The Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) might be clueless about what to do with the City’s garbage, but an eco-friendly solution in its backyard in Yelahanka has shown that the Palike can not only overcome the problem but also use the trash to meet the energy needs.
A waste disposal firm, Mailhem Ikos Environment Pvt Ltd, has set up a waste-to-energy plant of five-tonne capacity with the BBMP’s help. The Rs one- crore project generates 450-480 units of electricity every day, powering 25 streetlights at MS Palya in Kuvempunagar ward. The firm uses its patented indigenous technology which converts wet waste into methane gas through biomethanation process.
The waste coming to the plant is segregated, weighed, shredded and then let into the inlet chamber. From the inlet chamber, slurry is pumped into bio-digester, the vice president of the firm, Col K C Achappa, said. The process requires about 5,000 litres of water daily, which is recycled, he added.
The gas generated from the digester gets collected in a gas holder and then passed through the scrubber for enrichment. The gas is later fired into the biogas generator for producing electricity. Undigested slurry which settles down at the bottom of the digester is being removed periodically and is utilised as good organic manure.
Achappa explained: “The key feature of our plant is Anaerobic digester, which works on the principles of modified up flow anaerobic sludge blanket. Digester is made up of RCC tank with gas tight top cover. It is equipped with internal proprietary modules, which ensure separation of gas, liquid and sludge.”
Inspired by the success, the Palike is contemplating increasing the capacity and lighting up more lamps in the area. The same firm has almost completed its waste-to-energy plant at Mattikere, Gandhinagar and Freedom Park.
The Palike has also assigned another firm Ashoka Biogreen Private Limited to set up 13 more waste-to-energy projects at different locations, including in KR Market and Jayanagar.
Solution at ward level
According to Palike sources, about Rs 300 crore is spent mainly on transportation of waste to various landfill sites. But if each ward has such waste-to-energy plants, it can reduce the transportation cost by almost half.
Col Achappa said: “All that is required to set up a unit like ours is 4,000-5,000 sq ft of space and minimum investment of Rs one crore.
“There are many hotels, vegetable markets, super markets, apartment complexes and party halls which can supply wet-waste or bio-waste to such waste disposal units. It will not only produce electricity but also valuable organic manure to enrich soil in the BBMP parks and gardens.”
He also emphasised the segregation of waste at source, which can support such waste-to-energy plants at the ward level.