From Waste to Organic Fertiliser

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    This farmer harvested this massive radish on his farm. He has been using the organic compost from the project. He won a local vegitable competition with this radish.

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    "I am proud to work here because it is for a cleaner Kathmandu." Haridevi Maharjan, picking out impurities from the organic material like plastics.

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    Prakash B.K. proudly showing his dumper truck, which is used to transport the materials: "My dream is to become a driver of a big truck and heavy machinery."

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    Some of the staff, all from the local community, turning the compost. Surinta Maharjan, Sano Thapa, Devaki K.C. (left to rigth)

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    "The project has given me a good job, now I feel proud to say that I can generate more income for my family." Sanu Shrestha, employee.

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    Thanks to the project organic waste from local markets is collected.

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    The production of the compost through an aerobic degradation lasts four months – six weeks to produce the compost and 12 weeks to mature it.

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    Filling the compost into bags: The site provides jobs for women discriminated by their families and therewith contributes to gender equality.

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    After four months the organic material has turned into "black gold", turning waste into value.

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    "High quality organic compost fertilizer" is sold in bags to Kathmandu valley farmers.

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    Produced compost is a soil structure improver.

The main objective of the project is to process organic waste into compost, reducing methane emissions otherwise caused in traditional landfills. In this way, greenhouse gas emissions from traditional landfills are reduced and high-value compost is being produced.

29 jobs created
jobs created
11,000 tonnes of organic waste collected
tonnes of organic waste collected
1,000 tonnes of compost produced
tonnes of compost produced

Waste is a major problem in Kathmandu, and organic waste amounts to almost 70 per cent of the total waste. To solve this problem, Biocomp Nepal has been created. In March 2011, a pilot project started with a composting facility in the surroundings of Kathmandu. The plant collects waste from vegetable markets producing compost through aerobic degradation and at the same time reducing methane emissions. During the pilot, in total 140 tons of fresh organic waste from local markets were collected (2 to 3 tons per day) and 15 tons of high quality compost was produced. The compost meets international quality standards regarding nutrient content. In addition, the Biocomp plant has created 30 permanent jobs for local people.

Based on this success, the up-scaling process has begun. The new project site for larger capacities has been contracted and the construction of further composting facilities started in January 2013. As waste is a major problem in many cities of developing countries, the project can potentially be replicated in different places in Nepal or elsewhere.

Since the project started 11,000 tonnes of organic waste have been collected and prevented from being dumped in the landfill. This organic waste was used to produce 1,000 tons of compost of which 250 tons have been sold to local farmers.
Maarten Gnirrep, Plant Manager, Biocomp

The beneficiary community of the project is, on the one hand, the entire population in and around Kathmandu, since the waste problem is alleviated by the reduction of the amount of waste processed in traditional landfills. On the other hand, farmers profit from the produced compost that they can use for their crops. The switch from chemical fertilizers to compost means a more sustainable way of treating the fields. Fertilizers from organic waste have a positive effect on soil and food quality and therefore benefit the farmers as well as the consumers. Available and affordable natural fertilizer such as compost therefore fulfills an existing need. By closing the loop of organic nutrients, Biocomp promotes sustainable agriculture. The site particularly provides jobs for women discriminated by their families and therewith contributes to gender equality.

Biocomp’s revenue comes from compost sales and from carbon credits. Because the latter would contribute to the revenue only from 2013 on, myclimate made upfront payments, which allowed Biocomp to finance the initial investment.

Project on the UNFCCC page

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  • 11,000 tonnes of organic waste have been collected
  • 1,000 tons of compost produced
  • 250 tons of bio fertilizer have been sold to local farmers
  • 29 jobs have been created
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