Wed | Nov 22, 2017

Burning of tyres causing Riverton pollution

Published:Tuesday | October 10, 2017 | 8:54 AMPaul Clarke

Audley Gordon, the Executive Director of the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA), says the uncontrolled burning of tyres and other hazardous materials in and around the Riverton City Landfill in St Andrew must be stopped or regulated if the deteriorating air quality is to improve.

He was reacting to yesterday’s Gleaner Editors' Forum, in which the Jamaica Environmental Trust accused the authorities of giving up on clean air for the communities around Spanish Town Road in the vicinity of the Riverton City Landfill.

Gordon told The Gleaner that the NSWMA has a report that suggests the people burn tires to extract the wires contained in them for sale in the scrap metal trade.

Gordon notes that while he is concerned, it was not the remit of the NSWMA to take the lead on environmental matters, but adds that the NSWMA still had a logical role to play in the proper disposal of waste materials.

The Riverton City Landfill has been a major pollutant with frequent uncontrolled fires.

But Gordon says things have improved with a more robust fire suppression system put in place along with the compartmentalising of certain waste materials.