|Karnataka Compost Development Corporation plant|
The wet waste from homes is collected on a daily basis by BBMP and is processed at this plant and converted to compost which is totally organic and can be added to plants as fertilizers. The organic fertilisers are beneficial to the plants as well as to the farmer and others handling it. It is being sold to the farmers at the rate of Rs 200-300 per Tonne. If it is to be supplied to farmers at their site, the costs are Rs 800 per tonne.
The plant is one of the largest in Bangalore. Very neatly kept. Felt really proud to see this plant and the committed employees. It is one of the seven plants run by the Karnataka Compost Development Corporation in Bengaluru with a total capacity of handling about 2500 T wet waste daily. Bangalore produces almost 4300 T garbage daily, of which a cool 70% is wet waste.
One of the biggest problems faced by urban dwellers and urban governing agencies like BBMP is how to treat household and commercial garbage. About 70% of our garbage is wet waste, organic which can be composted and used as manure etc. Was really happy to see that BBMP was taking the lead in carrying out this very important civic activity.
|Great work .. One of the compost pits inside the campus .|
The proactive Karnataka government is about to bring in a legislation that wet waste will have to be processed at home by the public for first time ever in the country. This single step will daily take out about 3000 metric tonnes of wet waste, roughly 70%, of the 4200 tonnes of garbage produced daily in Bangalore (third populous city in the country after Delhi and Mumbai).
Imagine the great business opportunity this opens to the unemployed and semi-skilled people of this country. Rag pickers are the first point of contact for this garbage and if this garbage processing can be made a commercially viable and profitable activity with enough avenues to earn enough income, through classification, segregation and safe reprocessing and disposal, this can definitely contribute to nation building.
Of the 377 million urban residents of the country living in about 7935 cities and towns in the country generate about 62 million tonnes of municipal solid wastes annually, of which only about 43 million tonnes is collected back, about 12 million tonnes (20 percent) are processed and the rest 31 million tonnes (50 percent) is dumped in landfills, causing great environmental problems, health issues and future ground water contamination threats due to leeching from the surface land. (click here for www.downtoearth.com link for more details).
|Large blocks of recovered metal at a Japanese waste plant|
If we can just concentrate on being able to effectively treat this 50% of waste collected by the municipal authorities, but not processed effectively and dumped in landfills, it can solve a great portion of our unemployment problems.
The promise waste disposal and treatment can also give to the people of the country a healthy and hygienic living environment free of diseases and other natural threats. The potential is great and can contribute in great ways in increasing the employment potential across the country. Public-private participation in these ventures as has been done in Bengaluru, is the solution as government agencies alone can do very less in issues affecting the population.
|Turning garbage into gold, the Americas ..|
There is a gold mine in the wastes in India, 63 million Tonnes generated annually, only 12 million treated rest forgotten conveniently by the civic authorities, the government and the people.. What a CRIME !!
George .. (image courtesy Japan Times)