Chennai

Where the kitchen powers streetlights

About 10 tonnes of kitchen waste is collected every day from over 90,000 households—Photo: M. Vedhan  

For years, garbage including kitchen wastes generated from households in Avadi has been dumped at a landfill site.

To put a permanent end to this, the municipality – among the largest local bodies in the city suburbs – began an attempt to convert kitchen waste into electricity at its biomethane plant in Sekkadu, a farming village.

From about 90,000 households, about 140 tonnes of garbage is generated in the municipality every day and 10 tonnes of it is kitchen waste, officials said. At present, a series of trials at the plant have been undertaken by the local body to ensure the maximum output of the facility. Separate bins have been provided to houses, hotels and Amma canteens in the neighbourhood to collect vegetable wastes, the main raw material used in the plant, officials elaborated.

The plant has a total capacity to handle five tonnes a day and it is now being fed with three tonnes. For every five tonnes, around 450 kilowatt of electricity can be generated. One kilowatt of electricity can illuminate four 40-watt street lights. “If we use the garbage instead of dumping it in the neighbourhood, it will benefit residents in the long run,” said S.M. Nazer, chairman, Avadi municipality.

Under the State government-funded Integrated Urban Development Mission (IUDM), the bio-methane plant was built on a one-acre plot in January 2014 at a cost Rs 90 lakh. Biomethane gas from the plant is converted into electricity and supplied to run public facilities such as primary health care (PHC), shelter for homeless, toilet blocks and the dump yard. Three cylinders will be filled with biomethane gas produced from the plant and used at the Amma canteen in Avadi. The plant will be run to its full capacity next month, said municipal commissioner, C.Mathevannan.

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Printable version | Nov 29, 2020 5:06:30 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/where-the-kitchen-powers-streetlights/article7728345.ece

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