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ITC to buy paper waste at Rs. 4.50 a kg
The Hindu - 11 Jun 2008

VALUABLE WASTE: ITC will buy from residents such discarded cartons that are now dumped as garbage.

The Coimbatore Corporation’s burden of solid waste disposal may reduce when ITC Limited buys all paper waste and plastic bags from residents in the city from the end of this month.

This is being organised by the Residents’ Awareness Association of Coimbatore (RAAC) that is assisting the Corporation in a major way in making the city garbage-free, particularly free of plastics.

It will take off on June 29, the day on which the association will celebrate ‘Alagana Kovai’ day.

ITC’s message is that it is time people stopped treating paper waste such as soap or toothpaste wrappers with contempt. While newspapers and magazines have a re-sale market, paper waste such as cardboard cartons, paper covers or wrappers do not have one. But, they have immense value that ITC taps, says senior manager (materials) of the company S. Murugesan. “We buy paper waste at Rs. 4.50 a kg and plastic bags for Rs. 6 a kg,” says Mr. Murugesan. The company’s plant at Mettupalayam here recycles 300 tonnes of paper waste a day. One of the many items made from the waste is thin three-layer boards to pack garments. Association vice-president G. Soundararajan says 30 per cent of 600 tonnes of waste generated every day in the city contains paper and this will meet the company’s requirement.

Mr. Murugesan, however, points out that segregation of waste at source is needed. Otherwise, paper waste will become damp when it mixes with wet kitchen waste. The company will implement here its Bangalore and Hyderabad system of providing bags to individual houses to store the waste paper and plastic bags separately. “The waste will be brought to a common point from where we will take it to our plant,” he says.