“My Waste My Responsibility”, is the mantra for No Dumping, a non-profit organisation that aims at having cities without dumpsites. The organisation has been working in the field of waste management since January 2016. From waste collection to segregation to processing and safe disposal of waste, the NGO not only handles waste efficiently, but it is also making weddings and parties go waste free.
Started by three youngsters, Suresh Bhandari, Saranraj and Prashanth, the group has now 15 active members and volunteers who support them in events and in spreading the message of waste management.
The focus is to not burden the landfills with unsegregated, non-recyclable and non-biodegradable waste. To achieve their objective of no dumping, the organisation is helping individuals, organisations, and institutions in segregating and managing the waste.
Waste is collected from different locations including apartments, associations, and airport. The waste which is collected by the team is already segregated into three broad categories, organic waste, inorganic waste and sanitary waste. The waste segregation is done by the waste generators only. While organic waste is sent for composting, inorganic waste is again separated to recyclable and non-recyclable waste. Recyclable waste goes for recycling and non-recyclable finds use as Alternative Fuel Resource (AFR).
As of now, sanitary waste goes to corporation landfill, but the team is working on finding a solution to treat sanitary waste.
At weddings and parties, disposable plastic cutlery is used without giving a thought to the plastic waste being generated and the burden it will put on landfills. To minimise the use of plastic, the NGO started with ‘No Dumping’ Wedding. Under this initiative, plastic water bottles, glasses, plates are replaced with steel glasses and re-usable plastic tumblers.
Reusable plastic tumblers can be used again and again. Clean and rinse the tumblers properly and they are good to go. While plastic cups and bottles and replaced with reusable plastic tumblers, plates are replaced with banana leaves. It is like going back to traditional methods.
Along with replacing the cutlery, the team checks the place of the event and recognises the place where waste will be generated like kitchen, juice counter or snacks counter. After identifying the source, two dustbins, each for dry waste and wet waste are kept at every place.
Not only this, the team urges organisers to use digital media to send invitations and use eco-friendly materialS in decorations. Floral decoration is one of the most viable and feasible options as flowers are compostable, easily accessible and look pretty also.
Along with managing the waste, the team in collaboration with No Food Waste focusses on no food wastage at weddings and other such events. All the leftover food and water are used wisely without anything going to the landfill. Usually, most of the people don’t finish the water they take or get in a glass. Collectively, all the left over water makes up to huge amount of water. The water is used for watering plants and cleaning purpose. Along with water, a lot of food is wasted during parties. All the waste on table goes for composting. Apart from that, unused and excess food is collected by the team and is distributed among needy.
Recently, No Dumping team was called at a wedding to manage the waste. The team served 2,200 people and ended up segregating 1100kg of compostable wet waste and 100kg of recyclable dry waste.
The teams efforts have been recognised by the Prime Minister and this year, on the occasion of third anniversary of Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, the group was awarded for waste segregation.
Last month, Governor of Tamil Nadu, Banwarilal Purohit visited the NGO and interacted with the volunteers. He not only understood the process, but also appreciated the efforts of the NGO.
Currently, around 4,000 households have adopted the practice of segregating waste, voluntarily.