Avadi Corporation aims to manage waste sustainably

Residents demand better door to door collection

Avadi Municipal Corporation plans to reclaim its dump yard in Sekkadu and find a sustainable solution to the garbage issue in a year’s time.

Like many local bodies, the Avadi Corporation too was fast running out of space to dump its waste in Sekkadu, located 10 km away from Avadi. In a bid to re-mediate the dumpsite, the civic body has accelerated initiatives and awareness campaign to turn Avadi into a zero-waste locality.

On an average, the Corporation generates 90.71 metric tonnes of garbage daily. The quantity of waste dumped in Sekkadu site has reduced by 60% in the past few months as the Corporation has implemented bio-mining project in the dump yard with the technical assistance of Anna University, officials said.

Officials of the Corporation said bio-mining is a process used for segregation of useful materials from mounds of garbage. Wet waste is composted in the 17 micro composting units set up across 48 wards. While the manure is provided to local farmers free of cost, recyclable waste is sold and revenue is shared by sanitary workers.

“We have removed 13,000 cubic metre of waste from the dump site since April through bio-mining process. Spread over nearly 10 acres, the yard has nearly 64,174 cubic metre of waste to be cleared for land reclamation,” said an official.

Besides composting waste, the materials with a thickness of above 6 mm is used for filling purpose. The Corporation has tied up with Dalmia cements to transport items such as old clothes, tyres and plastics as raw materials to produce refuse derived fuel.

Challenges remain

The Corporation continue to face challenges in source segregation and tackling dry and non-saleable plastic, which contributes to nearly 30% of the waste generated.

Residents of some areas complain that the Corporation also needs to focus on the issues at grassroots level for better solid waste management. Though the corporation was engaged in zero waste efforts, door to door garbage collection was still poor, they said.

K.Bhakthavatsalam, resident of Muthapudupet said that waste is collected once in three days and interior roads are not cleaned. Not many are aware of source segregation in the area, he adds.

While the Corporation wants to turn Avadi into a bin-free locality, residents note that the erratic door to door collection and absence of bins lead to throwing of waste in public spaces and stormwater drains.

T.Sadagopan, president, Tamil Nadu Progressive Consumer Centre, Pattabiram, said, "Garbage is collected from residents once in two or three days. Vendors find it convenient to dump garbage in vacant sites in places such as Chatram and Kamarajpuram. Access roads to railway stations also act as makeshift dump sites."

N.Ravichandran, Avadi Municipal Corporation Commissioner, said, “We have proposed to set up waste incinerator at a cost of Rs.1 crore to burn dry waste in safe way. Nearly 90% of the Corporation has been covered with door-to-door collection. Moreover, plogging initiative is being taken up every Saturday to encourage residents to keep their neighbourhood clean.”

On the challenges, Mr.Ravichandran said “We plan to instruct bulk waste generators to deal with their waste and link them to vendors for recycling waste. As a first step to encourage home composting and reduce wet waste generation, we are planning to give cycles as prizes to children who compost at home.”

The Corporation plans to use the land reclaimed for creating garden or creating forest using Japanese Miyawaki method of tree plantation, he added.

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