Ecoparks as a Model of Sustainable Solid Waste Management
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Municipal solid waste is an unavoidable consequence of human civilization and has to be effectively and efficiently managed. Improper management of MSW poses potential risks to environment and public health. Tirupati is a world famous place of pilgrimage in the state of Andhra Pradesh and has a residential population of around 400,000. Nearly 60,000–80,000 pilgrims arrive at Tirupati per day from different parts of India and abroad to have a Darshan of Lord Venkateswara. Status of solid waste management in Tirupati town is far from satisfactory. Mode of collection of solid waste is mixed; a combination of house to house collection and hauled container system. Nearly 219 t of MSW is collected and transported in tractor trailers, Compactors, Autos, dumper placers and tippers to a disposal site located 18 km away where solid waste is disposed by open dumping without any scientific method of disposal and technical supervision. Improper disposal of solid waste in open dumps poses pollution of water, soil and air environments. Some wastes are being composted at Tukivakam and three onsite In-vessel composting. Analysis of municipal solid waste indicates that major portion of the waste comprises of compostable matter (TCM 68%) and therefore composting of solid waste after segregation is suggested as an appropriate method of solid waste processing. Vermicomposting appears to be a better method of composting biodegradable organic fractions in Municipal Solid Waste. To offset the cost of transportation of solid waste to compost yard and compost to market yards decentralized composting is suggested. A novel method of “Compost Parks” are suggested as a means of decentralization wherein vacant spaces in public places within the limits of ULBs such as parks, educational institutions, hospitals, etc. are suggested to be used as composting yards. MSW within the close vicinity of such spaces can be brought and biodegradable fraction subjected to composting in appropriately designed compost pits and the remaining fraction is transported to the transfer station for subsequent disposal. The composted material can be used for gardening/lawns in the same park or even may be sold/marketed easily. In the present case study of Tirupati, a model of Eco Park designed for 1000 kg/day of TCM. For adopting the vermicomposting at this park, four number of compost pits each of size 25 × 2.00 × 1.00 m are required. The quantity of compost that can be obtained is 650 kg/day and at a least cost of Rs. 10/kg, revenue obtained by this would be Rs. 6500/day. The gardeners employed in the park may be assigned the works related to composting with incentives. The quantity of non-biodegradable residues that needs to be transported to disposal site is only 32% and this reduces the cost of transportation greatly. Decentralization of composting and composting in public places like parks, etc. is a good option for processing of MSW and hence deserves implementation.
KeywordsMSW TCM Eco park Biodegradable Compost
- Indian Standards: 9235-1979 “Method for Physical Analysis and Determination of Moisture in Solid wastes”, Bureau of Indian Standards, Govt. of India, New Delhi.Google Scholar
- Indian Standards: 10158-1982 “Methods of Analysis of Solid wastes (Excluding Industrial Solid wastes)”, Bureau of Indian Standards, Govt. of India, New Delhi.Google Scholar