CHENNAI: Valasaravakkam has found a way to do away with their wet waste without spending a rupee on waste management infrastructure. A private company will soon pick up wet waste from four pick-up points in the zone and take it to their bio-CNG plant to process it later. The Greater Chennai Corporation is expected to save over Rs 20 lakh on diesel and also prevent the waste from entering landfills without spending money on construction of compost yards.
Valasaravakkam zone, which has 96,000 households, generates an average waste of 190 to 205 metric tonnes (MT) per day, of which at least 85 MT is wet waste. “In the beginning of the year, the zone was generating 240 MT of waste and we could process 30 MT of wet waste through four composting yards in the zone and mulch pits. Yet, 80 MT of wet waste still ends up in the landfills. This project means we can get rid of the stench economically while providing employment opportunity to a lot of private players,” said the concerned GCC official at Valasaravakkam.
The official added that currently they are being paid Rs 28 lakh per month as diesel allowance. The costs can be brought down to Rs 8-Rs 10 lakh once this begins. “GCC workmen will segregate waste and leave wet waste at four pick-up points in the zone, after which the private player will transport it to their bio-CNG plant in Thirumazhisai, 15 km from Valasaravakkam.”
However, the public suggest that the civic body must have a self-sufficient infrastructure. “If the private player suddenly cancels the MoU and refuses to pick up waste, it will yet again end up in the landfills. The ultimate solution is only for the civic body to construct their own infrastructure. This is a great temporary solution,” said Pradeep V, a long-time resident of Madipakkam.
GCC is inviting entrepreneurs for a similar exercise in other parts of the city. “Anybody with a piece of land in and around the city, and is ready to take up a venture, can approach the Corporation. Though the investment to set up a 50-tonne biogas unit is about Rs 8 crore, the return on investment is only three years. We want to expand this model to the whole city. It helps in creating a win-win situation, both for GCC and the private players,” said G Prakash, Chennai Corporation Commissioner.
Valasaravakkam zone has a population of 4,50,000 people with 96,000 households. It generates 190 to 205 metric tonnes of waste per day.