Today Chalakudy becomes first local body in India to roll out a mobile septage treatment unit

The mobile septage treatment unit that costs Rs 50 lakh will be mounted behind a truck. Photo: Special arrangement

Thrissur: The Chalakudy Municipality will launch a mobile septage treatment unit today, becoming the first local self-government institution in the country to be equipped with one.

Chalakudy Municipality chairman Ebby George said the facility will be inaugurated by Local Self-Government Minister MB Rajesh at 3 pm on Saturday.

The truck-mounted treatment plant is designed to treat septage at the site of each house and solve the issue of waste dumping.

The unit would separate solid and liquid waste by processing it through various layers of filters – sand, carbon and ultra-filtration with chlorine dosage. The end products will be clear water that can be used for gardening and briquettes for kindling fire. Any sludge would be taken for secondary treatment.

“All this will be done in an hour,” said Manohar Varghese, Director of Bhouma Envirotech Pvt. Ltd., a Suchitwa Mission-accredited agency that will implement the technology in Chalakudy. “It is a completely mechanised, pollution-free method used in developed countries. The technology is developed by the Puducherry-based NGO Water Sanitation and Hygiene Institute (WASH). The capacity of the treatment unit is 6,000 litres per hour. We will be able to take waste from a single home at a time,” he said.

The treatment capacity of the unit is 6,000 litres per hour. Photo: Special arrangement

The mobile unit costs nearly Rs 50 lakhs. The treatment plant is mounted on a 15-ft truck. It needs just the truck driver and an operator to handle the unit, said the implementing agency.

According to the municipal authorities, the project was supposed to be launched by the end of 2023, but there was a delay in acquiring sanction from the state and central agencies to commercialise the product

After the inauguration, the municipality will launch a helpline number to avail the facility. The rate of the service will also be announced next week.

The Chalakudy Municipality has entrusted the Socio Economic Unit Foundation (SEUF) which focuses on water and environmental sanitation to oversee the initiative while a team from the Bhouma Envirotech Pvt. Ltd. will provide technical support.

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