18 Jan

Nimba Again?

first_imgWe fail to understand why some people of Nimba County always force us to ask, “what is wrong with Nimba?”  Why are they always putting themselves and their county negatively in the news?    This is a question not for the politicians, who are usually at the center of the problem, but for the religious, educational and social people and institutions to wrestle with.Scarcely a year ago, Liberia’s Mano River Union partners, notably La Cote d’Ivoire, were installing light poles and electric wires in Nimba.  This was an initiative of the West African Power Pool (WAPP), to supply electricity to several interior counties, including Nimba County!But no sooner had technicians of the Liberia Electricity Corporation (LEC) begun installing the poles and wires, that people in the county started stealing the light poles, bulbs and wires!A few months ago Nimba youths staged a riot on the premises of ArcelorMittal, causing millions of dollars in damages.  Their mothers and aunts begged President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, who was visiting Nimba last week, to forgive the youths and release them from prison.  But the President said she preferred to let the law take its course.Also last week the county’s Development Superintendent, Teeko Yorlay, was fired because lawmakers accused him of disrespecting them.  The County Legislative Caucus asked the President to summarily dismiss him, which she promptly did. But Mr. Yorlay said he was dismissed because he refused to be part of a corruption ring surrounding the County Development Funds.And here comes another unfavorable story from Nimba, one of the counties hardest hit by Ebola with 135 deaths leaving many orphaned.  Our correspondent, Ishmael Menkor, reported in yesterday’s edition that five persons had been charged with theft of Ebola supplies.   The story recounts that for months the Nimba people were waiting for ArcelorMittal to complete an Ebola treatment unit, which was finally done.  Through the tenacious efforts of the Liberian government, one of the organizations coming forward with support for the Ebola fight is the World Food Program, which recently dispatched to Nimba a huge consignment of food, including beans, rice and cooking oil for Ebola victims.The report of the theft of food supplies meant for people suffering and dying from Ebola is shocking enough.  But to learn that four of the five perpetrators were members of the County Health Team is most disturbing.How does one steal from people who are suffering and dying, one’s own people at that—no, not strangers, but Nimba people in that Nimba quarantine center?  What does it say about us?With such behaviors and attitudes is it ever possible that Liberians can develop this country?  Do we really want development?Why were these people taking the rice to Saclapea, far away from the quarantine center in Ganta? The word “serious” is probably the most frequently used word in the Observer Editorial Column.  We have constantly appealed to, encouraged, even begged our people to become more serious about our country and people and more serious in our quest for national development.We seem always to forget that we are Africa’s oldest independent republic.  We surely cannot be satisfied with where we are in national development, when most of our people are illiterate or semi-educated at best, when most of our high school students cannot pass a University of Liberia entrance examination; when our healthcare delivery system is stunted, leaving us incapable of managing ourselves in the worst health crisis in our history; when our roads, energy and water supplies are down, among so many other development deficits.Is it not about time we got serious about life, about self-improvement as Liberians and about the survival, growth and development of our country?The only way we can transcend our failings is when we all join together in diligence, honesty, patriotism and conscientiousness to make it happen. May God grant!Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

12 Jan

16 injured in Rupert Craig Highway accident

first_img…minibus driver criticalThe driver of a Route 44 (Georgetown-Mahaica) minibus is now critical, while his 15 passengers all sustained injuries after the minibus they were travelling in reportedly collided with a canter truck at the intersection of Sheriff Street and the Rupert Craig Highway.According to the conductor of the minibus, 26-year-old Ryan Meusa, they were approaching the traffic light at the intersection when a truck, which was allegedly coming at a fast pace in the opposite direction collided with the bus.Meusa said that the impact caused the minibus to topple several times before coming to a halt in a nearby drain.The mangled minibus after it was pulled from the accident siteHowever, Guyana Times was also told that the bus driver was reportedly speeding along Sheriff Street and tried to run the traffic light at the intersection.It was reported that one of the passengers was pinned under the bus and had to receive assistance while the driver of the minibus, identified as Eusus Gentle, was rushed to the Georgetown Public Hospital after he was reportedly picked up out of a nearby drain.The Hospital’s Public Relations Officer, Mitzy Campbell confirmed that there were no deaths and that some of the patients had to be transferred to the High Dependency Unit (HDU), since there were some reports of persons receiving broken bones and fractured limbs.last_img read more

