From Waste to Energy: Kaduwela Municipal Council and UNDP work towards sustainable waste management

March 21, 2021

Colombo, Sri Lanka, 21 March 2021: To create a transformation in the management of municipal waste, by generating electricity and producing liquid fertilizer using bio degradable solid waste, a Biogas system was handed over to the ownership of the Kaduwela Municipal Council (KMC) this morning, under the leadership of Hon. Mayor Buddhika Jayavilal with the participation of Mr. Robert Juhkam, Resident Representative, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Sri Lanka and Mr Harsha Wickramasinghe, Deputy Director General, Sri Lanka Sustainable Energy Authority.

Following the successful pilot phase of the biogas demonstration unit capable of processing 1 tonne, this joint initiative of UNDP and KMC aims to increase the productivity of the Solid Waste Management Unit in Kaduwela, to process 10 tonnes of bio-degradable solid waste per day. This waste which would have ended up in landfills, now generates electricity that is exported to the grid and produces liquid organic fertilizer, resulting in a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 1000-1300 tonnes per annum.

Research shows that the Western Province generates more than 59% of the country’s daily collection of waste, amounting to over 4200 tonnes, with high degree of biodegradability. However, the high biodegradability of the waste can also cause problems for the environment and society, unless effective and efficient waste management systems are established.

UNDP in Sri Lanka entered into a Government Co-Financed project with the Kaduwela Municipal Council in December 2016 and has since been supporting the KMC and the Government of Sri Lanka to effectively manage solid waste and generate biogas energy.

The project is a part of the Government’s plans for a greener Sri Lanka, which aims to increase the use of renewable energy to 70% by 2023, and the Government’s 2015 Energy Sector Development Plan to make Sri Lanka an energy self-sufficient nation by 2030.