Coimbatore Corporation to approach TNAU to manage waste generated in city

After having invested men and resources in solid waste management, the Coimbatore Corporation has now undertaken a study to assess types of waste and a pattern in generation.   | Photo Credit: S. SIVA SARAVANAN

After it saw an increase in the quantity of waste generated in the city, the Coimbatore Corporation has decided to approach Tamil Nadu Agricultural University to study the waste generated in the city.

In the past few weeks, the quantity of waste that the Corporation collected had crossed 1,000 tonnes a day and touched 1,100 tonnes. This increase of 200 to 250 tonnes had forced the Corporation to seek solution and a scientific one at that and therefore the decision to move the TNAU, said a senior officer.

The Corporation and the University had had an informal meeting with the former explaining what it was looking for and the latter sharing what it could offer.

After this preliminary discussion, the TNAU had asked the Corporation for a formal letter stating its requirements so that it could study the requirements, decide on the resources it would have to devote for the work and assess the cost involved, said a Corporation officer.

The Corporation was looking for details on the composition of waste – the quantity of organic waste, the quantity of different types of inorganic, recyclable waste – papers and their types, plastic covers and their types, their calorific value, patterns in the quantity of waste generated – weekends, start of months and a few more parameters, and geography-wise details.

The objective was to have clear answers to the ‘what’ – the types of waste materials, when and where so that the Corporation could devise the ‘how’ (to manage the solid waste) part of the equation, the officer added.

And, if the Corporation were to get definitive answers, it would help devise projects and know where to invest – say, in organic waste if the quantity was more or in recycling plastic waste if recyclable plastic waste formed a significant portion of dry waste and if the waste had high calorific content, take steps in those directions.

But the Corporation’s move to study the waste after having invested ₹ 100 crore under the JNNURM scheme and several more crores under various schemes to buy push carts, more bins, more vehicles, construct micro compost centres or dry resource hubs without studying which locality or ward or zone generated more or the types of waste was a classic case of putting the cart before the house, said a Corporation insider.

That the Corporation had chosen to make the investment first and the study latter showed how serious it was about solid waste management and also lack of vision.

But it was a consolation that the Corporation had chosen to conduct a study at least now so that it could plan its investments in the future.

More vehicles to collect waste

Meanwhile, the Corporation had convinced the State government to sanction funds for more autorickshaws to strengthen door-to-door waste collection.

Sources said the government had approved of the demand for 57 small goods carriers to be used in door-to-door collection of wet waste.

This was in addition to the 102 vehicles that the government had sanctioned sometime ago. This would take the total vehicles that the city would have in a short time to 209. But this was not enough as a city of Coimbatore’s size and population needed at least 100 more.

The objective was to have at least three to four vehicles a ward so that the Corporation had a robust door-to-door collection system in place.

The vehicles would collect waste from households and small eateries to take those directly to micro compost centres, where it would be turned manure, the sources added.

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Printable version | Mar 3, 2021 8:03:03 AM |

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