By FINNIGAN WA SIMBEYE, 16th May 2011 @ 12:00, Total Comments: 0, Hits: 3063
FINALLY an Italian company which jointly invested two million Euros (about 4.3bn/-) with Dar es Salaam City Council to generate electricity and burn methane at former Mtoni dumpsite in Dar es Salaam has resurfaced and defended the project.
In a statement sent to the 'Daily News' over the weekend, Consorzio Stabile Globus said it is complying with all requirements of Clean Development Mechanism accredited project as per the Project Design Document.
Although CSG and DCC ruled out the possibility of generating electricity from the 1.8 million tons of solid waste at the former dumpsite, methane flaring has been going on hence qualifying the only CDM accredited project in the country to be awarded certified emission reductions (CERs) last year.
But critics including Assistant Director of Environment at the Vice- President’s Office, Richard Muyungi said recently that delay in implementing the country's only Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) project has gone beyond acceptable standards.
"This project is supposed to have started generating 2.5 megawatts of electricity from the dumpsite gas, but so far they are still using Tanesco power and sometimes diesel generators," a vividly disappointed Mr Muyungi told the 'Daily News.'
The VPO is the Designated National Authority in the country which means that all CDM projects are approved and supervised by this office. Muyungi, who was a member of the CDM Board of Directors between 2005 and 2007, worked hard to ensure that the country has at least one CDM project.
CDM projects are renewable energy investments approved by a Germany-based secretariat, as part of the Kyoto Protocol initiative to combat green house gas emissions blamed for global warming.
According to the project's design document (PDD) approved by the CDM secretariat in 2007, Mtoni project was supposed to start generating 2.5MW of electricity from an estimated 1.8 million metric tonnes of methane and other gases lying beneath the closed dumpsite last January.
But a 'Daily News' survey at the area earlier this year revealed that there was literally no security guard to protect the project area from trespassing vandals. It has also been observed that soil erosion from heavy rains left plastic garbage projecting to the surface.
Residents in the area complained about the foul smell emoted by rotting garbage. Fumes can be seen rising to the sky when it rains.
This indicates that methane is escaping into the air, according to experts. Leachate oozing from the poorly covered dumpsite is also threatening the lives of thousands of Dar es Salaam residents, as vegetable growing goes on using polluted Kizinga river water for irrigation.
But the Palermo based firm defended its investment, saying: “It seems that there is a little misunderstanding about the project purposes and duties and the other problems related to the landfill which are out of the project scope.”
The statement also defended the two million Euros investment as genuine although experts argue that the amount is too much to sink into the project which has failed to meet its over 202,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide per annum. Last December, the Mtoni project received 13,000 CERs approved by CDM executive board despite the shortfalls.
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