State of Waste Management in South East Asia
There is a growing concern among the ASEAN countries on the increasing rate
of waste generation as their populations grow. There is a significant variation
of waste types and in percentages of waste generation due to varying income
levels and extent of urbanization in the different countries. There are a number
of laws for waste management but in most countries these do not address waste
management in its entirety. What is especially missing is legislation for storm
The institutional framework for waste management in most ASEAN
countries is unclear. Specific government agencies are mandated to manage
sectors but their roles and responsibilities are clearly defined. Furthermore,
data collection has to be improved especially in terms of quantification
and characterization of wastes and their impacts on environment and health.
is practiced to some extent and only in some waste sectors. For instance,
Singapore uses the IWM approach for municipal and industrial solid waste, while
Malaysia uses the same approach for industrial wastewater and hazardous waste.
Generally, a majority of ASEAN countries suffer from lack of resources, notably,
financing, technologies, capacity and skills for waste management. However,
all member countries of ASEAN aim to be able to apply IWM in some, if not
of the waste sectors in the future. It is envisaged that a facility for regional
cooperation would be able to assist in this respect, by enabling the exchange
of ideas and resources among member nations. This facility would allow and
prepare the region as a whole to be better equipped for managing wastes now
and in the future on a more sustainable basis.
In summary, Table 9 provides
an overview of the general waste management status in the ASEAN countries,
which is reflected in terms of availability of formal
policies, institutional and regulatory frameworks, budget support, training
programs, participation from the private sector and the communities, and
information system for waste management.