Solid waste and its management have been among the most troubling and debated aspects of the rapidly urbanising Kerala. IRTC has taken this as a challenge and decided to work in the area of waste management, particularly in solid waste management. The division is involved in developing various technologies/technology packages for the management of waste of household waste management of household, institutions, well as at the community level with a vision for decentralized management of waste.
The division provides technical support to various Local Self Governments in Kerala in the planning and implementation of Solid Waste Management units / projects in their localities. It had started its experiments in solid waste management in the late 1990s. Hitherto, IRTC has been able to take up the waste management projects and programmes of more than 400 local bodies across the state. Among them, Kunnamkulam and Alappuzha municipal waste management programmes became popular models. IRTC has also succeeded in developing several institutional models for waste management, the plants working in Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode Medical Colleges are good instances of this.
We have also entered into research and development of Latrine Linked Biogas plants which has a higher potential in solving the E. coli contamination in the household water sources of Kerala. Along with the development of waste management devices, SWM division of IRTC has extensively contributed in developing various composting practices and microbial solution for better composting. The division has undertaken projects from DST and KCSTE for this. SWM division is also supporting LSGIs for developing their waste management master plans. The recent initiative of SWM is the formation and running of Harithakarmasena (Green army formulated for the systematic collection and segregation of solid waste) with the support of Haritha Keralam Mission of Government of Kerala. IRTC is acting as a Haritha Sahaya Sthapanam (Resource Support Organisation) for more than 120 local bodies throughout the state.