Waste, after corruption and smog, is probably Egypt’s number one nemesis. Everywhere one travels – even the most popular tourist spots – is overrun with organic and solid rubbish. Finally, the Ministry of Agriculture is getting serious about addressing the problem.
Although not a solution for solid waste and recyclables, the government is considering ordering tons of special earthworms from Australia that are capable of processing huge quantities of agricultural and organic waste, as well as polluted water. The worms then create a byproduct that can be recycled.
In Egypt, 34,000 tons of organic waste are produced each day. 32% of that is generated in Cairo, while organic waste from Giza, Alexandria, and Cairo put together account for over 50% of the country’s total waste. Pigs used to treat waste previously were culled following the international swine flu scare.
Today most of the organic waste is buried while the agricultural waste is burned, contributing to the black cloud that is ruinous to air quality and citizen health in the country’s capital. The Egyptian government is beginning to realize that a lot of the waste can be recycled, that it is a natural resource.
Enter Australia’s superpower earthworms from Australia.
According to Al-Masry Al-Youm, 1,000 tons of earthworms can weasel their way through 1,000 tons of organic waste every day. In the process, they create a byproduct that renders soil very fertile. They can even be used to treat sewage water, as the worms are able to munch through heavy elements and acidic water, creating water clean enough to use for irrigation.
According to the Ministry of Agriculture’s Climate Research Department, 26-28 million tons of waste can be recycled every year to create fertilizers and even natural gas.
The Center for Agricultural Research intends to use the worms for five years to clean up the current environmental problems. Surplus worms will be used as a high-protein feed for fish and poultry.
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