11 Jan

Husband, wife vie for council seats

first_imgBURBANK – A husband-and-wife duo with years of community activism under their belts will vie for the two City Council seats up for grabs against a pair of candidates who enjoy City Hall and union support. Carolyn and Phil Berlin, who have been involved in local issues including development at the Bob Hope Airport, made the cut in Tuesday’s mail-in primary. But the two finished behind restaurant owner Gary Bric and attorney Anja Reinke. The four will face off April10 for two council seats held by retiring Mayor Todd Campbell and Councilman Jef Vander Borght. According to campaign finance disclosures as of Feb.21, Bric had a war chest of $15,910, of which $15,081 was spent. An independent political committee called Working Californians spent more than $13,022 on consulting and mailers in support of Bric. Bric said Wednesday he doesn’t know about the committee, and calls to the Los Angeles-based labor campaign group were not returned. In 2006, the group backed Democratic gubernatorial candidate Phil Angelides and state Controller John Chiang, according to campaign filings. Reinke, 46, has served on Burbank’s civilian Police Commission since 2004. She has the endorsement of current council members, except for Councilman David Gordon. She disclosed $15,036 in contributions and personal loans and has spent the entire sum on her campaign. Carolyn Berlin, 60, served on the city Planning Board for nine years until 2003, while Phil Berlin, 63, served on the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport commission from 1995 to 2001. Both are endorsed by Gordon, often the lone dissenting voice on the council. Opponents have attacked their candidacy, citing concerns about the couple forming a voting bloc, which they dismissed, saying they are independent thinkers. Carolyn Berlin has a war chest of $21,776, including $15,526 in a personal loan. She has spent $14,757. Phil Berlin disclosed $21,197 in contributions and loans, and has spent $19,504. eugene.tong@dailynews.com (818) 546-3304 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Of 51,053 eligible voters in the city, 10,006 ballots were cast in the mail-only election. Bric finished first with 4,277, followed by Reinke with 3,900. Former city Planning Board member Carolyn Berlin took third with 3,258 and her husband, Phil, a former Bob Hope Airport commissioner, placed fourth with 2,946. Bric, who serves on the city Traffic and Transportation Committee, ran for council in 2003 and finished second in the primary ahead of Campbell, only to lose to him in the general election. “I’ve been here before, and it makes me that much more hungry to work that much harder,” he said. Bric, 54, is endorsed by the city’s public employee unions and the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, which also support Reinke. He also is backed by Vander Borght and Councilman David Golonski. last_img read more

11 Jan

Fire Captain Tom Worton thanked for 35 years service

first_img“He instituted a $5 penalty to the “Dirty Bird” aka “KFC” fund for those who don’t participate in the mandatory gym workout,” she read. “His crew notes that although Tom exhibits an honest and sincere ambition to become a gym rat, he is the highest contributor to the “Dirty Bird’ fund, and may actually be self-sustaining his own KFC addiction.” Jokes aside, Captain Worton is considered a confident decision maker and successful leader, who works hard to mentor younger members of the fire department. Worton was hired as a probationary firefighter shortly after graduating high school, and has gone on to complete hundreds of courses and receive several other awards and certifications.- Advertisement –last_img read more

