The Cebu city government started operating a small-scale composting facility in the South Road Properties (SRP) last week.
“Initially, we can process one to two tons of garbage everyday from Carbon Market. These are biodegradable waste,” said Arlie Gesta, Cebu City Environment and Natural Resources Office (CCENRO) chief.
A shredder machine is used to tear up the trash, such as rotten fruits and vegetables.
Gesta said more machines will be brought to the area to increase its processing capacity.
Carbon Market generates 20 to 30 tons of biodegradable wastes daily, he said.
Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama gave the order to set up a composting site at the SRP as an emergency measure to relieve the pressure of uncollected or slow collection of garbage in the city when a budget allocation ran out for tipping and hauling fees in September.
The site near Pond A at the SRP is near the impounding area of the Cebu City Transportation Office (CCTO).
When Cebu Daily News visited the facility yesterday, nearly 10 small composting beds were lined up in the area.
The beds were covered with white canvas sheets and contained wastes like rotten fruits and vegetables.
Gesta said they use vermicaste or the droppings of a special type of worms to hasten the decomposition.
He said they will soon start using the Takakura composting method which uses a seed compost mixed with organic wastes and microorganisms that break them down.
“By the time we start with the Takakura method in the SRP, we will also be initially processing another two tons a day,” he said.
Another method, called Windrow composting, will also be done in the area.
This entails having biodegradable wastes being piled in long rows for higher volumes.
He said by the time they use this method, the site will handle another four tons per day.
“We still can’t say that this is creating a big impact on the garbage collection situation. Our initial objective is to reduce garbage by 10 tons per day. So far, we can accomplish two tons with vermicomposting. I think next week, we can start with the Takakura method,” he said.
Gesta assured that the area won’t have a foul smell since they spray live microorganisms like EM-1 to offset the odor caused by garbage.
The compost produced in the facility will be used as fertilizer by the Cebu City Parks and Playgrounds Commission in their nursery of ornamental plants.