Freetown is the national capital and oldest city of Sierra Leone with a population of 1,050,711 in the urban area. Due to the lack of a functioning waste management system, significant amounts of waste discharge into the local lagoon named Aberdeen Creek; this waste eventually makes its way into the ocean. Waste in the lagoon and in the ocean is a severe problem for both the natural environment and the local population, which livelihood depends on the sea.
The overarching purpose of the project is to improve the local environment and social economic and health situation through a sustainable and locally led waste collection and utilization business model.
The solution will reduce the waste which currently exist in the water environments in Freetown, while also create local jobs and awareness on the consequences of improper handling of waste - and the benefits if this is properly handled – for people, the environment and the economy. This is in line with the efforts currently led by the municipality of Freetown.
In the longer term, the project will facilitate a general improved awareness on the impacts of waste and the economic opportunities in properly managing it. This will support the mitigation and reduction of littered waste as well as addressing the currently overfilled landfills within the city and empty the surrounding natural areas of polluting waste.
The fact-finding mission has the following specific objectives: