Civic body looking for scientific solutions for garbage disposal

That the landfills on the city’s outskirts are functioning in an unscientific manner is common knowledge.

On Tuesday, Mayor D. Venkatesh Murthy and Commissioner Rajneesh Goel met experts from the Solid Waste Management Round Table and representatives of a few residents welfare associations to discuss starting dry waste collection centres, segregation and sustaining it. Both agreed to provide infrastructure facilities at these centres wherever they have been set up.

Speaking to mediapersons later, Mr. Goel admitted the landfills were functioning in an unscientific manner and said the onus lay with the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB). “The KSPCB should have monitored the functioning of these landfills and ascertained if they were adhering to the prescribed norms. However, even the BBMP has failed to do its part by not inspecting the landfills,” he said.

About eight private companies have approached the BBMP with proposals to scientifically handle 4,000 tonnes of solid waste generated in the city every day. Four companies were invited to make presentations on the scientific disposal of waste accumulated at the landfills in Mavallipura, Mandur and Terra Firma and use it to generate power or produce oil, gas. The companies presented their plans of processing up to 3,000 tonnes of garbage and maintained that they would require at least 12 months to put in place the plant and systems.

However, the BBMP will invite more companies to come forward with their RFP (request for proposal) and successful bidders through a competitive tender process will be given the contract. This is one of the long-term measures planned to handle solid waste in the city.

One of the companies claimed Japanese technology held the answer to the city’s garbage woes. The company representative claimed that they were managing over 175 waste to energy plants in Japan. The power that is generated could either be sold to Bangalore Electricity Supply Company or used by the BBMP for street lighting. He said that the company would only require around 12 acres of land, while stating that the lock-in period would have to be 30 years. The entirely computerised plant would be managed by technicians from Japan.

A representative from a Mysore-based company, that has been helping the KSPCB dispose of plastic material, said that plants with their technology had been set up abroad. The garbage (mixed) can be converted to oil, gas and carbon. The oil that is generated has high calorific value and can be used to even run diesel generation sets.

Another company stated that with 10 acres, they would be able to process around 1,000 tonnes of garbage every day. The company representative said that they had been successful in processing waste at historic landfills and capping it successfully. The residual devised fuel that is generated has good calorific value, he maintained.

A group that uses German technology to generate power from waste also put forward its proposal.

The company has recently bagged the tender to set up a plant in Udupi and could generate power even from garbage with 90 per cent moisture.

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