Tambaram corporation to set up 150 tonnes per day bio-CNG plant

Chennai: Tambaram Corporation has called for bids to identify a contractor to build, operate, and maintain a 150-tonne per day capacity plant to treat wet waste and generate bio-CNG in Vengadamangalam in Chengalpet for 44.43 crore. “The bio-CNG plant will be ready next year,” said the corporation’s chief engineer, K Pandurangan.

Tambaram produces around 400 tonnes of total waste daily, and wet waste forms half of it. The latter will be sent to the bio-CNG plant for treatment, he added. “The bio-CNG generated will then be liquefied, bottled, and sold to restaurants and gas stations,” said the engineer.

The five microcomposting centres’ capacity to decompose wet waste is not sufficient. A couple of facilities in East Tambaram and Selaiyur are not working.

At least 65% of wet or organic waste can be converted to bio-CNG, said B Samuel Jacob, a biotechnology professor at the SRM Institute of Science and Technology. Around 130 tonnes of bio-CNG can be produced per day from 200 tonnes of wet waste.

He said that “bio-gas is a useful method to recycle organic waste over composting because the latter can release methane, a greenhouse gas, if done inefficiently. However, bio-CNG involves converting methane into fuel and will not release it into the atmosphere.”

Residents welcome the move but say that door-to-door garbage collection does not happen every day. “It is collected only five days a week, which is not regularly. The plant can be used to its full potential only if wet waste is collected every day,” said Malathy M, a resident of Madambakkam.

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