Who can open a Safai Bank Branch?

Opening of branches is currently open to educational institutions – schools and colleges. Large residential colonies which are already active in waste management can also enroll. There should be more than 100 families in the colony.


Who can be account holder with Safai Bank?

Account opening is currently limited to only young citizens in the age group of 5-20 years of age. But your educational institute/any other entity should have first agreed to be a branch and only then can you open an account.


How will the Bank function?

There is a lot of flexibility in the operation of the Bank. We recommend that a fixed day be designated for collection which can be weekly/fortnightly/monthly.

On the designated day the students who are the account holders can come and deposit their waste. A few staff and student members should register as coordinators and be responsible for the number of items deposited per student and store them in a sack, container or any other storage used by the institute.


How frequently will the waste be collected?

Since this is a national program giving this answer for specific cities is difficult. Depending upon local support the collection facility can be designed. The more the number of schools and colleges participating the more it will become feasible to organise collection.

As of now we expect a minimum of 10,000 wrappers to be collected at a Branch before we provide a pickup.

The preferred option is that the schools and colleges bring their collected waste to a depot. If some are not able to then a transport vehicle will come and collect from the institute.


Will there be a hygiene issue in storing these items?

If you follow certain practices then there will be no problem. Please dust any remaining food particles in case of wafers or biscuits. There could be powder or salt, this can be removed by dusting. In case of detergent or hand wash packets you can thoroughly wash the items to remove any soapiness. For items like ice cream wrappers please wash thoroughly again. These measures hardly take any time and help you and everybody in the chain handling the waste items.


Why is the waste being burnt? Will it not cause pollution?

Yes burning of the collected MLP waste in a cement kiln produces pollution but A LOT LESS than if the same wrappers were burning at your local garbage dump or on the street. 

As of September 2018 – August 2019, about 10 lakh wrappers have been collected and disposed of through our partners by a process called co-processing. This involves burning the waste in a cement kiln at a very high temperature of about 1500 degrees centigrade.

Co-processing is NOT the same as incineration. There is much you can read online about the two processes.

There are concerns about the waste being burnt and causing pollution. Please bear in mind about what would happen to the waste if you would have thrown it in the dustbin. The same wrapper(s) would have traveled through the municipal waste collection system and arrived at the garbage dumping ground. Here, during dry months the dumps catch fire and the same wrapper would gave burnt anyways. But in this case much more inefficiently at a lower temperature of about 400-500 degrees centigrade.

When plastic waste is burnt at a temperature lower than 800 degrees centigrade then it emits a very toxic chemical called dioxins which are known to cause cancer. These gases then flow into the city causing a health hazard.