Waste Story: BBMP’s Plan to Install Pulverisers Irks Eco-Activists
The Bengaluru civic body says turning solid waste into liquid waste and draining it in sewers will help reduce waste
As a measure to reduce the amount of solid waste being dumped in landfills, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has initiated a plan to mandatorily install pulverisers in households and hotels across Bengaluru. The idea behind the move is to convert kitchen and food waste into liquid and drain it down the sewage, so as to reduce the cost of handling and transporting household waste.
However, the move has been met with criticism from environmentalists, who warned that it could have an adverse impact on water bodies and aeration tanks. A petition opposing the measure was filed by Bengaluru Eco Club, a citizen group.
Experts Say It’ll About Clog Drains & Affect Water Bodies
Many environmentalists are of the view that the liquid waste generated after pulverisation will lead to drains getting blocked.
The current infrastructure that is in place with respect to the city’s sewage system is inadequate to support the flow of the fluid. Stagnant water and clogging of sewage can, in turn, lead to a number of health issues.Marcy Newman, of NGO Daily Dump
Non-governmental organisations and other environment activists said that the resultant trash from pulverisers can contaminate lakes and catchment areas. “Several lakes like Bellandur, Varthur and Ulsoor lake are already very polluted. There is a high chance that the liquid waste will enter these water bodies since the sewage systems do not have the capacity to handle all the small objects, random debris, and grease that might flow into it,” said Divya Tiwari, CEO, Saahas.
Composting As an Alternative
Composting has been regarded as one of the most effective ways of treating wet waste. The process ensures that organic matter is reused rather than dumped, apart from it being recycled into a useful soil amendment. “Instead of deciding to focus their resources on installing pulverisers, the BBMP could have laid emphasis on pushing households to adopt composting, which is a more constructive and cost-efficient method to treat waste,” said Tiwari.
The Civic Body’s Plan of Action
The BBMP generates about 3,000 to 3,500 tonne of solid waste every day. The civic body’s plan is to reduce the amount of garbage being dumped in landfills.
Installing pulverisers in kitchens and other hotels across Bengaluru will reduce the amount of wet waste by 2,000 tonne. The cost of handling and transporting the waste is also expected to decrease by Rs. 300 crore.Sarfaraz Khan, Joint Commissioner, BBMP
One of the main concerns raised by environmentalists is that the current sewage system does not have the capacity to handle large amounts of fluid waste.
The sewage treatment plants will be modified accordingly, said Sarfaraz Khan, Joint Commissioner, BBMP. “The system will be revamped to allow for the treatment of all the incoming wet waste. Besides, we will also work with the Indian Institute of Science to conduct a feasibility study,” he added.
Despite the opposition, the BBMP is considering the option of making pulverisers compulsory for households and hotels.
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