Sunday, March 07, 2010

GREENIZENS GET GOING

GREENIZENS GET GOING
Bengaluru,


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With BBMP failing to implement door-to-door garbage collection and waste piling on the city’s streets, Bengalureans have taken it upon themselves to keep their localities clean.

From distributing dustbins to ensuring that garbage is segregated, people in the city have decided that they will make Bengaluru dirt-free and green, reports Chandrashekar G.

While the city’s population has increased over the years and its garbage is spilling out on the streets, civic agencies have few ideas on getting rid of the waste in ways that are both scientific and easy to implement.
As a result, even today Bengaluru has only three scientific landfills, at Mavallipura, Mandur and Doddaballapur. This despite the fact that the Supreme Court had directed all civic bodies to establish scientific landfills by December 31, 2003. The 3,200-odd metric tonnes of garbage produced by the city is presently either dumped on vacant land or in stone quarries on the out- skirts, raising a stink and putting at risk the health of all those living nearby.

While BBMP goes about its daily business, taking no notice of the heaps of garbage on the roadsides, in some localities people have taken it upon themselves to get rid of the stinking filth in their midst and are going about it both scientifically and in ways that are proving very effective in keeping their areas clean.

The Malleswaram Swabhi- mana Initiative, Citizen Forum, Yelahanka New Town and Kumara Park West Residents’ Welfare Association are making a huge contribution to keep- ing the city clean by not only creating awareness about proper garbage dis-

posal, but also encouraging people to convert it into compost, so that less of it is ferried to the outskirts to be dumped. All the three RWAs are collaborating with ITC, which collects the garbage from them every week and sends it to a recycling unit. The company pays Rs 3 a kg for plastic waste and Rs 2 a kg for waste paper. Members of these associations make sure that the garbage is segregated into paper and wet waste.
Meenakshi Bharath, a member of the Malleswaram Swabhimana Initiative, says two bins are distributed to segregate their garbage.
Leftover food is converted into compost for use in gardens, she explains.

N.S. Ramakanth, ex-president of Kumara Park West Residents' Welfare Associ ation, has helped around 4,500 households in Kumara Park to make the area a zerogarbage zone. Three to four tonnes of wet garbage are collected from Kumara Park and daily converted into compost. The plastic is recycled by KK Plastics, which uses it in asphalting arterial roads, he explains.

The work of these ordinary people has helped reduce garbage by at least 50 per cent in Malleswaram, Seshadripuram, Kumara Park and Yelahanka New Town.

Sadly, however, BBMP itself doesn't seem to be taking a cue from them and converting the garbage it collects into compost for use as manure in parks, which would not only keep the roads clean but also make the city a greener place to live in.

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