Saturday, May 31, 2008

A Green idea for Mumbai

In response to the issue of climate change and the global food crisis, the question uppermost in the mind of concerned citizens is what can we as individuals do to prevent the catastrophe looming over our heads. The idea on offer is not my original idea but an amalgamation of some of the ideas practically implemented and implementable without a major upheaval in the life of citizens. I feel that garbage disposal is a major issue and a methodology wherein wet garbage separated from the dry garbage and processed at site can be done very easily. The model envisages daily collection of garbage by women from an organization called Stree Mukti Sangathana. These women can be employed for 100 households paying Rs. 50 per month to these women of which Rs. 3000 is given as pay. They can make extra income from the lazy citizen who either gives up his dry garbage or gives his garbage not separated. I envisage a model of terrace or city farming where this garbage is used to directly grow vegetables on the roof top of every building participating in the project. This can be very easily done and in fact Mr R. T. Doshi has done this in Mumbai in his terrace garden in Bandra. The cost of maintaining this garden can be met from the extra Rs.2000 every month collected from the citizens. The veggies harvested can be given to the households in the building proportionately to the number of members in each household. In this way we can help by reducing the problem of acquiring land fills for disposal of garbage. We eliminate the use of fuel guzzling polluting diesel trucks to send the garbage out of the city. We make our house roof tops cooler and reduce consumption of electricity for cooling the house. We make the city greener. We become food producers. We provide employment to destitute women and help them live a life of dignity rather than reduce them to rag-pickers. We will reduce the carbon foot print of the city and earn carbon credits for Mumbai. In short it is a complete win win situation.

4 comments:

Siddartha said...

Unfortunately Dr Doshi is no more and no one is championing his concept of city farming. I recently went to his Bandra bungalow you mentioned - met his son & got some booklets Dr Doshi had made. Those are a great learning source and wonder if the same can be shared for public good.

The only existing example of his work is at the catering building of the Bombay Port Trust (near Ghadiyal Ghari Gate). The entire terrace is a forest - variety of fruit trees and vegetables. The employees there maintain it pretty well.

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