Chennai

City’s waste to provide manure for 30,000 acres of farmland

Civic body ties up with start-ups to promote organic farming

The Chennai Corporation has become the first local body in the country to provide organic manure to farmers.

Corporation Commissioner G. Prakash on Monday launched the project to supply manure generated from the city’s biodegradable solid waste to support organic farming on 30,000 acres of land, in the first phase. The civic body has started composting 500 tonnes of biodegradable waste a day, generating manure.

“The Greater Chennai Corporation has tied up with start-ups in urban organic farming and farmer-producer organisations of Tiruvallur district to realise large-scale organic farming using quality compost produced in the city at very low cost. Our aim is to turn 30,000 acres of farmland in Tiruvallur district organic,” said Mr. Prakash. “Private companies are welcome to utilise our compost for such purposes,” he added.

The city has been generating 5,000 tonnes of municipal solid waste every day. The waste is sent to dumpyards in Kodungaiyur and Perungudi, polluting residential neighbourhoods in the vicinity.

Residents’ movement

Owing to pollution of the dumpyards, including the eco-sensitive Pallikaranai marshland, and protests by residents, civil society members, led by actor R. Parthiban, started a project a few years ago, visiting the Ripon Buildings in August 2015 and conducting brainstorming sessions on how to use biodegradable waste to generate organic manure for farmers on the city’s outskirts.

Reacting to the Corporation’s decision, Mr. Parthiban said the civic body should try to provide organic manure free of cost.

“Members of the civil society who participated in the movement in 2015 had agreed to mobilise resources to transport organic manure for free. We had the support of various agencies who were ready to provide at least 100 vehicles for transporting the manure,” he said.

The Corporation is planning to generate organic manure from its biodegradable solid waste at decentralised micro composting centres at 700 parks in the city. The two dumpyards in the city will be closed by December 2020, after successful implementation of the project.

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Printable version | Jul 7, 2020 7:14:47 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/citys-waste-to-provide-manure-for-30000-acres-of-farmland/article30080657.ece

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