Asia’s pandemic waste emergency
Mountains of medical waste are growing in some of Southeast Asia’s largest cities, overwhelming countries that are ill-equipped to dispose of the thousands of tonnes of items used to fight the pandemic.
In Cambodia, workers have scant protection as they sort through used syringes, gloves and bandages before incinerating them.
Meanwhile, in Indonesia, needles and medical bottles are being dumped in landfill as medical clinics struggle to dispose of their waste.
In a collaborative project supported by JNI, investigative reporters from Al Jazeera’s 101 East program have worked with local researchers in Cambodia and Indonesia to examine this medical waste disaster — tracking what happens to the thousands of tonnes of medical equipment and personal protective gear that gets discarded each day.
Read more from the project
Journalists in several countries contributed to the 101 East documentary and have have published follow-up stories in English, Khmer and Bahasa Indonesia. These include:
The Australian Financial Review
- The COVID-19 front line no one is talking about — Emma Connors
- The Sprawling Mess of Cambodia’s Medical Waste Mismanagement — Gerald Flynn and Phoung Vanth
Thmey Thmey (Khmer)
- ការគ្រប់គ្រងកាកសំណល់វេជ្ជសាស្ត្រនៅកម្ពុជាស្ថិតក្នុងហានិភ័យខ្ពស់ — Gerald Flynn and Phoung Vanth
- ការគ្រប់គ្រងកាកសំណល់វេជ្ជសាស្ត្រនៅកម្ពុជាស្ថិតក្នុងហានិភ័យខ្ពស់(តចប់) — Gerald Flynn and Phoung Vanth
Tirto.ID (Bahasa Indonesia)
- Bencana Limbah Medis dan Ancaman Krisis Iklim — Adi Renaldi