Tetra Pak India, Coca-Cola India and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH continue their partnership through the second phase of Alag Karo – Har Din Teen Bin, an initiative focused on source segregation of waste. Being implemented by non-profit organisation SAAHAS, the initiative has the support of Municipal Corporation of Gurugram (MCG).

While Alag Karo Phase 1 had targeted high-rise residential societies, commercial complexes and institutions, the focus of Phase 2 is on other settlements like independent houses, slums, small shops and street markets in Gurugram as well as select locations in New Delhi.

The Alag Karo 2.0 launch event, held earlier this month, witnessed participation from various stakeholders across local authorities, RWAs, private partners and NGOs. It highlighted the importance of citizen engagement in promotion of waste segregation and management. 

The main objective of Alag Karo 2.0 is to enhance understanding with regard to sustainable waste management by promoting source segregation, and sensitise over 100,000 people. The program aims at achieving improved recycling rates and reduction in dumping and landfill, through formal engagement with 300 waste workers who will be trained on systematic waste collection and processing. 

In a press release shared with CB, Jaideep Gokhale, sustainability director, Tetra Pak South Asia, said, ‘At Tetra Pak, our cartons are paper-based, recyclable and have the lowest carbon footprint among all other packaging materials used for similar food products. So, when we choose carton packaging, we are already making a positive choice. And when we segregate used cartons from our waste, we ensure that waste pickers earn an additional livelihood, and the used cartons get recycled into many useful items like benches, desks, notepads and roofing sheets. But it all begins with waste segregation at source and its recovery – which is precisely what Alag Karo aims to drive across communities.’

Responding to CB’s queries on the impact of Phase 1 and parameters to assess behavioural change in target groups, the official spokesperson informs that in the three years (2017–19) of Phase 1, the programme has been implemented in 22,000 houses, spread across 42 residential societies in Gurugram. In 25 societies the source segregation level was more than 90%, and in 13 societies it ranged between 75% and 90%. Twenty-one societies are also practising on-site composting, processing 8.9 tonnes of biodegradable waste daily – this reduces dumping in landfills, cutting down GHG emissions by 12,000 tons of CO2 equivalent per year.

As per the spokesperson, the housekeeping staff is trained to maintain a daily log of segregation at household level. Additionally, actual mixed-waste percentage is measured on the audit day to assess segregation level. The segregation level will continue to be tracked under Phase 2 as well. 

The aim of Phase 2 is piloting a sustainable waste management system at a ward level. The intervention will focus on: 

-implementation of source segregation for all kinds of waste generators in a ward

-waste workers integration for streamlining collection and transportation; improving their livelihoods

-technical guidance and operational support to waste-processing units for dry and wet waste

-deployment of an IT tool for waste collection monitoring and supervision that will bring in accountability for different stakeholders