To make up for the loss of equipment cause by a fire that destroyed the Koror State Recycling Center last year, the Japan Embassy had handed over a new set of equipment for the facility that will help ease composting operations.

Koror State Government Solid Waste Management Office (SWMO) Manager Selby P. Etibek told Island Times that the equipment composed of a wood chipper and paper shredder were funded by the Japan Embassy through the Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Projects (GGP) worth $136,066.

After the fire incident last year, the operations at the facility had really slowed down after the equipment were destroyed by the fire last year but with the existence of the new equipment, the process will now become easier, Manager Etibek said.

“So this makes it much easier because in a composting facility we rely on microorganisms to break down organic waste and with the paper shredder and the wood chipper, it helps that process by breaking it down into smaller pieces and get to work much faster,” Etibek said.

According to Etibek, the new sets of equipment are bigger than the ones they used to have and have more automatic functions. The paper shredder, for example, automatically filters metals from the pieces of paper products with a magnet strategically placed inside it to pull away and separate metal materials from the paper. This also has a dust controller, making the operation, dustless. Before, shredding paper means dusts flying uncontrollably all over the facility, making it difficult for the operators to do their job without covering their whole body.

Last February 23, 2018, Japan Ambassador to Palau Toshiyuki Yamada and Koror State Governor Franco Gibbons signed the grant contract for the project at the Japan Embassy.

The GGP was launched by Japan in 1999 to respond to various development needs to support grassroots activities in Palau. (Rhealyn C. Pojas)