Composting Avoids Methane Emissions

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    The eco park before the refurbishment. A huge waste mountain towers in front of the recycling pilot building.

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    The eco park after the refurbishment. The pilot building has been converted to an education centre.

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    Trucks bringing organic waste to the plant.

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    The biomass is aerated to ensure aerobic composting, resulting in the production of carbon dioxide and heat rather than methane.

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    Factory workers busy separating out biomass for composting.

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    The quality of the compost is inspected.

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    The compost is an organic, high quality fertilizer. It has to compete with substituted, chemical fertilizers on the market.

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    The compost is sold to larger clients such as hotels or golf ressorts. But also small farmers can buy the fertilizer there.

The climate protection project on Bali composts organic waste that previously had to be dumped. In this way, methane emissions from the tip can be avoided and high-value compost is being produced.

Bali, the most important tourism destination in Indonesia, has a growing waste problem which is already having an impact on the tourism sector. In the so far untouched landscape, waste is being illegally disposed of in rivers and lakes, canals, and along the streets. The small amount of gathered waste from the project region Gianyar, in the southeast of the island, is disposed of on a tip in the vicinity of the village Temesi. The methane developing from such a tip is neither collected nor burned and therefore rises unhindered into the atmosphere. Methane is one of the most harmful greenhouse gases and contributes in large quantities to the destabilization of the climate. 

In the face of the deterioration of the situation on-site, the Rotary Club of Bali Ubud decided to counteract this problem and planned and implemented a composting plant. 

85 per cent of the waste in this region is derived from organic material, which can be composted and does not have to be brought to the tip. Another 5 percent, mainly plastics, can be recycled so that after the implementation of the project only 10 percent are dumped on the tip. Since aerobic composting does not cause methane emissions, a considerable reduction of greenhouse gas emissions can be achieved.

In addition to the effect on the climate, the local population also benefits, in that the air pollution from the tip is reduced, the waste volume is reduced by around 90 percent, and different jobs on-site are created.

All parties involved hope that through this model project, which was started in May 2008, composting will spread to new areas on Bali and all of Indonesia. A theme park next to the plant will sensitize visitors to the waste problem and give them a better understanding of composting.

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