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Fruit & Vegetable Waste is wealth ?
Dr Raja Muzaffar Bhat11/21/2017 10:43:47 PM
Few months back Early Times had carried a news-report on dumping of organic waste by Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) at Achan Landfill site. According to the article tons of bio degradable waste generated at Parimpora Fruit / Vegetable mandi in Srinagar is lifted by SMC vehicles on daily basis and instead to processing this waste , authorities are allegedly carrying it to landfill site. I had also written a piece on a similar issue last year. I won't only blame SMC for this unscientific activity but the Jammu Municipal Corporation (JMC) is also involved in a similar activity after lifting organic waste from Narwal mandi.
Few years back during the apple harvest time I visited Parimpora fruit mandi in Srinagar . Heaps of rotten fruit and vegetables were emitting a pungent smell. I saw some men probably from Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) loading this waste inside a lorry . The vehicle was already carrying a huge quantity of polythene and all kinds of non bio degradable waste. When I saw all the rotten fruit and vegetables being loaded into the truck along with plastic waste I got bit irritated. The officials from municipality present near the lorry had no idea about waste segregation . Even the shopkeepers around the mandi were unaware about processing of the organic waste and in-fact they were happy that after so many days SMC vehicle had come to the area to lift the rotten fruit and vegetables.
Waste 2 Wealth :
From last few years I have been writing rigorously on waste management. From last 2 years I have written almost 50 columns on Solid Waste Management only . We should know that the waste generated in our orchards , restaurants , kitchens , gardens etc is biodegradable (organic) in nature and the same gets decomposed within days or weeks. The only thing we have to ensure is that it should not be mixed with the dry waste particularly the non biodegradable waste like polythene , plastic , chips wrappers , sanitary napkins etc. We need to keep one thing in mind that waste is wealth provided it is treated properly. The biodegradable / organic waste is much precious , but due to our negligence and lack of knowledge we are destroying it , by dumping it either at landfill sites or here and there .
The collection, transportation and disposal of the waste from the fruit / vegetable markets in Jammu , Srinagar and other mandis of state is a huge problem. Improper waste management in Jammu , Srinagar and other towns may lead to public health problems in the near future . The current mode of treatment used for the fruit and vegetable waste from the mandis is to collect the waste in municipal vehicles and to transport it to the garbage dumping sites . Heaps of such waste are spread all over the market places & remains uncollected for days together. It starts rotting at the same place and emits very bad smell. During collection and transportation process the biodegradable / organic waste gets mixed with Non-biodegradable waste, creating problems during its treatment. At the garbage dumping sites odour nuisance is caused from gaseous decomposition. This also leads to methane gas migration which has very bad effects on health and environment.
Tailpiece :
To convert waste into wealth the managements of Narwal and Parimpora fruit / vegetable mandis in Jammu and Srinagar should immediately construct compost pits , purchase mechanical composters and other equipments so that all the biodegradable waste (rotten vegetables / fruits) are treated scientifically inside these mandis . They will not only get rid of waste, and pungent smell but will earn lot of revenue as well from the sale of organic fertilizer (compost) that will be manufactured locally inside these mandis . The work load on Municipal Corporations of Jammu / Srinagar will also get reduced . Pertinent to mention that Municipal Solid Waste Rules of 2016 also gives a special thrust on source segregation of waste. I hope Horticulture Minister will give a serious thought to my humble submission as he has control over Parimpora / Narwal fruit and vegetable mandis.
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