Office of Strategic
FOR FIRST TIME IN HISTORY
CITY-WIDE GARBAGE COLLECTION BEGINS IN BAGHDAD
Baghdad, Iraq…August 17, 2003—All Baghdad residents,
regardless of social or economic status, have access to garbage collection for
the first time in city history this week. The Coalition Provisional
Authority in conjunction with the City of Baghdad is proud to announce the
establishment of the first city-wide garbage collection system.
Under the regime of Saddam Hussein only the most prominent
Baghdad residents received garbage collection services. No consistent,
universal system existed except in the wealthiest areas of town.
Even then, garbage was collected only if residents tipped the city
workers who came into their neighborhoods.
This week, more than 1400 trucks have begun running a series
of new routes reaching every part of the city. The trucks run two to
three times per day to collect the more than 22,000 tons of waste generated
every week. It is the first time that residents will have these services
regardless of social or economic status.
Faris Abdul Razaq Al-Aasam Deputy Mayor for the Municipality
stated, “This is a dramatic step forward toward improving the quality of life
for millions of Iraqis. Under Saddam, residents’ garbage often piled up for
weeks, or was never collected. The regime simply didn’t care about the
health risks of this neglect on the city’s population.”
Under the former regime, the vast majority of Baghdad
residents, left trash along the streets, incinerated it in their yards or
brought the refuse to a neighborhood location where it was continuously burned.
Trash burning and the piling up of refuse have dramatic
human health effects. The old system contributed to an environment where
disease could spread. The constant burning of refuse also released toxins
into the air creating dangerous breathing conditions.
“This was not about getting a system back up. This was
about putting a system in place for the first time,” stated Henry Bassford
Senior Advisor to the CPA for Baghdad. “Everyone deserves to live on a
clean street. This new system will help the people of Baghdad reach that
The Coalition and the City are in the process of developing
a public awareness campaign about the garbage removal system to educate
residents with the routes, pick-up times and days. Plans are also
underway for the creation of Iraq’s first environmentally friendly landfill and