Plastic Ban: KDMC shows the way to make fuel from plastic

Kalyan: After the Maharashtra government implemented the plastic ban on June 23, public has been grappling to find new environment friendly alternatives to use of plastic in their daily lives. One municipal corporation leads the pack. Kalyan Dombivli Municipal Corporation (KDMC) has been working silently in the last two years with Non Governmental Organisations (NGOs) to make fuel out of the collected plastic waste.

The KDMC and the NGOs have begun a plastic waste bank which is a three-tyre cycle autorickshaw that collects the plastic waste and then they roped in Urja, an NGO to help them recycle it. According to Milind Gaikwad, Deputy Engineer from Solid Waste Management (SWM) of KDMC said they had begun working towards this goal of creating fuel from plastic over two years ago.

“KDMC along with Urja Foundation have been working for good environment since two years now. We contacted Dr Medha Tadpatrikar, the founder of Rudra Environment Solutions. She has two plants which convert plastic waste into Poly fuel. The poly-fuel is a mixture of diesel, petrol and kerosene, with very high calorific value. It can be used in boilers, furnaces, stoves, in agricultural firms and such purposes,” said Gaikwad.

Within five days, the KDMC plastic bank has collected approximately six tonnes of plastic across Kalyan, Dombivli areas. They have stored the plastic in iron shed house Datta nagar in Dombivli. “We have formed four teams of three tyres cycle autos and go to residential and industrial areas in Kalyan west and east and Dombivli east to collect the plastic waste. This helps us to win over trust of the plastic association and plastic manufacturers who are willingly giving us their plastic waste. We have now collected approximately four tonnes in five days,” said Gaikwad.

The civic officials said the stored plastic, later sent to it to Pune for convert into poly fuel. The KDMC officials admit they have incurred heavy expenses for transportation of cycle autos, transporting the plastic and fuel, employing labourers, paying rent for sheds, and electric charges. This has helped KDMC to now get a plot of land to set up a  solid waste plant. This land is in Baravi village, at Kalyan.

Rudra believes this can be replicated by other municipal corporations as well and they are willing to provide the guidance. “The Rudra plants produce poly-fuel utilising the process of Pyrolysis, that is, the decomposition of condensed substances by heating. Plastic is basically made from crude oil. So we thought of reversing the process and obtaining fuel from it.”

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