11 Jan

Housing prices in northern B.C. increase for third consecutive year

first_imgDespite having house prices that average in cost of $375,000 according to the BCNRED, Fort St. John is said to remain affordable for families as median incomes are higher than other northern communities at $88,000. The average median outcome in the rest of northern B.C. is listed as $66,000.While housing costs have increased over the last three years, affordability in Williams Lake has improved. The improvement comes from falling housing prices. The news isn’t as good for Mackenzie and Kitimat as housing prices have increased. Affordability indicators for Prince George, Quesnel, and Prince Rupert have remained relatively flat.Members of the BCNREB serve the real estate needs of the communities from Fort Nelson in the north to 100 Mile House in the south.- Advertisement –last_img read more

10 Jan

Fernandinho target of racist insults after own goal

first_img0Shares0000While some internet users directed racist barbs at Brazil’s midfielder Fernandinho, others defended him © AFP / Benjamin CREMELRIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil, Jul 7 – Brazilian midfielder Fernandinho and family members have been victims of racist insults on social media since his World Cup own goal on Friday, when Brazil was eliminated by Belgium in the quarterfinals of the World Cup in Russia.Several internet users referred to the Manchester City player as a “monkey,” while some even threatened to kill him after Brazil’s 2-1 loss. The player’s wife, Rosa Glaucia, also found her Instagram account full of insults. “Your husband’s (screw up) ruined everything,” was one comment from guih_nevetti.Fernandinho’s mother had to close her Instagram account due to the heap of offensive comments on her profile.Shocked by the racist messages, dozens of internet users rushed to Fernandinho’s defense on social networks.On the Mundo Negro site, which specializes in black culture, a message illustrated by a photo of Fernandinho underscored that “the defeat of Brazil and the own goal do not justify racism. Nothing justifies racism. We are with you Fernandinho.”On Friday night, TV Globo journalist Glenda Kozlowski wept in front of the cameras, talking about how distraught the player’s family was.In the match in Kazan, Fernandinho’s own goal in the 13th minute allowed Belgium to open the scoring. The 33-year-old had already been severely criticized four years ago, when he was hauled off at half-time on Brazil’s way to a humiliating 7-1 loss to Germany in the semifinals of the 2014 World Cup.0Shares0000(Visited 2 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

30 Dec

Red Ribbon Week is here

first_imgFor the upper grades, some districts discuss drug issues in their science and social science classes. For issues like steroids, some districts rely on physical education teachers or coaches to inform students about the risks. Richard Evers, director of child welfare, attendance and secondary education at Charter Oak Unified, said that steroids are being discussed at the high school as part of the Health and Careers course the students are required to take. The issue is important because of student athletes, he added. Officials said that revisions to the drug education curriculum are revised based on new information from state and county health officials. Ultimately, convincing students of making good personal choices and leading a healthy lifestyle should be a topic of discussion everyday. Various district officials point out that national campaigns commemorated over one week focuses on broader issues and that having lively and insightful discussions among teacher and students in class is just as effective. “We pay special attention during the week but it has be on the everyone’s mind every day,” Evers said. caroline.an@sgvn.com (626) 962-8811 Ext. 2108 www.insidesocal.com/schools160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Strother added that in kindergarten classes, a medicine cabinet filled with “fake” medicine such as cough drops or aspirin, is part of the drug education discussions. “We keep it simple,” she said. The Red Ribbon Campaign was started when drug traffickers in Mexico City killed DEA agent Kiki Camarena in 1985. Ileana Reyes, director of communications for Informed Families, with the National Family Foundation, which sponsors the Red Ribbon program, said that the organization helps schools plan the weeklong activities. But the district is responsible for setting the agenda of the celebration, she said. School districts have district-wide drug education programs tailored for each grade, such as the Too Good for Drugs and Too Good for Violence, which is offered in Pomona and Rowland unified, and stresses making good decisions and not succumbing to peer pressure. With schools nationwide starting Red Ribbon Week celebrations today, good decisions and living a drug- and alcohol-free life will be stressed in thousands of classrooms. Local education officials laud the initiative – the nation’s oldest and largest drug-prevention program – that encourages school districts to partner with cities in getting the message to students. But they also said promoting a healthy lifestyle needs to be part of the daily classroom discussions, not just tied to weeklong campaigns like Red Ribbon Week. Starting the discussions at an early age will also benefit students, educators said. “We have to teach them the difference between appropriate drugs prescribed by the doctor and drug abuse, which is characterized by addictive-type behavior,” said Carol Strother, supervisor of health services at Baldwin Park Unified. last_img read more

