The pungent smell of rotting garbage fills the nostrils, as one enters into the narrow area of Thimphu city. From plastics to piece of papers, from medicine wrappers to glass bottles or slush particles to rotten vegetables and fruits; everything could be visible as one ahead where heaps of waste is being dumped. The waste management problem is growing ever large, apparently until a few years ago the trash was mostly found in the towns, but now it is found in the jungle, rivers, drainage and lonely area as well.

As Bhutan’s economy grows, so does its waste problem. Despite its tiny population, Bhutan’s economic growth has led to increasing urbanization and problems associated with biodegradable and non-biodegradable waste, which is actually threatening the beauty of one of the most pristine environments in the world. Bhutan’s economic growth over the last few decades has been striking (USD 135m– USD 2.2b) which means it has grew sixteen times larger along with waste production from individual household.

Poor waste management contributes to climate change and air pollution, and directly affects many ecosystems and species. Landfills, considered the last resort in the waste hierarchy, release methane, a very powerful greenhouse gas linked to climate change. Methane is formed by microorganisms present in landfills from biodegradable waste, such as food, paper and garden waste. Depending on the way they are built, landfills might also contaminate soil and water. 

My friend’s waste management is one of the most important steps to planning because without prior waste management and disposal you can’t make an urban or rural clean and hygienic.

So far Clean Bhutan has conducted 115 cleaning campaigns in towns and villages around 16 district involving 4431 volunteers and 20 clean-up programs along the four rivers of Thimphu-Chu (Thimphu-River) and Chubachu stream in Thimphu.  Moreover they have also conducted 44 such clean-up campaigns along trail trek routes. 

But, why the organizations have to conduct such campaign to keep our mother land clean? This statement simply proves that we are being irresponsible; we are throwing the waste where ever we wish to. We are contaminating an environment; we are being human less in simple word. We are destroying the beauty, that’s why such voluntarisms are required to correct our misbehaviour attitude towards nature.

Let’s stop it and be responsible. They are not only the citizens of Bhutan who should be responsible? Instead individual of we are responsible of where we are throwing our waste. 

The best solution to waste management is we being responsible. Otherwise no matter how much government try to solve this problem with new policies and new law. And no matter how much organization initiate to clean area, no matter how many number of dustbin are installed and no matter how many noticed are notify to keep area clean. Unless individual don’t try to change and think of being responsible nothing will be worthy. Therefore, please let’s be responsible and keep our home clean and hygiene. 

Let’s work together towards clean and hygienic Bhutan.

Contributed by Yeshi Wangmo