Today, garbage means money

Amiya Kumar Sahu, founder of the National Solid Waste Association of India, a not-for-profit organisation operating in the field of waste disposal conveys this message of garbage means money.

The Mint reports (reg. required) that five organizations are bidding to manage New Delhi’s 7000 tonnes of waste it generates every day. Why?

Entrepreneurs are hoping that they can convert some of that into gold. Five companies are bidding to process 1,000 tonnes of the waste. According to the financial details provided by one bidder, the company will earn a revenue of Rs 21 crore in the first year on an initial investment of Rs50 crore.

Waste HierarchyOne of the companies bidding for the Delhi project is Ramky Group, a Hyderabad-based company that has made its fortune by managing waste. It manages waste in seven cities, and plans to invest Rs400 crore in the business over the next few years, according to its managing director Ayodhya Rami Reddy. Ramky ended 2005-06 with Rs600 crore in revenue.

They have also been trying to understand how they can put their waste to productive use. The Delhi government, for instance, has asked IL&FS Ecosmart, a firm that offers environment management solutions, to study the feasibility of compost plants that will convert waste to fertlizer, and waste-to-energy projects.

“There is a sustainable business model in this (waste management),” says Mahesh Babu, the chief executive officer of IL&FS.

The Waste Management business inevitably will be a good business to be in. However, in the short term it will be hard to make money till systems are developed and more municipalities in India come forward to work with private companies.

As the Waste Hierarchy images above (courtesy of Zero Waste SA) shows there is a opportunity for waste management companies in the lower part of the hierarchy and in the area of waste transformation.

In the medium to long term this business provides a good opportunity to help the environment and make profits.


3 thoughts on “Today, garbage means money

  1. Not only turning waste into useful by products but even managing it to dispose saefly is a big bussiness in the present scenario when people only know how to generate waste and their life styles are totally waste generation oriented.

    Many people have benefited from the ideas of managing waste in the society and now many of them are converting this waste into gold.

    This type of ventures are very helpful for the society and government should give proper subsidies for such enterpreneurs who are working for well being of our environment.

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  3. Garbage handling is an ever growing problem and we have been facing for the last many years. There should be training centres to teach how to handle the garbage into value added products, apart from giving subsidies for the projects. This way a part of our unemployees can earn their bread and reduce the alarming garbage problem.

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