With the data collected during the March 2014 assessment trip, we began working on the implementation of potential solutions.
We ended up targeting a few focuses:
We started out with an awareness campaign especially targeting high school students. Flyers detailing the dangers of the current trash disposal methods and alternatives to it were also dispersed to various individuals as well as health centers.
We also helped organize a river cleanup that cleared the trash and blockage of part of one of the streams as well as a nearby drain. It was highly successful with more than 300 volunteers and many contributing groups. Further river cleanups are desired by the population and are in the process of being planned for every other week.
Some investors are interested in establishing a soft plastics recycling factory in Kyaukme, removing the most abundant and harmful trash item from the waste stream with the benefit of no transportation cost. We are currently planning such a factory with the investors.
To create a sustainable future, plastics and especially soft plastics should not only be recycled, but replaced. There is interest in a bioplastics alternative, and the feasibility of this in Kyaukme will be researched intensively at MIT starting in September.
An organization to combat unsafe waste disposal is also in the process of being planned. Drawing on a large network of collaborations, it would organize and carry out the efficient and widespread implementation of solutions to the trash problem in Kyaukme and later the Shan State and further in Myanmar.
explored potential partnership with local government, taught high school
students, created flyers, explored organizing recycling collection system with
recycling shops and collectors
week 2: distributed flyers to health centers and individuals, considered establishing a recycling factory with interested investors, organized NGO meeting for future collaboration, looked into organizing a river cleanup
week 3: researched and planned the recycling factory, researched the potential to introduce bioplastics, organized and executed the river cleanup, brainstormed establishing a waste organization
week 4: planned waste organization