“The project seeks to promote a culture of recycling at the source and encourage sound and safe management of waste… which can be used after recycling for providing materials for local industries and investments…,” Khayyat noted.

Under the first phase of the initiative, the recycling bins will be placed at ministries that, according to a survey, generate the most waste, Ministry of Environment Spokesperson Isa Shboul told The Jordan Times yesterday, highlighting that the project mainly aims at improving environment conditions in the country.

Safe disposal of solid waste in Jordan remains a concern, with most of the Kingdom’s municipalities – except for Amman – disposing of solid waste in open dumpsites with no lining, management or biogas collection, according to environment experts.

On average, 2,200 tonnes of waste are collected daily in the capital and sent to the Ghabawi landfill, which is situated some 25 kilometres east of Amman and serves the capital and the central region.

Established in 2003 at a cost of JD16 million, the 3,000sq.m landfill has the capacity to handle 2,500 tonnes of waste per day.