Tons of garbage and the pungent smell of decaying waste is what welcomes you at the Nanyuki dumpsite.
Heaps of garbage are unbearable at the site but Francis Githui sits between piles of bags packed with all sorts of waste from Nanyuki and the neighbouring towns.
Garbage management, land-filling and recycling have been a problem in major towns but Githui is determined to reuse the waste and make various products as a way of reclaiming the dumpsite.
When Mt. Kenya Star visited him at the dumpsite, which has now turned to be his workplace, Githui was in company of 10 other people who help him sort out the waste and assemble them separately.
Beside him is a fabricated crusher which he uses to dismantle liqour bottles into fine particles.
The plastic materials are melted and mixed with the crashed bottle particles before they are shaped to cabros and granite floor tiles.
He is enthusiastic about reclaiming the dumpsite such that in four months since he kicked off the initiative, he has managed to segregate about four tonnes of waste by sorting different waste and recycling them to make different products.
“My plan is to reduce the amount of waste piling here and reduce the area where garbage collectors dump the waste and the remaining area will be left for sorting and recycling,” he added.
He has prototypes of the various products made by recycling including charcoal made from combustible waste compacted with a machine.
The biodegradable waste, which he said is dumped in volumes, is used for compost manure.
“Once the manure is ready, we will take samples for testing to find out the components so that if there are dangerous materials like heavy metals, we will be advised on how to work on it further and give it out to farmers,” Githui noted.
Milk packets that end up to the dumpsite come in handy in setting nurseries for indigenous trees and fruit trees seedlings including avocado.
“I gather the avocado seeds that are dumped here from the market then I fill the milk packets with soil and put them in nursery beds,” said Githui.
The 30 tree nurseries beds done at the dumpsite have about 12,000 seedlings which he said would be distributed to schools and homes for planting upon maturity.
“Fruit trees are hard to cut down because there is social attachment with families since it is a cash crop. We will provide the seedlings to primary and secondary schools, churches and anyone willing to plant avocado trees in their homes,” he added.
Other tree seedlings planted at the nurseries are 1,000 bamboos, 500 merbly seedlings and 6,000 guava fruit tree seedlings.
The bamboo and indigenous trees he said would be planted on the riparian.
Githui’s plan is to reclaim the dumpsite that sits on 13 acres such that only one acre will be used for dumping and the rest left for recycling of waste materials.
The environment crusader believes that nothing goes to waste at the dumpsite because he has a way of recycling them to make products.
Vehicle tyres dumped at the site are used as tower gardens for planting vegetables.
“We are used to the old way of burning garbage and that will never solve waste management issues. Plastic materials are a major problem in recycling of waste and that is why we want to reduce the amount of waste that is burnt like vehicle wheels,” he added.
Going forward, Githui will consider himself successful when Nanyuki dumpsite will transform to a recovery center and restore town’s green image.
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