By Roderick Macleod
(enca) Forty years ago, the Repi landfill site, the largest and oldest of its type in Ethiopia, sat on the outskirts of the country’s capital city of Addis Ababa.
Now, with a population swelling to almost five million and industrial and urban development expanding at an exponential level, the 36 hectare solid waste dumpsite has become a part of the bustling city.
This has led to serious concerns over health and sanitation. Toxic fumes and leachates discharged into the local area cause dangerous pollution, a foul odour and pose risks to human health.
“There is a school nearby, and kids and their parents fell ill and literally fainted from the smell,” Fitsumbrhan Beyene says, standing on the almost 20 metre high mound of rubbish.
Beyene is spearheading a project by the Horn of Africa Regional Environment Centre and Network (HoA-REC&N) to have the landfill site transformed into a multi-purpose area for locals to use. Read more on ENCA