Top urban news, trends and reports curated for the world’s city leaders. Edited by David Hatch

World Bank helps cities improve waste management

(Jose Angel Astor Rocha/

Unregulated or illegal dumps serve more than half the world’s population due to lack of trash collection in many developing cities. The World Bank aims to remedy the situation by teaming with municipalities such as Monrovia, Liberia and Ningbo, China on sustainable waste management. Since 2000, the Bank has supported 329 solid waste initiatives worldwide with lending that totals US$4.5 billion, it says.

Trash collection may lack the caché of ‘smart’ cities, but it’s a critical issue that impacts health, pollution and living standards. The World Bank warns that rapid urbanization, population growth and economic prosperity are straining waste processing resources in cities. The organization focuses on more than just proper disposal. It also emphasizes recycling, reuse and waste reduction.

Rosario, Argentina is among the cities that now offers modern trash collection with the World Bank’s assistance. Mayor Monica Fein credits the improved cleanliness with boosting the economy and environment, the article says.

After decades of war, trash lined the streets, waterways and canals of Monrovia. The Bank’s 2010 intervention helped the city create a safe landfill and close illegal dumps.

In Ningbo, the World Bank approved a US$80 million loan to improve waste management for 3 million residents.

World Bank

More from Citiscope

Latest Commentary