Cleaning Up With 'Kabadiwalla' App

In an attempt to help you find a kabadiwalla or ‘waste paper mart’ near you, a city hub of a global community has created an Android app that will help you do that.

Published: 10th February 2014 07:35 AM  |   Last Updated: 10th February 2014 07:35 AM   |  A+A-


In an attempt to help you find a kabadiwalla or ‘waste paper mart’ near you, a city hub of a global community has created an Android app that will help you do that.

Though Kabadiwalla Connect will have details and contact information of the chap in your neighbourhood, the exercise initiated by the Global Shaper Chennai hub isn’t just to connect you to a waste paper mart - it’s about putting a number on just how much recyclable waste our city is throwing into garbage bins.

“In Chennai, we estimate that the per person waste generation is above 1/2 kg a day and also 68% is generated from households. The thing is, most of this ‘waste’ can be recycled or upcycled and we believe that if people can contact a kabadiwalla, this waste ouput will come down quite a bit,” said Siddharth Hande, who works with the group.

As a first phase to finding out how much waste is actually ‘up-cycled’ by the waste marts, 100 students volunteers from Sri Venkateshwara College of Engineering will be fanning out across 40 areas in Chennai and attempt to map the waste marts. “They will collect details about the waste mart, what kind of stuff they take, how much they have in general and also list contact details. This can be used to generate a number, which will be used to begin a debate on how big our trash problem is and what we’re going to do about it,” he added.

As part of the mapping drive, the student volunteers were given the ‘super-light’ app and were briefed about the project at the Gandhi Nagar club on Sunday morning. They will be going zone by zone and uploading details and pictures for future reference, from their android phones. Once the first few drives, starting February 22, are done, Global Shapers Chennai is looking at holding a seminar to discuss how large the ‘waste’ issue choking our city’s landfills, really is and then look at change measures.

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