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Pacific TA programme goes to Kiribati


Kiribati Brett and Harry head and shoulders shotKiribati landfill photo could be anywhere  

Brett Way, Utilities Manager for Central Hawkes Bay District Council, was the first person in New Zealand to embark on a PacificTA project when he worked in Kiribati in April 2013.  Brett has since undertaken a further two visits to Kiribati in November 2013 and June 2014.

Mr Way said his first trip had proved both challenging and fulfilling.  The tiny nation is densely populated, facing major pollution issues and one of the world’s most vulnerable nations to the effects of climate change.

His tasks included helping Kiribati authorities to establish the best ways to extend the life of existing landfill facilities and maximise the efficiency of their waste collection services.

This included looking at better ways to compact waste and to cover landfill to prevent animal scavenging and flies.

“In New Zealand you would put a soil lid over the landfill, but there is very little soil on the island and sand is not suitable, so we tried different alternatives and found heavy coconut palm fronds were quite effective,” he said.

He also provided health and safety, and traffic management training for rubbish collection staff.

“It is largely a mentoring role," he says. “The emphasis of PacificTA is working alongside the local authorities.  You have to step back from what you do in New Zealand and recognise that they have very limited resources, and you have got to work with them on what they have got.  What is standard in New Zealand you simply cannot get in Kiribati.”

Mr Way said council staff were enthusiastic about sharing ideas and the Kiribati people were welcoming.

Kiribati H s training group photo2 

To read the full Kiribati waste reports, click on the links below.


Review of waste management

In July 2014, Brent Aitken, from Taupo District Council, accompanied Brett Way to undertake a review of the strategic direction for waste management in Kiribati.  With Betio and Teinainano Councils both experiencing rapid growth there is an on-going need to encourage community behavioural change.  Behaviour change in the community needs to be supported with robust service delivery that ensures that pubic expectations of a consistent and reliable service are not undermined. It was proposed that the councils look at the option of sharing the delivery of waste management services on South Tarawa.

To read the report on the review of the Krirbati waste management, click here.

Dog control

Roaming dogs    TUC wardens

Clynton Chadwick, Hasting District Council, has also been to Kiribati to advise on dog control, health and safety, and animal welfare issues.

Free-roaming dogs present a challenge for urban planners, councils and residents alike.  Free-roaming dogs, those animals without owners or means of identification, pose public health problems, present a public safety risk and have an impact on public mobility i.e. people are unwilling to walk in urban areas.  Residents like having dogs as they protect property.  While it is probably the case that dogs eat a lot of refuse such as deceased animal carcases and food waste, which in turn reduces the abundance of flies and other vectors of disease, the costs of having too many dogs is high.

To read the full Kiribati dog control report, click here.

Sustainable funding options

At the request of Betio Town Council, Murray Staite worked identifying revenue raising options for the council. A number of options to improve revenue were identified for further consideration. Building the capacity of the staff and council members for financial management and decision making was also recommended.

To read the 'Focus on Revenue Raising' report, click here.

Date updated: 23 June 2017