Living Green

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Objective: As followers of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, we strive to set an example of green, clean and healthy environment to the world.

Trash to Treasure/ Photo:Tenzin Namgyal

Introduction:  Wild lands, untouched by human are clean. Every living being, humans included, appreciates and exhibits a healthy life when living in green, clean and natural environment. Sadly, human beings cause a lot of pollution in the places that they occupy and even beyond. Although human beings are considered the most intelligent animal in this world, they do not seem to be able to figure out the consequences of pollution in advance. Now, after long period of causing pollution, we are realising the mistakes that we and our ancestors have made that have affected the environment negatively. Our adverse effects on the environment have caused serious environmental issues. Countries, state governments and even municipals are facing tremendous problems in their efforts to clean highly polluted cities. Taking this issues into account, The Dalai Lama Institute for Higher Education (DLIHE) started a waste management system right in the very beginning of the institution.
Waste management system in our college has evolved over time. In the very beginning, a group of ten volunteer students led by EVS lecturer started waste collection and segregation. The volunteers would change every month. In year 2012, a new system called “Work study program” was put in place. This system has strengthened the waste management system by providing wages to the students who wish to earn some money, otherwise, their hours are credited to themselves as community service.
The program has continued to work well. However, two major problem exist. First, volunteers faced difficulties in separating badly mixed waste. Residents continue to mix dry and wet waste despite having been asked several times to separate dry from wet waste. Further, separate garbage bins have been provided in all the hostels and staff quarters. The second problem is that volunteers are not able to spare time during end of semester exams to do waste management. In order to address this gap during exams and other festivals, we have developed another system whereby ALL student of DLIHE will be involved in waste management. The students work in groups of ten for ten days, supervised by the EVS lecturer. This system will ensure that waste management is not neglected during exams and/or other festivities. The system may evolve in order to solve gaps/problems as and when they arise.
Action:
Collected waste are segregated based on their type. Wet waste is buried to make manure out while recyclable dry waste is separated and stored in different containers before being sold to agencies who buy it. Earlier, we sold our waste to any willing buyer but, this has since changed and now we are only selling the dry waste to a government agency in order in accordance with the law. Money obtained from the sales is submitted to the DLIHE’s Accountant. The funds can also be used for buying dust bins, gloves and mask when they are needed by the waste management team.

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