RECYCLING:Subang Jaya Municipal Council teams up with UPM and market traders on vermicomposting and anaerobic digestion biogas project
SUBANG Jaya Municipal Council (MPSJ) has become the first council in the country to venture in both vermicomposting and anaerobic digestion biogas.
It is a joint venture between MPSJ, Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) and market traders.
The project at Taman Sri Serdang market is part of the Serdang Green Town programme launched last month, said council president Datuk Asmawi Kasbi.
"We're working with Universiti Putra Malaysia to provide the expertise on vermicomposting to produce organic fertilisers using earth worms. Vegetables, meat and other items that have turned bad are composted in large containers at the market compound," said Asmawi.
"We hope the traders will support this project by separating organic waste from chicken, fish, fruits and vegetables for composting.
"This will also help reduce the market's waste of two tonnes daily. About 200kg of waste products can be used for vermicomposting and one tonne can be fed into the biogas processor," he said.
The vermicomposting project, which costs about RM140,000, is funded by the Higher Education Ministry while the other RM200,000 for anaerobic digestion biogas is paid for by the Housing and Local Government Ministry.
He said the fertilisers will be shared among traders and the council, while the biogas generated will be used to power the generator set at the market.
The vermicomposting takes about 20 days to a month to be ready for use, which is faster than composting without worms which takes about three months.
He added that the project is part of the council's Strategic Planning 2012-2020 and is one of the collaborative efforts with the university in nine major fields. They are community services, environment, engineering, green city, information technology, safe city, human capital development, urban services and beautification.
Also present were Professor Azni Idris from UPM's engineering faculty, Professor Mohd Ali Hassan from its biotechnology faculty and representatives from the National Solid Waste Management Department and Zone 20 residents' committee.
Vegetable seller Samad Abdul Manaf, 68, said he was happy to be part of the project.
"All we need to do is to separate the waste before processing them in the container. Before this, I used to do simple composting by leaving unwanted vegetables to grow lemon grass in the small compound at the market," he said.