28 Dec

DID YOU LOSE YOUR DOG IN THE EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT OF LGH?

first_imgThe little dog found at the hospital.Do you own this lovely Jack Russell dog which was found at Letterkenny General Hospital?The dog, which has a black collar, was found at the Emergency Department.If the little female dog is yours then contact 0851174476.DID YOU LOSE YOUR DOG IN THE EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT OF LGH? was last modified: September 13th, 2015 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

25 Dec

WALSHY ON WEDNESDAY – WHY ANYONE CAN GET ROLLED OVER IN SPORT!

first_imgThis week Donegal Daily sports columnist Paddy Walsh, recalls a week when John Haran rolled back the years, Jason Quigley rolled over another opponent and Ciara Grant got rolled over. BIG JOHN WAVES THE WAND FOR MAXI THE MAGICIANMan of the Match John HaranThere were invariable concerns for the security of the door-frame in the offices where this columnist once plied his trade whenever John Haran dropped in. They don’t call him Big John for nothing but at a stoop he was always able to negotiate his entry into the working space of the Donegal People’s Press and Donegal Democrat at Larkin House in Letterkenny. And since he picked up a football at whatever age and started advancing with menace in the direction of the opposition’s goal frame that concern was equally uppermost in the minds of many an opponent.Difficult to believe that the big man turned 38 years of age yesterday – though not according to Wikipedia who still insist that Haran is a “former Gaelic football” – but not difficult to believe that he put in a man of the match performance against Glenswilly in Sunday’s Dr. Maguire Cup showdown at MacCumhaill Park.Playing a captain’s role – even though he wasn’t captain – he helped leave Michael Murphy and his side chasing shadows at times (and what a shadow the Letterkenny man casts). And, let’s lash on the credit here, the man who was captain, Rory Kavanagh, was also hugely impressive in a St. Eunan’s performance that may not have matched some of their previous thirteen successes at this level but was still solid enough to dismiss the challenge of last year’s Donegal champions.A two point gap going into the closing seven minutes meant that Glenswilly were still very much in touching distance but a strong finish by Maxi Curran’s men – what a job the new boss has done – had opened that gap and marksman, Conall Dunne, fired over the point that confirmed Dr. Maguire was packing his bags and making the short trip to the O’Donnell Park. And no better man, or voice, than Eunan’s stalwart, Brian Kelly, to lead the chorus of ‘Letterkenny Town’ as the team celebrated at the finish (I’ve heard him render it at full volume on Letterkenny Reunion events and, like John Haran, he doesn’t hold back).Meanwhile, O’Donnell Park should be fairly heaving this Sunday when Roslea roll into town for the Ulster Club quarter-final. It’s a competition that Eunan’s have struggled to make an impact in but the very fact that local rivals, Glenswilly, managed to get to the Final last year should surely inspire the Letterkenny side to at least advance into semi-final territory.And, sure, don’t they have that “former Gaelic footballer’ in their ranks to aid them. And no Crossmaglen in their way.APPEALS AND PRECEDENTSThere were invariably two disappointed losing teams come the end of Sunday’s Final. One on the pitch and the second one, listening on from the Glens of Glenties and wondering if they could have overcome the black and amber on the day had they been given the chance. They weren’t, of course – their appeal to both the Donegal Competitions Control Committee and subsequently to the Ulster Council Hearings Committee falling on deaf ears and blind to a precedent set in Munster back in January.That match in Killarney involved a quarter-final