Kathmandu, July 27
Kathmandu Metropolitan City is planning to set up community composting facilities in various parts of the city to manage solid waste. It has urged the public to develop a habit of waste segregation at their homes.
Encouraged by the community’s participation in Dallu Awas, KMC has planned to establish compost facilities in other locations as well.
KMC has been supporting the community in Dallu Awas to convert house waste into compost for the past couple of years.
Over 50 households in the area have been collecting waste for the purpose.
“We are working to identify locations where we can set up compost plants,” Spokesperson of KMC Ishwor Man Dangol said. He added that KMC would also launch awareness programmes on waste segregation in households.
Composting facilities can only process biodegradable waste, which needs to be segregated at the source of its origin.
“We want people to develop a habit of segregating waste at their homes before they hand over the waste to garbage collectors,” Dangol said.
It is common practice for people to collect all sorts of wastes in a single plastic bag. But, such practice only adds to the waste management problem.
Environmentalist Dhiraj Pradhananga said 90 per cent of household waste does not have to reach the landfill site if segregation is carried out at the very source (households).
“Among all household waste, about 60 per cent of waste comprises bio-degradable substances generated from kitchens which can easily be turned into compost without much effort and with low investment,” said Pradhananga.
The remaining 30 per cent household waste is recyclable, which can be easily sold after recycling.
If segregation is done properly, only 10 per cent of household waste needs to be dumped in landfill sites.
The government is working to construct a landfill site at Banchare Danda in Nuwakot district, some 28 kilometres away from Kathmandu.
However, if waste segregation is not done at the source itself, then the new landfill site will also be filled soon.
Hari Kunwar Shrestha, head of Environment Department at KMC said although the landfill site in Banchare Danda is said to last for 50 years, we don’t know if that is a fact.
“With our new campaign to encourage people to segregate waste originating from their kitchens and living rooms, we can assure that Banchare Danda landfill site will last for 100 years,” said Shrestha.
“To achieve this goal, we will establish composting facilities and buy biodegradable waste from people, and generate revenue by selling it.”
It is estimated that an average of 1,000 metric tonnes of waste is generated from Kathmandu valley on a daily basis.
KMC alone generates 350 metric tonnes of waste.
A version of this article appears in print on July 28, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.
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