Bio-degradable Waste Processing For Clean Environment

What is waste?

Waste is unwanted or undesirable material left over or thrown after the completion of an Agriculture process. In other words it can also be stated that any substance or matter which the holder discards or intends to discard is waste or which is generally not used again.

“Composting” is biological decomposition of lingo-cellulosic organic material like solid wastes, press-mud etc into simple compound/ humus like end product called “compost”. The product is of value in agriculture both as an organic fertilizer and as a soil improver. is used as organic solid waste and spent wash is used for moisture control and nutrient addition. Composting technology is being used for treatment of spent wash for achiehving zero discharge since long time in distilleries. Spent wash is sprayed on windrows for moisture maintenance and nutrient addition. The major objective behind composting in distilleries is evaporating distillery effluent to achieve zero discharge.

A) Use of Bio-degradable waste in making soil Improvers or Manure:

In Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) and near river Ganga or around, there are many elements like vegetable peelings, waste eatables, offered flowers etc which are biodegradable. Other similar wastes are food waste, agriculture waste, animal dug etc. In the city or on the banks of Holy River many temples are also located. In these temples tons of flowers are offered daily. These are also biodegradable and have to be disposed off. Thus, a large volume of organic material is available from MSW or animal shelters etc. This resource can be utilized by properly composting it into a value-added end product called Soil Improvers which is of superior quality manure to feed our hungry agriculture farms. These have many nutrient / organic matters for hungry soils. The bio-degradable waste can be converted to compost by NADEP technology or Vermi Method. In short these methods are given here:

i) NADEP technology:

Adopting “NADEP technology” it converts the bio-degradable waste to organic manure. In this method a rectangular box type brick structure of about 3m length x 1.6m width x 1m height is constructed on leveled ground. The brick-work is done using plain cement sand or lime mortar. The top layers are done with little richer mix so as to give strength to structure. It may be provided with perforations in the walls all around by leaving half brick holes while doing the brick work. The floor can be lined with plain bricks or simple earth.

Figure shows the process of making compost through NADEP Technology

Waste material required for filling such size of Box includes: About 1400-1500 kg biodegradable / agricultural waste or flowers; 100-150 kg animal dung; 800 kg field soil. It is mixed well with cow dung & animal urine; water 1000-1500 liter. When all material needed is ready, the filling of tank is completed within 48 hrs by pouring the material in layers. First is 15 to 20 cm with flower or organic waste keeping it wet with water or animal urine mixture, 2nd layer with 10 kg cow dung with about 150 liter water, 3rd layer with 50-60 kg mud mixed with water like a paste? Like this 4-5 layers are poured and finally the filled tank is covered and sealed with a uniform paste of moist mud. The box top is kept moist by spraying water from time to time for about 2 – 3 months in summer time.

Approximately 5-6 ton of good manure is ready per tank in about 3 months, containing nitrogen-0.5 %’ phosphorus-0.5-0.6 %, potash- 1.2-1.4% plus all the other nutrients required for agricultural crops which is good. Besides this, NADEP compost being rich in humus also improves the physical structure of farm soils.

ii) Vermi-composting:

Vermi-composting uses earthworms to turn biodegradable or organic wastes into very high quality compost. This is one of the best ways of composting many types of wastes including flowers, kitchen and animal waste etc. For this technology, the most convenient pit or chamber is of size is 3m x 1m x 0.75m as shown in figure 2. The size and number of chambers can be changed or determined according to the volume of flower or agricultural waste mixed with animal dug. Earthworms are introduced into the loamy material / soil, which they will inhabit as their home and grow. In vermi bed of about 50 to 60 cm thick, about 200 or 1 Kg earthworms are introduced in the pit. The bedding for vermin composting system must be able to retain both moisture and air while providing a place for the worms to live. About 1 ½ to 2 tons of good manure can be ready from such pit in about 2 months.
Figure shows the process of making compost through Vermi Composting Pit

iii) Compost with “Yash Activator Plus”:

It is a Very effective microbial consortium for rapid composting.

What is Yash Activator Plus:
Yash Activator Plus is mixture of culture of micro organisms specifically developed for accelerating the composting of organic waste. It contains cultures of Bacteria and fungi along with enzymes, which facilitate bio conversion of organic waste into a stabilized end product called “compost. Use of microbial consortium for rapid composting:

The microbiology of composting is very complex. It involves consortium of fungi, bacteria and actinomycetes for bio-conversion of organic waste into end product for various uses. Microbial growth in composting depends upon so many factors. Carbon and nitrogen sources are the most critical in terms of bio-degradability of the waste/ biomass. Aeration and moisture control are the main key operating parameters for operating the windrow compost plant. Addition of specialized bio-culture consortium is proposed for increasing composting activity has great use.

Application Method:

  • Recommended dosage is 1 KG/litre per MT of organic waste.
  • 1 KG/litre of Yash Activator Plus is mixed with 10 litres of 10% jaggery/sugar/10 litre of sugarcane juice and kept overnight for the regeneration and multiplication of the microbial cultures present in Yash Activator Plus.
  • After 24 hours of incubation, add enough water to make up 100 litre and spray this solution over 1 MT of farm waste.
  • Moisture level of the heap should be maintained up to 40%. If necessary, spray water in between to maintain the moisture level.
  • Turn the heap upside down every week for proper aeration. If temperature does not rise above 60oC during the first week of heap formation, add Yash Activator Plus at the rate half the earliest dosage during first turning.
  • Under normal conditions, composing process will be complete within 4-6 weeks.

B) Kitchen Waste Manuring:

Small plastic storage containers in convenient or variety of sizes as shown in figure 3 can also be used for Vermi-composting. These containers can easily be transported to suitable locations. These can be made or casted out of waste plastic begs converted to granular as discussed earlier. These containers and method can also be used by house hold Kitchen waste to convert into manure for kitchen garden.

Similar to NADAP technology this Vermi-Composting contains more nitrogen, many times more phosphorus and potassium. They are rich in humus acids and improve the structure of soil.

Anaerobic digestion is a slow process. Here in micro organisms are used to destroy the biodegradable content. No oxygen is present during this procedure. It is used both domestically and even on a commercial level to tap the release of energy during the process and use it. Anaerobic technologies are seen as good agents to reduce the green house gases from the atmosphere and also as a worthy replacement of fossil fuels. The process works as a boon for developing countries for creating low energies for cooking and lighting in homes. Both China and India are extensively using this technology.

Project Prepared By
Dr. Y. P. Gupta, & Pramila Gupta,
Yash Krishi, Taknique Evam Vigyan Kendra, Allahabad
Email: [email protected], website –