tie pairing Pobalscoil Chorca Dhuibhne and Colaiste Chriost Ri which the former won after extra-time. But it transpired that the match referee had not sent off Corca Dhuibhne player, Barra O’Suilleabhain during normal time despite the fact that he had been shown a black card after previously picking up a yellow. Because of the error, the eventual winners were allowed to bring on a replacement for O’Suilleabhain.Cue an objection from Colaiste Chriost Ri and one upheld by the Munster Post-Primary CCC, resulting in a replay between the sides.Precisely the same situation confronted Naomh Conaill in their semi-final clash with Glenswilly. Ciaran Bonner, first of all given a yellow card, and later in the game shown a black variety and then permitted to be replaced by Oisin Crawford. The only difference is the Glenties team were not afforded the opportunity of a replay.Ah, sure that game in Munster was only a schools outing, some will cry, but it still fell under the rules and the umbrella of the Gaelic Athletic Association and was therefore a precedent to be followed – or not as was the case – elsewhere.No?KERRING FOR PAT’SBrian KerrAs if it wasn’t bad enough having three Dubs in the studio panel for Sunday’s F.A.I. Cup Final, we had another one in the R.T.E. co-commentating box in the form of Brian Kerr. And not alone a Dub but a confirmed St. Patrick’s Athletic supporter, having once managed the club and so obviously not lost any of his passion for the Inchicore outfit.That was clearly evident throughout the game – frequent Christian name references to the Pat’s players – and never more so than at the end when Christy Fagan had netted the decisive second score and George Hamilton reported thus:…”AND BRIAN KERR IS IN TEARS.” [Note: not tears of disappointment on Derry City’s behalf but instead from sheer delight that the Cup was destined for Richmond Park after a gap of fifty-three years].And the photograph of Kerr locked in an embrace with man of the match, Greg Bolger, dominant in some of the Monday paper coverage, and sporting a smile the width of the Liffey, offered, as if we needed it, another clue as to the affiliations of the R.T.E. pundit.Couldn’t – shouldn’t – the national broadcaster have roped in a complete neutral for the job, given that this was a Cup Final and not an international when you can get away with such bias? Someone like Dave Barry or Pat Morley – anyone but a blatant St. Pat’s disciple. Seriously doubt that Liam Coyle or the likes would have been slotted in beside Hamilton for the live coverage.But now a plus mark for the same Brian Kerr. You might have heard or read Roddy Collins remarks on the match and how he was “embarrassed” by the quality of it and how he had brought over Luton Town manager, John Still, to the Aviva to help him scout for potential talent.Apparently the latter – whose team occupy second spot in League Two in England – reported to Collins after the game: “There’s not one of those players would get into my team.”What? Not even former international, Keith Fahey, who has played at the top level in England? Or double scorer, Fagan? Or Chris Forrester? Or the afore-mentioned Bolger?True, the game didn’t live up to expectations as a spectacle though it had its moments but then how many Finals, either here or abroad, do? Answer – the four or five that were previously played at the Aviva since the League of Ireland’s premier Cup competition was relocated to the old Lansdowne Road. Thrillers all.Kerr was quick to hit back at the much-travelled Collins claiming that there were a number of players who could play at a higher level than the L.O.I.And Fahey, too, was critical of the comments by the former Bohemians, Athlone Town, Derry City and Carlisle United boss. “I could play League Two with my eyes closed,” he indicated modestly in a tweet.But then you’d sense that Collins was hardly likely to sing