Who We Are
The Belize Solid Waste Management Authority (BSWaMA) was formally established through the enactment of the Solid Waste Management Authority Act, 1991, Chapter 224 of the laws of Belize Revised Edition 2000. The Authority was established to ensure that solid waste generated in the country is managed in an environmentally sound manner.
The BSWaMA, in conjunction with Local Government bodies and other stakeholders, is responsible for the safe and environmentally sound management of solid waste in Belize. Through the application of the concept of Integrated Sustainable Solid Waste Management and working within the framework of the waste management hierarchy, the BSWaMA, will continuously strive to improve on and contribute to the protection of human health/safety and the environment, the conservation of natural resources, and the promotion of the occupational health/safety of workers in the waste sector, both formal and informal.
The Belize Solid Waste Management Authority Is governed by a Board of Directors which is responsible for the policy and general administration of the affairs of the BSWaMA. The Authority, under the SWMA Act, is charged:
- With the approval of the Minister, by Order published in the Gazette, declare any area in Belize to be a “service area” provided that no Order shall be made in respect of an area within the jurisdiction of a local authority, except by a resolution of the local authority concerned.
- Make arrangements for the collection and disposal of all solid waste within a service area in accordance with the Act or any regulations.
- The Authority may, with the approval of the Minister, engage the services of a contractor to provide an efficient solid waste collection service within the service area.
- Preparation of a comprehensive regulatory framework including technical guidelines and/or standards related to solid waste management and Private Sector Participation.
- Prescribe charges and cost recovery mechanisms.
“service area” means such area of the country as may from time to time be declared by the Authority with the approval of the Minister to be provided with solid waste collection service pursuant to this Act; Under this legal context, the specific role of the BSWaMA includes overseeing the implementation and management of solid waste actions such as waste management education and promotional programs, planning and implementation of waste management facilities including transfer stations, recycling services and solid waste landfills.
Operations The Solid Waste Management facilities (Transfer Stations and Sanitary Landfill) constructed under the Solid Waste Management Project are managed by the Belize Solid Waste Management Authority and PASA Belize Limited oversees the day to day operations of the facilities.
Waste Collection Service In Belize there are no standard waste collection vehicles. Across the country, waste is collected in various types of vehicles ranging from dump trucks, pickups, tractor trailer and compactor trucks. The BSWaMA is not directly involved in the waste collection aspect of solid waste management. The SWMP beneficiary municipalities or the Contractors to the municipalities are responsible for the collection of solid waste and subsequent haulage to the Transfer Stations. Residents are encouraged to bag their garbage and place it in a covered garbage container. Yard clippings/green waste should be bagged or bundled for ease of collection. Tree limbs should be no longer than 4 ft in length.
Disposal The Authority currently manages the Mile 24 Regional Sanitary Landfill which is located at Mile 24 on the George Price Highway approximately 2 miles heading North. The facility is operational and is currently receiving waste from the municipalities of Belize City and San Ignacio/Santa Elena – Benque Viejo. The Regional Sanitary Landfill site is also equipped with hazardous waste cells.