Managing Municipal Solid Waste in Kathmandu: Observation and Policy Recommendation

DNPSF_13S_Managing Municipal Solid Waste in Kathmandu - Observation and Policy Recommendation_Alka Sapkota-1

Author: Alka Sapkota, Daayitwa Fellow with Kathmandu Metropolitan City

The observation, analysis and policy recommendation in this document are derived from data and information obtained from Kathmandu Metropolitan City Office, past research on solid waste management and field study. Policy recommendations in this document are expected to help policymakers (officials in KMC and Government of Nepal) to analyze gap between current practice and policy. It is expected that it will help them to come up with more practical policies to solve waste management issue.

Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC), the capital of Nepal, is the most urbanized city in Nepal. It is home to more than one million people. Increased population due to unplanned urbanization has intensified environmental pressures including Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) management. KMC is responsible for collection, transfer and disposal of MSW. KMC uses hundreds of employees and spends tens of Millions of Rupees every year to manage solid waste. For KMC, it has become a one way investment with no returns.

The Government of Nepal came up with many waste management policies since 1987. The objective of solid waste management policies introduced time and again was to mobilize waste as resources and make solid waste management simple and effective. But KMC is still treating waste as a problem and spending tens of millions to solve this problem. Limited success on the door to door collection is attributed to the private sector which doesn’t have proper legal authority (and protection) to do it. All collection is done without any segregation and proper planning. Waste is being dumped without any treatment process which has led to environmental degradation and public health issues.

The above executive summary is based on a rigorous research work under Daayitwa- Nepal Public Service Fellowship program by Daayitwa Fellows starting 2013 onwards. If you wish to access the full report, please email us at
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