Plastic bags will be emptied in the first stage

A new machine to be installed at the solid waste compost plant yard at Pachchanady is expected to considerably reduce the foul smell emanating from the yard.

Unique Waste Processing Company Ltd., which is operating and managing the plant for the Mangalore City Corporation, would install a pre-garbage (solid waste) sorting machine at the yard before the end of February, said an MCC official.

Now, the garbage collected from the city is first dumped into heaps at the yard for making compost.

It is transferred to a sorting machine after 35 to 45 days of decomposing process for separating plastic materials and metals. In this decomposing process, the waste in plastic bags is not decomposed causing foul smell. Such “mouth-tied” plastic bags are a major hurdle in the separation process, with many remaining as they are.

The new machine, according to Manjunath R. Shetty, an Environment Engineer at the corporation, separates plastic bags, other plastic materials, metals etc. in the first stage itself as garbage collected daily is transferred to the plant.

It has a tool which pierces plastic bags and empties them thereby eliminating the mouth-tied bags. A magnetic separator picks up metals.

The advantage of the machine is that about 30 per cent of the solid waste (such as plastic materials and metals) gets separated in the first stage itself.

The inert materials such as metals could be directly transferred and dumped in the nearby sanitary landfill site. Plastic materials could be picked up by recyclers.

He said that the number of days for decomposing would remain be the same. The decomposed garbage would be again processed in the existing machine.

The official said that once the new machine was installed, metals would be being picked up by magnetic separators at two ends of processing.

It would help to produce quality compost.

In addition, height of heaps and quantity of garbage at the plant yard would come down. The new machine would cost about Rs. 40 lakh, he said.

A company official said that the new machine could process 40 tonnes of garbage an hour and 240 tonnes in eight hours.

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