Arrangements made to collect plastics from students too

From next week, Wednesdays will be plastic collection day in the city. Every Wednesday conservancy staff on tricycles, who collect door-to-door garbage, will specifically ask for plastic waste, especially thin carry bags and covers in which commodities such as pulses and condiments are packaged, for use in laying roads.

“We have also made arrangements to collect plastics from students of Chennai Schools and private schools. A few private schools, including Velammal group and Alpha group have already agreed to create awareness among their students and ask them to bring plastics that civic body conservancy staff would collect on Wednesdays. We want 100 tonnes of plastic every week,” said a senior official.

S.Alfred Devaprasad, president, Alpha Group of Institutions said: “School and college students are going to be a part of this. We are coining slogans and be putting up posters in our institutions. After eight weeks prizes would be given to classes that collect the largest quantity of plastic,” he said.

M.V.M.Velmurugan, CEO, Velammal Educational Trust said: “Children would come forward willingly to participate and bring in plastic waste in large amounts if the purpose is explained properly to them. It is in the interest of the environment and the society. Our trust's 10 schools would take the responsibility of collecting plastics from 30 neighbouring schools,” he said.

Having set a target of 800 tonnes of plastic material to lay 370 km of roads at a cost of Rs.110 crore, the Corporation is looking at various options, including collecting plastic waste from manufacturers. Around 8-10 per cent of shredded plastic is blended with the bitumen to lay roads.

Of the 78 km of bus route roads and 292 km of interior roads, the Corporation has so far laid 6 km of BRR and 11 km of interior roads due to unavailability of plastic.

Though the civic body had floated tenders for plastic wastes, sources said that it was not happy with the response.

“Each time the participating companies seem to be quoting higher rates for shredded plastics. So instead we are trying to make the residents give plastic waste that they usually throw away. We are getting shredders for every zone so that the plastic could be made into pellets at the zonal level itself,” the official said.

Residents who have large amount of plastics can also send email to plasticwaste@chennaicorporation.gov.in. The civic body is also taking across the message through audio recordings being played out on loud speakers fixed on autorickshaws.

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Deepa H. RamakrishnanJune 28, 2012

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