Mumbai: BMC encourages residents to turn garbage into manure

At a time when the country's richest civic body Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) is struggling to find more space for dumping the garbage, a small municipal council in neighbouring Thane district is experimenting with organic way to tackle the problem.

Vice president of Kulgaon-Badlapur municipal council Shridhar Patil told reporters today that the civic body is undertaking a pilot project where the residents are given waste baskets with a culture which decomposes garbage quickly.

The end-product of decomposition process produces fertiliser which can be used in terrace gardens.

In the pilot project, waste baskets have been distributed to 250 families.

Patil said he was inspired by the work done in this regard by Sharad Kale, a scientist with the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR).

"Though our civic body is small compared to other civic bodies in the region, the problem of garbage disposal has already become a headache as no one wants dumping ground in one's backyard," he said.

But for the new experiment to succeed, the people must learn to segregate the garbage into 'solid' and 'wet'.

"All that people have to do is to put kitchen waste, like vegetable waste, fruit peels, used tea/coffee powder, egg shells, bones and entrails, fish scales, in the basket. The culture in the basket transforms it into organic manure."

Those participating in the project will get a Rs 300 rebate on the house tax by way of incentive, he said. In Mumbai, the corporation is finding it difficult to set up new dumping grounds as the existing once are saturated.

Fires in one of these dumping sites earlier this month led to thick smog enveloping the eastern suburbs.

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