Monday, April 14, 2014

Third Joint Coordinating Committee Meeting

The FSM Office of Environment and Emergency Management (OEEM), in collaboration with the Japan International Cooperative Agency (JICA), hosted the 3rd Joint Coordinating Committee (JCC) meeting of the Japanese Technical Cooperation Project for Promotion of Regional Initiative on Solid Waste Management in the Pacific Island Countries (J-PRISM), on February 27, 2014 at the  OEEM Conference room from 8 am to 11 am.

Invitations were sent to State Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Directors, State Department of Transportation and Infrastructure and Public Works Directors, FSM Transportation, Communication and Infrastructure Secretary, FSM Department of Foreign Affairs, PMU Project Manager, SBOC Director, Japan Embassy staff, and Pohnpei Waste Management staff. The meeting enabled EPA/KIRMA and Public Works Directors to address key outputs and activities implemented in their states during the 3rd year of the J-PRISM program, and propose a way forward.

The Government of Japan responded to eleven Pacific Island Countries (PIC) requests for its support of improved solid waste management in 2009. As a result, FSM is part of this regional technical cooperation project receiving technical assistance in the area of waste collection and disposal and landfill management. The overall goal of J-PRISM is to enhance sustainable management of solid waste in the Pacific region  for the purpose of  strengthening human and institutional capacity base through implementation of the Pacific Regional Solid Waste Management Strategy.

In his opening remarks, JCC Chairman Mr. Andrew Yatilman welcomed the participants and noted J-PRISM's assistance to the FSM states in the area of solid waste management.

Additionally, JICA Resident Representative Mr. Kaoru Iwasaki expressed his warmest regards to everyone and emphasized the importance of the J-PRISM's program in the area waste management.

State EPA/KIRMA and Transportation and Infrastructure/Public Works Directors from Chuuk, Yap, Pohnpei, and Kosrae presented on the current progress of their outputs under the J-PRISM program. Outputs that were addressed pertained to Policy and Strategy, Waste Collection, Waste Disposal, Awareness, and Legislations. A discussion followed the Directors' presentations in which several topics were raised for the Directors to share and exchange their views. Topics such as leachate monitoring, sharing of landfill designs among states, and submission of monitoring action plans were raised during the discussion. Those representing the states included: Yap EPA Director Christina Fillmed and DPW&T Director Vincent Figir; Chuuk EPA Director Ishmael Mihkel, DPW Assistant Director Binasto Ruben; Pohnpei EPA Director Albert Roby, Pohnpei EPA Environment Specialist Charles Lohn, Kosrae EPA Director Robert Jackson, and DT&I/PW Director Weston Luckymis.

Since 2011 through J-PRISM's technical assistance, the FSM states have developed solid waste management plans, improved waste collection and disposal systems, improved the management and operation of existing dumpsites, and participated in landfill and waste management techniques trainings in Japan. At the national level, FSM OEEM has finalized a National Solid Waste Management Strategy and is awaiting endorsement.

The JCC meeting ended with the closing remarks by Mr. Shiro Amano, Chief Advisor of J-PRISM. As well as praising effort of concerned parties, he told the importance of the waste management, which is an endless issue, as long as people produce waste, to be tackled for the next generation.

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