Organic waste recycling in Butterworth, Penang.
THE public can bring their organic wastes to the Bagan Ajam market in Butterworth to have them turned into fertilisers within 24 hours.
Penang Health, Welfare, Caring Society and Environment Committee chairman Phee Boon Poh said a composting plant was recently set up at the market’s car park for the purpose.
He said the project, believed to be the first in Penang, was an initiative by the Seberang Prai Municipal Council (MPSP) and S.I. Green Management Sdn Bhd.
“The company has invested about RM1mil into the technology and plant which has the capacity of processing up to four metric tonnes of wastes per day.
“Presently, the company processes about a tonne of wastes daily and is in need of more wastes to optimise operations,” he said after visiting the plant on Sunday.
Phee said effective microorganisms were used as a catalytic agent to help turn the wastes into fertilisers within a short period of time.
He said all types of organic kitchen wastes, both oily and dry, such as food discards as well as garden wastes such as leaves and twigs were turned into fertilisers that were later sold to the public.
“Apart from padi straws and other agricultural wastes, the people can also bring durian skins and other fruit wastes to this plant,” he said, adding that leachate from the plant was turned into liquid fertiliser.
Phee said he had asked the company to set up similar plants in the other four districts in the state following the success of the pilot plant.
He said that through the state’s Cleaner, Greener Penang campaign and various other recycling efforts, there had been a daily reduction of about 175 metric tonnes of wastes sent to the Pulau Burung landfill.
“We have saved about RM4,000 a day in transportation and storage costs due to this.
“This means we can save nearly RM1.4mil per annum which can be used for beneficial community projects,” he said.
MPSP president Maimunah Mohd Sharif said she would try to get wastes from other markets to be sent to the plant as well.
She said the council’s grass cutting contractors as well as canteen operators in factories and schools could send their wastes to the plant.
“We will work out a mechanism to get residents in our Ampang Jajar low-cost flats in Seberang Jaya to start a pilot effort to send their wastes to this plant,” she said.