The ‘Kidagamparambu model’ of waste management could be the answer to the growing garbage menace in the State.

Over 100 biogas plants have been set up in Kidagamparambu ward comprising 850 houses. Nearly 300 houses are treating waste at the source, with each biogas plant capable of treating the waste generated in five houses. The plant produces biogas which can be used as fuel for cooking, saving plant owners the money spent on buying cooking gas. The initiative with the slogan, ‘Clean house, clean city’ was conceptualised by T.M. Thomas Isaac, MLA.

K. Babu, municipal councillor of Kidagamparambu ward, said “Out of the 100 biogas plants, 80 have been installed by Agency for Non-Conventional Energy and Rural Technology (ANERT) at a subsidised price of Rs.17,500. The subsidy is Rs.8,000. The plants produce biogas for nearly three hours daily. The remaining 20 are portable plants from Integrated Rural Technology Centre (IRTC), Palakkad. These plants cost Rs.13,500 with 50 per cent subsidy and produce biogas up to one and a half hours daily.”

Mr. Babu said the plants could be fed all waste excluding onion peels (as it will always stay on the surface), squeezed lemon and squeezed tamarind (acidity will hinder the process of gas formation). The slurry produced could be used as fertiliser for plants and coconut trees. The washed and cleaned plastic waste would be given to Mari Marketing Company, Kalavur, which would convert them into plastic pellets

“A basic model includes a concrete ring, which is filled with 30 baskets of cow dung. A synthetic tank is placed above the ring. The waste is fed to a separate structure, which is connected to the concrete ring,” Mr. Babu said.

With the fund provided under the MLA fund of Mr. Isaac, there is a plan to set up 10 community biogas plants. Mr. Isaac has promised to provide Rs.5 lakh (Rs.5,000 for each plant) to set up biogas plants at aganawadis, government schools and hotels.

V. Mohandas, president of Nalambalam Resident Association and AITUC district secretary, who became the 100th owner of a biogas plant said if community biogas plants were set up then a single pipe connection could provide biogas to a row of houses. Mr. Babu said there were plans to replicate the model in 10 wards of Alappuzha Municipality.

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