Through composting, the value of bio-waste is maintained and the generation of waste is reduced, increasing at the same time ecologic and social sustainability.
Due to the depletion of natural resources and fossil fuels, and the need to transform biowaste into compost that increases the organic matter content of the agricultural lands of the Montiel region, interest in the circular economy has grown, optimizing the flows of materials, energy and waste and enhancing coordination between different administrations, foundations and occupational centres.
The project is carried out in the ITI zone (Integrated Territorial Investment Zone) established by the regional government in the Montiel region. In the municipality of Villanueva de los Infantes, two specific centres have been selected to implement the initiative for the separate collection of foodwaste in large generators. The action plan focuses on the organic waste generated in the kitchens of a nursing home and an occupational centre.
The centres participating in the project are the Santo Tomás Senior Citizens Residence Foundation and the ADIN Occupational Centre, each of which contributes its bioresidues, performs the composting tasks and uses compost in its own facilities.
The Consortium, a public company that manages both the collection and treatment of municipal waste from 92 municipalities and 400.000 inhabitants, among which is the municipality of Villanueva de los Infantes, will lead the project and use it as experience to be applied in other areas where waste management is carried out, and even serve as a reference to be implemented in other areas of Castilla La Mancha.
The joint collaboration is needed for at least 2years. The initial investment is 10,650€, coming from the RSU Consortium of Ciudad Real.
For the follow-up and coordination, the Consortium will allocate 0.2 persons/year, and 0.2 persons/year more for the composter control and the application.
Evidence of success
The amount of bioresidues obtained in the initial phase is 900 kg/month, from which it is expected to obtain about 350 kg/month of compost, which will be supplied to the gardens and greenhouses of the participating centres. In addition, light packaging, glass and paper and cardboard generated in the aforementioned centres will be recycled.
There is an active participation of the staff, once they have been informed of the process, thereby promulgating a new lifestyle in terms of waste management
One of the biggest challenges corresponds to the sensitization and education of the participants to change their habits into new ones. Another difficulty arises when carrying out a monitoring of composters throughout the transformation and maturation process.
Potential for learning or transfer
The participation and commitment between the selected centres allows the project to be carried out successfully. This attitude is essential to achieving a circular economy on a small scale and to being able to transfer it to other centres of similar characteristics and also to domestic households, achieving in the medium term a massive participation and a reduction in the generation of household waste.
This initiative can be transferred to those European agricultural regions having similar socio-economic characteristics and that need to improve efficiency in the management of their waste.
Furthermore, this experience helps to encourage the active participation of various administrations and to improve citizens' environmental education with real cases of easy dissemination.
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