I hope this message finds you well!
Waste Ventures is pleased to provide you with an update on some recent strides we’ve been making in sustainable waste management in India. You might remember from our last update the work that we were doing in India’s heartland – Indore, Madhya Pradesh – to improve the efficiency and quality of our partner’s composting process. The results of our work there was to more than halve the time required to turn organic waste into compost, which has effectively doubled the capacity of their eight small-scale composting plants located in residential colonies across the city of Indore.
Back then, we were also aiming to expand services to a new city, and we now provide door-to-door collection for 18,000 people in the town of Damanjodi, Orissa. These residents were previously taking their waste to central bins, where it was only sporadically picked up, resulting in waste left strewn about in wide swathes around the bins. A staff of 26 waste collectors started with us on September 1st to clean up Damanjodi, and reprocess over 70% of the waste into valuable by-products. These waste collectors all come from ‘scheduled tribes’, or minority tribes that are systematically placed at economic and social disadvantage as a largely rural minority group.
This is also the first project within which we are employing the new and improved handcart designed by MIT engineer Adam Talsma. You can see more about his research and cart design here. The design addresses three critical failures of existing carts: cost, durability, and ease of use. Previously available cart designs cost over $200, were prone to frequent break-downs due to design flaws, and difficulties in loading and unloading often caused back and shoulder problems for the staff. The new wastecart can now be locally manufactured for less than $100, is durable enough to carry double the weight of waste and a lifetime of at least five years.
Your generous donations have made it possible to fully equip our 26 waste collectors with uniforms, protective gear, and these brand spanking new wastecarts. Besides feeling and looking smart, the waste collectors now carry themselves with greater pride and find the carts lend dignity to their oft-disdained profession.
As our friends, we value your thoughts and like to hear from you! You can always send us an email, follow us on Twitter, and like us on Facebook. Thank you for your ongoing support in transforming the emerging waste sector!
With warm regards from New Delhi,
Tiffany and the Waste Ventures team
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