San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Limón Looking for Landfill

Instead of re-planning their annual carnival, officials of Limón municipality say they will focus on acquiring a dump to avoid future problems with city events.

Health Minister María Luisa Avila shut down Limón’s October carnival for the second year in a row because of the “lamentable” state of the Caribbean port city’s trash collection, which she feared could cause another outbreak of dengue fever.

Limón Mayor Eduardo Barboza said the town won’t be submitting a new logistical plan to the minister to reschedule the carnival.

Instead, the town will try to locate a landfill closer to their city than the one they currently use, which is 100 kilometers away. The distance means that trash piles up in Limón’s streets, attracting mosquitoes and, according to the minister, “a ton of rats.”

“If they had a low-risk farm for a dumping site I’d have had no problem giving them permission,” Avila said. “They have a million and one excuses.”

The mayor said they had trouble navigating the rules for buying and regulating a trash dump, but now they hope to buy a landfill site in nearby Tomatal before the end of the year.

Charlie Wanger, a real estate agent in Puerto Viejo for more than 10 years, said several clients contacted him about properties in Talamanca that could be used for waste disposal after Limón’s trash problem made national news last week.

–Elizabeth Goodwin


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