First biodegradable waste processing unit in a shambles

The first biodegradable waste processing unit set up in Kurnadu Gram Panchayat in Mudipu is in shambles due to the apathy of the authorities.

The unit, started to convert waste into manure, is crying for attention as all garbage is being dumped beside the unit. The walls of the unit have been damaged.

The garbage collected is just bundled in plastic cover and kept in the unit without disposing it of scientifically. Heaps of garbage are being dumped indiscriminately beside the bio waste units beside the road. In the absence of a proper system to collect the waste, residents dump it on roads as dogs and cattle squatter upon the waste and also consume it.

Also, debris from buildings and waste from hotels are dumped beside the road. It  leads to environmental issues as well, feel the residents.

The bio waste processing unit at Mudipu was set up on 20 cents land at a cost about Rs 2.5 lakh. In this, Rs 2 lakh was granted by the Dakshina Kannada Zilla Panchayat and 50,000 was mobilised by the Panchayat itself. The unit, inaugurated on October 2, 2010, was supposed to segregate the waste collected into biodegradable and non-biodegradable waste.

The biodegradable waste was supposed to be sprayed with a microbial solution called OS1, a cocktail of five types of bacteria which convert the waste into odourless and nutrient-rich compost within 45 days. Initially, the unit was generating compost. However over a period of time, it stopped functioning due to lack of maintenance.

Soon after the inauguration of the unit, it was decided to collect garbage from 250 shops and households in the Panchayat.  It was planned to produce 200 kg manure from every tonne of waste collected.

Jana Shikshana Trust directors Sheena Shetty and Krishna Moolya Sai, “The condition of the unit has worsened even after a huge awareness rally was organised recently to create awareness on segregation of garbage. The unit is situated on very close to a primary school. With the failure to dispose of garbage scientifically, it is posing a health hazard for the students as well as people in the area. The Zilla Panchayat should initiate action to improve the maintenance of the unit.”

Moreover, the Zilla Panchayat should conduct a reality check on the condition of biodegradable waste processing units set up in different parts of the district, they demanded.

Zilla Panchayat Member Mamatha Gatti, who represents Kurnadu constituency, said “There are plans to segregate the waste at source and collect it in the constituency. I have already held one round of meeting with the shopkeepers and some residents. In spite of creating awareness among the general public on segregating the waste at source, the dumping of the garbage continues. The garbage from the site was cleaned recently. Still the garbage is dumped indiscriminately.”

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