The Current Scenario:
Greater Bengaluru generates up to 4,000 tons of waste per day which is about 0.45 Kgs per person in a day. There are many initiatives that try to minimize the amount of waste produced and maximize the amount of waste getting recycled. Saahas Zero Waste (SZW) facilitates the recycling of approximately 200 Tons of Post Consumer Tetra Pak Cartons every month and makes products from used Tetra Pak cartons like chipboards, PolyAl roofing sheets, tissue rolls and c folds, etc.
Extended Relationship – SZW and Selco Foundation:
“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” –Helen Keller
Following this principle, Selco Foundation, a non-profit organisation based out of Bengaluru, have been instrumental in using recycled products aimed at the greater good. Selco Foundation, set up in the year 2010, is known for its multi-disciplinary approach towards the alleviation of poverty. It has varied programs at different places focusing on ecosystem development for energy access to the poor.
Mr. Rojan Thomas Joseph has worked as an architect in the Built Environments Team at the Urban Community Labs at Selco Foundation and has extensively integrated the use of roofing sheets made from post-consumer Tetra Pak cartons into his designs.
Recycling, in his opinion, is extremely important. Recycled products are a boon to the society as it attempts to find use to the enormous waste that people and industries generate today. He says, “Many resources are used to manufacture one single product, which is used up in less than a minute. It is unethical to ignore the waste that is generated with every product. He believes that if waste is a business opportunity, then there will be real solutions that are economically viable and can bring about real change to our waste problems.
When asked about his outlook on Saahas Zero Waste (SZW), he expresses how highly impressed he is about its growth, ethos and philosophy. He thinks SZW has very high potential and has a long way to go as it is a pioneer in the field of waste management. “So far, so good!” he says, about the durability, performance and trustworthiness of the products.
Rojan opines that the recycled products of SZW are in no way inferior to conventional materials. In fact, they perform better under many conditions. The Reprocessed Corrugated Roofing Sheets of SWZ are water resistant, termite proof and are a great insulation to heat. The aesthetic appeal and inherent advantages of net reduction of carbon footprint are important noteworthy advantages that Selco Foundation found.
One of his projects is the “Housing of Urban Migrants (HUM) Project.” The design aims to deliver a significant improvement in the living conditions of vulnerable poor by providing ample amount of natural light and ventilation, improved indoor air quality, security and protection from pest and rodents, thereby increasing the livelihood productivity and providing a healthy environment safe for in-habitation.
Other noteworthy structures are the Livelihood center for the tribal people in Tulasikere, MM Hills and the Integrated Energy Center (IEC). These IEC’s are solar powered community centers that can host a range of basic services and activities lacking in an under-served community. The center aims at positively impacting quality of life and livelihoods by addressing fundamental energy needs and services relying on energy.
Livelihood Centre for the Tribal people in Tulasikare, MM Hills. Women here are trained here in tailoring, agarbatti making and screen printing.
Integrated Energy Centre (IEC) at Udyambagh, a slum in Belgaum. The IEC uses SZW Roofing Sheets (Reprocessed Waterproof Corrugated Recco). The structure houses a community space meant to be an anganwadi for children and a place for weekly health check-ups by a doctor. Also, it has a small shop serving the everyday needs of the community and providing livelihood to a person in the community. The shop owner runs give out batteries charged by solar power that light up homes in the community at light.
Saahas Zero Waste looks forward to, many more such sustainability projects with Selco foundations and wishes them all the best in all their endeavors.
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