Fire at Sarimukti landfill, environmental activists highlight bad portrayal of open landfills

TIME.CO, Bandung – Environmental activists who are members of the Zero Waste Indonesia Alliance (AZWI) consider that fires in landfills or TPA SarimuktiWest Bandung Regency, as a poor portrayal of the practice open landfills. The Alliance lashed out fire This is due to the impact on the environment and the suffering of local residents.

Open landfill refers to disposal practices garbage or waste carelessly and erratically in inappropriate places,” said Meiki W Paendong, alliance member, regional executive director of West Java Environment Forum on Saturday, Aug. 26, 2023.

Practice open landfills, according to Meiki, it has a significant negative impact on the environment, human health and ecosystem sustainability. Garbage disposal mixes all types of organic and non-organic waste. For example, paper and plastic tend to catch fire when exposed to fire or high temperatures.

The Alliance urges waste management in TPA with a controlled system and sanitary landfill or burying waste with earth to prevent the recurrence of fires that affect the health of local residents. “The costs incurred as a result of a landfill fire can be far greater than the cost of purchasing daily or weekly ground cover,” she said.

Furthermore, according to another member of the alliance, Yuyun Ismawati, senior consultant of the Nexus3 Foundation, SOPs (standard operating procedures) are required of the TPA, even during the dry season. For example, there are fairly clear signs prohibiting smoking or fire, an early warning system and how to deal with sparks and fires.

“If water is just the beginning, it’s best to extinguish it using a landfill,” Yuyun said.

So far, the initial cause of the Sarimukti TPA fire is believed to have started with cigarette butts. However, according to the alliance, there are other clues that mention the buildup of methane gas that has exacerbated the fires that have lasted this week.


Sarimukti village head Uci Suwanda said smoke from the rubbish fire had caused more than 50 residents to complain of sore throats, shortness of breath and eye irritation.

According to another member of the Yaksa Conservation of Sustainable Earth (YPBB) alliance, David Sutasurya, the methane gas in the waste pile of the Sarimukti TPA comes from organic waste. This condition is a result of the failure of the city and regency governments of Bandung, Cimahi and West Bandung as landfill dumpers to carry out the segregation and treatment of organic waste in an optimal way.

According to him, the central government is also partly responsible because the technical standards on waste management have not yet provided specific indications. Furthermore, the existing regulations do not allow local governments to have the courage to enforce the law and increase the necessary budgetary allocation for waste management.

As a measure to deal with the Sarimukti landfill fire, waste disposal activities at the site have been halted. Fire extinguishing operations continued until yesterday. The local government is currently preparing a temporary TPA to accommodate the waste that is expected to be stored at the Sarimukti TPA.

Editor’s Choice: Sarimukti Landfill Fire: Waste Handling, Accumulation & Build Temporary Landfill

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