GGGI Supported a Study Tour to the UK on Solid Waste Management

LONDON, The United Kingdom, February 17, 2020 – The GGGI Cambodia team and the Waste & Resources Action Program (WRAP), supported the British Embassy in Phnom Penh, organized a study trip to the United Kingdom (UK) to learn about the UK’s waste management systems and technologies. Entrants in the study trip included eight Cambodian provincial and national government officials and were accompanied by the GGGI Cambodia team’s waste management officer, the UK ambassador to Cambodia, the director from the UK Embassy’s department for international trade and the manager from the British High Commission Singapore. In London, the delegation was joined by the Cambodian Ambassador to the UK.

The one-week mission took place in London and Northern Ireland and started with a visit to the Department for International Trade for an overview of the UK waste management systems including recent trends, strategies and policies. The following 3 days consisted of visits to treatment plants most relevant to the Cambodian context, namely:

  • A Material and Biological Treatment (MBT) plant to treat unsegregated household waste.
  • Two anaerobic digestion/biogas plants to treat organic waste
  • An Incineration to Energy plant to treat residual household waste
  • A Material Recycling Facility (MRF) to separate commingled recyclable wastes such as paper, glass, cardboard, and cans
  • Various technology providers in Northern Ireland

The delegation also visited the London Waste and Recycling Board to learn about strategies and actions at the city level. During the visit, the delegation learnt firsthand what technologies can achieve, their cost, and the systems required to enable their establishment. Some of the key learning including the long-term efforts required to educate communities on waste minimization and source separation to achieve meaningful targets, and the need for government support and adequate taxation to enable setting up financially sustainable waste processing facilities. The delegation also learnt about source separation of recyclables at a household level, and the need to focus efforts on organic/food waste as it is the largest waste fraction, can be recycled, and because it contaminates the rest of the feedstock. Finally, the need for complementary technologies such as waste to energy for residual waste that cannot be recycled was also observed.

These learnings will be very useful as the Cambodia government is aiming to improve the waste management system in the Kingdom, with form example Phnom Penh embarking on a revamp of the collection and transport system while considering the implementation of large-scale waste treatment facilities.

About the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI)

Based in Seoul, GGGI is an intergovernmental organization that supports developing country governments transition to a model of economic growth that is environmentally sustainable and socially inclusive. GGGI delivers programs in over 30 partner countries with technical support, policy planning, and investment advice. More on GGGI’s events, projects and publications can be found on You can also follow GGGI on Twitter and join us on Facebook, YouTube, and LinkedIn.

About Waste & Resources Action Program (WRAP)

WRAP is a not- for- profit company which believes that sustainable patterns of consumption and production are the key to achieving global sustainable development goals. Its mission is to promote and accelerate the move to a resource-efficient economy to protect natural resources through product sustainability, behavioral change, and waste, and resource management. WRAP works with businesses, communities, and individuals to create innovative plans to help the UK use resources in a more sustainable manner.

About the UK Embassy in Phnom Penh

The UK Embassy in Phnom Penh was established in 1953 and has been working to sustain and develop the important relationship between the United Kingdom and the Kingdom of Cambodia. Divided into 24 ministerial departments, the embassy covers a range of political, commercial, economic and security issues of interest to the UK and Cambodia as well as providing consular assistance to support British nationals in Cambodia.