In a step towards better waste management and to reduce the load on Mumbai’s dumping grounds, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has planned to set up small-scale waste processing plants across the city, and has invited expressions of interest for the project.
“These plants will help process the waste in small quantities of five, seven and 10 tonnes a day. We are yet to finalise the technology that will be used. This will be considered after we get responses,” said Minesh Pimple, deputy chief engineer, solid waste management (projects).
However, if these plants are to be effective, citizens will have to segregate waste at home, officials said. “We are trying to find a solution for the solid waste mess in the city and this is just one step towards it. Citizens will need to segregate waste, so that the plants are used effectively,” an official said.
For decades, the civic body has been battling the tonnes of garbage generated by the city. Mumbai’s two main dumping grounds — at Mulund and Deonar — can hold no more waste, and till date, not a single tonne of waste has been processed (see box).
The civic body had also planned to set up a plant at Deonar that can convert 1,000 tonne of garbage to energy every day. This project too is yet to materialise.
“Until the waste-to-energy plant is set up, we have planned to use the decentralisation plants at six locations across the city and the eastern and western suburbs. This will reduce transportation costs, as lesser garbage will have to be taken to the dumping grounds,” Pimple said.
One challenge for the department, sources said, is finding enough space for the small plants.
“Each plant needs around 5,000 to 10,000sqft. Ideally, each ward must have at least two such processing plants, but we are not finding enough space. We are looking at other departments for the land,” said the official quoted earlier.