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BARC expertise for waste disposal

According to reports, Madurai is all set to adopt Nisargruna, a solid waste management technology devised by Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC), to convert biodegradable waste collected from households in rural areas into methane and organic manure.

The District Rural Development Agency (DRDA) has begun the process of identifying sites for establishing Nisargruna biogas plants. The DRDA and BARC officials inspected sites at Othakadai, Samayanallur, A. Kokkulam and Thanaklankulam village panchayats.

According to Collector L. Subramanian, who is the chairman of District Solid and Liquid Waste Management Committee, Nisargruna biomethanation technology will yield about 50 kg of organic manure and two cylinders of methane gas for every tonne of biodegradable waste.

J. Daniel Chellappa, senior scientist from Technical Coordination Wing of BARC, conducted a brainstorming session with Block Development Officers, Agriculture Department officials, women self-help group members and panchayat presidents. The modalities of door-to-door garbage collection, segregation of bio-degradable and non-degradable waste at source and operation of Nisargruna plants were discussed in detail at the session held on October 10.

Additional Collector (Development) G.K. Arun Sundar Dayalan said the DRDA had chosen Nisargruna technology for ensuring litter-free panchayats as it was more effective than the traditional biogas plants functioning at a few villages. “The technology developed by BARC considerably reduces the time taken for creation of organic manure and also increases the amount of methane gas produced as a by-product. It will cost about Rs.20 lakh to establish a one-tonne plant on a 400-sq.ft site,” he said.

He said the proposal to establish Nisargruna plants in Madurai would be sent to the State government for approval. “It will take around four months to construct a plant and we can expect the works to begin by January,” he added.

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