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The Ministry of Ecology and Environment in China has called for an increase in the medical waste disposal capacity in Hubei province, which is hard-hit by the new coronavirus epidemic.

By 11 February, the ministry had already sent 23 mobile disposal units to Wuhan, Xiaogan, Huanggang and other cities that are experiencing the majority of the outbreak. Ten additional units are being sent to Wuhan.

In addition, the ministry is providing 38 transport vehicles to Hubei province to expedite medical waste transportation. Furthermore, 25 more vehicles will be sent by 17 February.

The aim is to treat all the medical waste in order to control environmental risks related to the virus. To date, all medical waste is being disposed of on a daily basis, noted the ministry.

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Estimates show 317.5 metric tonnes of medical waste disposal capacity in Hubei per day. This is said to represent an increase of 137.5 tonnes per day compared to before the outbreak.

Since 20 January, the disposal capacity in Wuhan city increased by nearly two times to 1,123.8 tonnes.