The civic solid waste management department has decided to set up small compost plants across the city, where biodegradable garbage will be converted into fertilizer. The aim, an official said, was to take the load off the Dhapa dumping ground, the capacity of which has already been exhausted. On Friday, even Bidhannagar Municipal Corporation had a discussion at its MMiC meeting on its plan to set up 10 waste-to-compost plants in Salt Lake.
KMC has already started work on four plants in south Kolkata, the first one at Chetla nearing completion. Construction of three other plants along Tolly’s Nullah, between Kundghat to Garia, is under way. According to a KMC solid waste management official, once these four are ready, more will be planned at wherever land will be available. “A major advantage of these mini-compost plants is that they require very little space and investment. A small plant can be built on 2.5-3-cottah plot and Rs 15 lakh can be invested for buying machines. Each plant can recycle 310 kg biodegradable waste into fertilizer a day,” said a KMC solid waste management official.
According to Debabrata Majumdar, MMiC overseeing the KMC solid waste management department, they decided to build the small plants in neighbourhoods after introducing segregation of waste at household-level in 20 wards. “It is easy to utilize the segregated wastes to convert into fertilizer at the ward level itself. This will not only ensure less transportation costs but will also take the load off Dhapa, which is chocking under refuse from 144 wards in Kolkata,” he said, adding the civic body hoped to inaugurate the first four plants by another six months.
The civic body has plans to replace handcarts with battery-operated vans to transport organic waste. “With battery-driven vans, we will be able to take more garbage to the compost plants than a handcart can carry,” said a KMC official. At present, civic workers collect segregated garbage from Chetla, Bijoygarh, Garia, Patuli and Jadavpur areas and take biodegradable waste, like fruit, vegetable and paper, to a compost plant at Dhapa.
In Bidhannagar, the civic authorities will soon float tenders to engage an agency that will build 10 organic waste-to-compost units in Salt Lake. “About 1,500 sq ft of area will be required for each unit. The idea is to recycle biodegradable waste into compost,” said a civic official, adding household waste segregation has already started in Salt Lake, garbage from where is no longer dumped at Mollar Bheri. Two units are in operation in neighbouring New Town.
Source: Times of India