the praises of a game involving one of those sides that let him go.RAMELTON LIVEWIREStill on the Cup Final, I know he had been carrying an injury in the week leading up to the game but judging by the recording of the game I watched, Barry McNamee, when eventually introduced into the fray by Peter Hutton, could have made the difference had he been on from the start.The Ramelton native was a livewire and while he squandered a decent opportunity that would have put City level, he was still head and shoulders – though perhaps not physically – over his fellow Candystripers. Perhaps, another prospect for a cross-channel club though obviously one above the stature of Luton Town.Sean Houston – was his father, Mickey at the Aviva or at MacCumhaill Park watching his old side, St. Eunan’s in action in the county decider? – came on with two minutes of stoppage time left, not enough to make any sort of impact.But there were a couple of other Donegal images in the post match scenes, former Harps goalkeeper, Declan McIntyre, now in Derry’s backroom staff, warmly congratulating Pat’s boss, Liam Buckley. And another familiar figure lurking in the background, one Gerry McDermott, former sports reporter and editor with the ‘Donegal Democrat’, who was appointed F.A.I. Communications Officer back in 2006.Due to a slight reversal in the semi-final, Finn Harps were unable to make it to the Aviva but sent their regards.JASON FLEECES ANOTHERThe affable but deadly Jason QuigleyWhat about young Jason Quigley, then? At seven years of age engaged in his first ever contest up against an equally young – we presume – Noel McBride of St. Mary’s B.C. of Annagry.And here he is sixteen years on having claimed his third professional victory in the ring.That’s three professional bouts to date and three wins under the belt. And on course for his ultimate objective – a World title. Just don’t be surprised when – no if’s here – it comes.It must be said that he certainly wasn’t stretched in two of those fights – clearing the decks with last weekend’s opponent, Greg McCoy inside three minutes at the Memorial Hall in Plymouth, Massachusetts (far from the tender age of seven was Mr McCoy – more in the region of 38 and just back after three years out of competitive boxing).It took the Twin Towns man less time to dispose of his debut opponent in the professional arena – a technical knock-out 82 seconds into the first round leaving Howard Reece wondering what hit him.Fernando Najera lasted until the third round but was forced to retire against the Donegal Super Middleweight.The U.S., where Quigley is based for the time being, is beginning to take note but there’ll be much tougher bouts ahead if – sorry, when – he fulfils that ambition. Much tougher.But what a start for the likeable Ballybofey native.LUCKLESS CIARACiara Grant celebrates another stunnerNo joy for former Kilmacrenan Celtic player, Ciara Grant and her U.C.D. Waves team-mates in the Women’s F.A.I. Cup Final, the Aviva Stadium taster to the men’s equivalent.The Donegal woman scored a wonder goal for Sunday’s opponents, Raheny United in last year’s Final but having switched sides in the close season, there was to be no repeat despite an impressive performance in the right full-back slot. Indeed a 2-1 win for Raheny might have been greater had Grant not cleared off the line in a match that went into extra-time.WATER UNDER THE BRIDGE?New Donegal manager Rory Gallagher.Will Rory Gallagher be taking, or seeking, any advice from Jim McGuinness when the business end of his regime as Donegal manager gets underway in earnest?As much hope, I should think, as Irish Water have of being named semi-state body of this or any other year.WALSHY ON WEDNESDAY – WHY ANYONE CAN GET ROLLED OVER IN SPORT! was last modified: November 5th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Donegal DailyPaddy Walshsports columnlast_img read more

