District collector of Ernakulam, Kerala, K Mohammed Y Safirulla will lead the first-of-its-kind waste-to-energy plant in the district
Working as a district collector in Ernakulam, one of Kerala’s busiest districts, K Mohammed Y Safirullan is assigned to oversee the waste-to-energy plant being developed in Brahmapuram, an initiative that has been approved by the government and will soon begin construction. However, even before he took on the overseeing of this first-of-its-kind plant in Ernakulam, Safirulla was already working towards his vision of a greener Ernakulam which part of the umbrella mission, Haritha Keralam.
“Using these ideas as a base, we have our own set of innovations which we have applied to Ernakulam district”, says Safirulla According to this IAS officer, the district has been encouraging the practice of “green marriages,” which was motivated by research which revealed that at any given wedding in the area, plastic the waste generated per person was 150 grams!
“Last year, we invited catering heads, religious leaders, and marriage hall owners to educate them on how to follow the green protocol. They agreed to use steel glasses instead of plastic or paper, and worked towards creating decorations made of biodegradable material,” he explains. According to the official website, Haritha Keralam aims to fulfil three tasks: encourage proper waste management, rejuvenate rivers, ponds streams and tanks, and finally, promote organic agriculture. Looking further into waste management is another local government department in Kerala, known as the Suchitra Mission. Its ‘green protocol’ highlights a set of measures to reduce waste. “We take green protocol to children as well. Our project, Haritha Vanam aims at implementing change in their own homes, such as not using plastics, and planting their own small home garden. After all, change has to start from home,” he says. Safirulla is also a strong advocate for banning plastics under 50 microns in the district. This idea has taken hold across several subdivisions of Ernakulam.
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