Students chip in for clean, green city

Macfast and municipality to implement waste management plan in Thiruvalla

February 12, 2011 08:42 pm | Updated October 10, 2016 06:45 am IST - PATHANAMTHITTA:

GREEN BRIGADE: The student volunteers with Fr Abraham Mulamoottil, at Macfast campus on Saturday.

GREEN BRIGADE: The student volunteers with Fr Abraham Mulamoottil, at Macfast campus on Saturday.

In Thiruvalla, the municipality is joining hands with an educational institution to implement a waste management scheme, estimated at Rs.150 lakh. The project, ‘Green and Clean City,' will be launched by P.J. Kurien, MP, at a function at Macfast auditorium on Sunday.

Mar Athanasios College for Advanced Studies Thiruvalla (Macfast) and the municipality will implement the project in Thiruvalla municipal limits in the next three years. “Our effort is to make Thiruvalla a model, waste-free, green, clean and healthy city through a viable, cost-effective and financially sustainable waste management system with people's participation,” says Fr. Abraham Mulamoottil, Principal of Macfast, who is the brain behind the project.

From ‘Nimby' to ‘Imby'

According to him, a drastic change is needed in the community's attitude — from ‘Not In My Backyard' (Nimby) to ‘In My Backyard' (Imby). Then the community will segregate and dispose waste at the source itself. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Refuse, Repair and Rethink is the principle of six ‘R's' constituting the basis of the project, which encourages a decentralised mechanism for waste management, generating wealth out of waste.

Fr. Mulamoottil told The Hindu that public awareness, systematic implementation, and public participation are the prerequisites for the success of the project. The mission's message is that waste is man-made and hence the onus is on each person to properly manage it too. The responsibility does not lie solely with the civic body concerned.

Green hour

Fr. Mulamoottil has a ‘green hour' every week in all educational institutions in the municipal limits to make the students and staff realise the importance of eco-friendly waste management. He already launched the scheme at Macfast a month ago, ensuring participation of the entire college.

The mission will use eco-friendly waste disposal techniques. The strategy calls for the barest minimum of waste generation, that needs to be disposed at the source itself, and ultimately ‘zero waste.' The message of waste minimisation and segregation could be spread among the public, he said, and added that implementation of concepts like bio-parks, green school, eco parks, knowledge centre, etc, in a phased manner would give more thrust to the project.

K. Sudheer, municipal secretary, said that initially the focus would be on awareness building. Proper enforcement of laws too would be ensured.

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