Ferment sites fight pollution

Fifteen ferment stations have been set up at Women's Homes at Jiuliting Sub-District in Songjiang.

Fifteen ferment stations have been set up at Women’s Homes at Jiuliting Sub-District in Songjiang to replace chemical detergents with a fermented product made by residents themselves.

Since March, volunteers collected 722 kilograms of kitchen scraps, and 352 local residents joined in to make fermented products to use for washing hands, dishes, household utensils and even furniture.

“When we use chemical detergents, the sewage water actually pollutes underground water and the natural environment. The fermented detergents are easy to make, environmental friendly and widely used at home, and it’s totally free,” a woman surnamed Zhang from the Southern Olympic Garden said.

The ferment stations at Luting, Zhongda and Southern Olympic Garden communities recruited 53 volunteers and provided four trainings for the volunteers and local residents.

From April to June, 185 residents from the three communities took kitchen scraps to the stations and swapped waste for the washing product.

The fermentation system was devised by a Songjiang native Zhou Yingjie, who has been working on the idea for many years. At the stations, volunteers clean the fruit and vegetable peels, add water and sugar to fruit and vegetable scraps and let the mixture ferment.

The system can also be applied at home by mixing brown sugar, fruit and vegetable peels, and water at a ratio of 1:3:10 and letting the mixture ferment.

“When residents send their garbage to the station, we chop it up, put it in a big vat and add sugar and water at a certain ratio,” said Shen Wanhua from the Xiaokunshan community station. “After three months of fermentation, we get the essence.”

After the campaign was launched in March, it quickly became popular among locals. Plans have been set up in the Jiuliting Sub-District for more ferment stations. It will make it convenient for locals to swap, learn and join the campaign.

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