18 Dec

Joburg to produce its own electricity from landfill

first_imgGarbage trucks, men and birds work at the top of the Robinson Deep landfill site in southern Johannesburg. (Image: Lucille Davie) • Musa Jack • Executive Director: waste minimisation strategy and programmes • Pikitup +27 87 357 1044 • Recyclable living for all by 2016 • Plastic recycling major job spinner • Waste drive reaps rewardsLucille DavieAt the top of Johannesburg’s largest landfill site, Robinson Deep, not only is there a 360° view of the CBD and southern suburbs, but it is also the top of the city’s first methane gas-to-power project.To be operational in early 2015, four 1MW generators, costing about R10-million each, will be installed at the base of the landfill mountain, initially to pump 4MW of energy to national energy supplier Eskom.Robinson Deep, in the city’s southern suburb of Turffontein, is Joburg’s largest landfill site. Trucks roar up the one-kilometre track to the top from 7.30am to 2am, disgorging their loads on to the growing mountain of garbage. Men in gloves sort out plastic, metal and anything else of value. Once they have separated the recyclables, their loads are weighed and taken to a recycling depot at the base of the landfill.Joburg has five landfill sites – besides Robinson Deep, there’s Marie Louise in Dobsonville, one each in Linbro Park and Ennerdale, and Goud Koppies in Eldorado Park. Robinson Deep was opened in the 1930s and takes up about 124 acres of land. The methane gas it produces is 21 times more harmful than carbon dioxide. In May 2011, as a result of a flood of complaints about the smell from Robinson Deep, the city started flaring the gas by means of a network of 68 wells sent down into the landfill, to tap the gas. But towards the end of October, an independent power producer, Ener-G Systems Joburg, will start installing the four generators.An independent power producer is usually a private electricity utility that owns and operates facilities to generate power for sale to an electricity utility, central government buyer and end users.Each generator will cost about R10-million, so the total investment for the five sites will be R276-million, says general manager David Cornish of Ener-G Systems. The company has a track record: it installed its first pilot project in Richard’s Bay in KwaZulu-Natal, in 2009; it has developed over 50 projects around the world, producing over 120MW. It is anticipated that the Joburg project will have a life expectancy of up to 20 years.“Methane from waste is a huge source of atmospheric methane throughout the world and in South Africa it is a significant contributor to our greenhouse gas emissions,” writes Cornish in a document titled “Ener-G Efficient Solutions for South Africa“.The process started back in 2009, when the city awarded the project to Ener-G Systems. In October 2013, the city was the successful bidder to supply Eskom with power, under the Independent Power Producers programme. It is the only city council in the country to be doing this. When operating at full capacity, the gas from Robinson Deep will produce 5MW of renewable electricity generation capacity, enough for up to 5 000 households, says Cornish.Gas is also flared at Marie Louise, through 28 wells, and once all five landfill sites are operating to produce power, it will be the largest landfill gas-to-energy programme in the country, producing an estimated 19MW of power, sufficient to supply 12 500 middle-income households. The income from the sale of power to Eskom will amount to R800-million a year. A portion of this will be paid to the city as a royalty, which will largely be used to maintain the sites, says the city’s assistant director of integrated waste management, Simphiwe Mbuli. “We believe for the city it’s a good investment.”In the meantime, the city continues to make its landfill sites as environmentally friendly as they can be. First, the site is covered with waterproofing, to protect the ground water. Then, as rubbish goes into the landfill, it is covered with 150mm of earth, to reduce the smell and cut down on vermin and flies. Water running off the landfill is channelled away and evaporated. The landfill is also sprayed with disinfectant water so it does not pollute the air.Mbuli says that the city is looking into other technologies to deal with waste, as its landfill sites fill up. Possibilities are incineration and pyrolysis, or the composting of waste. “We are conducting a feasibility study now,” he adds.Separation at source programmeJohannesburg has an impressive separation at source programme; households separate waste into bags which are then collected from their pavements. The pilot scheme was started in 2009, and soon was expanded to areas as far flung as Orange Farm in the south, and Dobsonville, Modderfontein, Greymont, and Diepsloot in the north, in all almost 400 000 households. Randburg and Roodepoort will come on board later this year, with Midrand in the far north bagging its recyclables in late 2015. This means that some 15 000 tons of recyclables were diverted from Joburg’s landfill sites in 2012/13. The goal is to push that to 20 000 tons in the future.Those recyclables go to buy-back centres, where some 25 co-operatives and small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) have been established, creating 500 jobs. The 10 buy-back centres are made up of small, informal recyclers. Most of the centres were set up by the city, which will be providing more in the future. At present, Joburg also has 42 garden refuse sites, 20 of which are operated by SMMEs. They also accept recyclable waste. The city plans to upgrade all its garden refuse sites to enable recycling.“It should be stressed that the success of the programme depends solely on the citizens of Johannesburg changing their behaviour and appreciating waste as a resource,” says Musa Jack, Joburg’s executive director of waste minimisation strategy and programmes. She stresses that citizens must play their role as “anything to the contrary will be to the detriment of our environment”.last_img read more