It is alarming that India’s metropolitan cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Kolkata cumulatively generate 10 million tonnes of garbage annually. According to the government statistics a staggering 75 per cent of India’s waste is dumped into the landfills. To reduce the garbage generation, central government introduced the ‘Compost Banao, Compost Apnao’ campaign under the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan earlier this year. The aim is to encourage conversion of biodegradable waste into compost. Inspired by the campaign, the South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) has now launched a zero-garbage initiative.
As a pilot project, the SDMC has directed residents of RK Puram to segregate garbage into dry and wet waste. The aim is to process and dispose of waste at source through composting, thereby reducing the burden on landfills. SDMC is the first civic body in northern India to introduce such an initiative in urban areas to generate organic compost.
The scheme is being implemented in four sectors (4, 5, 6 and 10) of RK Puram targeting nearly 5,000 residents. The initiative was launched last week and for the past 4-5 days the civic body has been going from door-to-door collecting the segregated waste and then dumping the area’s waste at a designated compost site, which is in sector 9 of RK Puram, for generating compost by the aerobic method, an aboveground method of decomposition.
To make people aware about the need to segregate waste, SDMC has signed a MoU with FMCG major ITC, where volunteers from the company are going door-to-door teaching people the dos and don’ts of dividing waste into categories of biodegradable and non-biodegradable waste.
After we issued the segregation guidelines, we have got a positive response from people who have assured us their whole-hearted participation in the process, said Mukesh Yadav, SDMC Director Press and Information.
Under the same initiative the SDMC plans to cut down the menace of litter due to dry leaves. “We have installed 21 shredders in South Delhi area. Once the shredders cut down the leaves, the waste generated will be converted into compost. The SDMC has deployed four auto-tippers for its collection,” added Mr Yadav.
Every day the SDMC will target to reuse atleast 2-3 tonnes of waste for composting collected from RK Puram. Based on the success of this initiative, the SDMC will propose similar models in other parts of South Delhi in the coming few months. “Areas under SDMC generate 35 tonnes of waste on a daily basis and replicating this model will certainly help in bringing down the overall waste generation,” concluded Mr. Yadav.