March 23, 2022. Vientiane, Lao PDR.
The grand opening of the Integrated Resource Recovery Center (IRRC), the first city government -led facility to process organic waste from municipal waste, and handover ceremony of electric waste collection trucks were held on 23 March 2022, marking a great milestone for waste-to resource initiatives in the capital city of Vientiane.
The grand opening was well attended by high-level officials from the government and international development partners including the Ambassador of the Republic of Korea, Vice Mayor of Vientiane Capital, Vice Minister of Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI), Vice Minister of Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MPWT), Vice Minister of Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE), County Director of KOICA Lao PDR, Director General of Vientiane City Office for Management and Service (VCOMS) and district and villages authorities.
Funded by KOICA, GGGI established the first IRRC in Lao PDR as part of technical support to enhance the capacity of Vientiane Capital in sustainable solid waste management.
The IRRC is designed to turn 2,000 tons of organic waste into quality compost annually, serving more than 10,000 people and business entities in three target villages – Nongnuathongneau, Pakthang, and Dongnaxoktai in Sikhottabong District, Vientiane Capital. By converting organic waste into organic compost, the first IRRC of Lao PDR is expected to increase waste-to-resource opportunities and climate mitigation impact in support of green city development of Vientiane Capital.
In conjunction to the grand opening of IRRC, the official handover of the four electric waste collection trucks with 3.5 m3 of capacity to the city government of Vientiane Capital took place. The electric waste collection trucks will enable VCOMS to provide door-to-door collection services to households who didn’t have access to waste collection services due to limited accessibility for existing collection trucks. With 3,000 kitchen and organic bins provided to the households, separate collection and transportation of dry waste and organic waste will be implemented to promote source separation at the community level pioneering the municipal-led source separation mechanisms. Collected organic waste by the e-trucks will be transferred to bigger waste collection trucks at the feeder point then transported to the IRRC for processing. This decentralized waste collection model combined with the construction of the IRRC is a great demonstration of how the 10-year solid waste management strategy and action plan for Vientiane supported by GGGI can turn into actions.
During the opening remarks, Mr. Phouvong Vongkhamsao, Vice Mayor of Vientiane Capital, expressed his sincere gratitude to financial and technical supports from KOICA and GGGI, emphasizing his commitment to making a greener city.
Appreciating the efforts and achievements made by the city government of Vientiane Capital for green city development, Mr. Moo-hong Im, the Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to Lao PDR, reiterated the Korean government’s will to accelerate cooperation between the Republic of Korea and Lao PDR for promotion of green growth in his welcoming remarks.
During the grand opening, GGGI and VCOMS introduced the step-by-step process and technology for turning organic waste into resource at the IRRC and the overall mechanisms of the decentralized waste collection service.
The decentralized waste collection service using the electric collection trucks will begin early April 2022 followed by a series of raising awareness and community engagement activities.