• DISTRIBUTED BIO-FERTILIZER PRODUCTION - A WAY TO HUGE ENERGY SAVING, STRUGGLE FOR EXISTENCE OF MANKIND AND PRACTICE THE PHILOSOPHY OF “LIVE AND LET LIVE”.

S. P. Singh, B. P. Gupta*

Abstract


Increasing application of chemical fertilizers per hectare per year is necessary in order to ensure sufficient yield and supply of food grains to the gigantic and rapidly enhancing population of India. It might cause lack of vital energy and micro nutrients in food grains if the application of fertilizers is non-judicious and imbalanced in the field. If the quality of food grains is not maintained at the standard level due to excessive and non-judicious use of chemical fertilizers, it might cause higher cost of agriculture inputs on one hand and deficiency of micro nutrients in the food-grains on the other hand. Higher cost of inputs, lower minimum support price and lower cost of imported food-grains might put the poor farmers in financial bondage. This situation was the major cause of committing suicide to some of the farmers in some regions of India having less agronomic facilities. In order to put an end to this situation application of balanced, judicious and appropriate chemical fertilizers mixed with bio-fertilizers is essential. In order to achieve this, active participation of plants, animals, insects, earthworms, micro-organisms, etc in agronomic activities is imperative for mutual benefit of both human beings and the eco-system and based on the principle of “Live & Let Live.” If all the biomass - food, fodder etc are processed through human beings, animals, earthworms etc. and with the incorporation of composting, Vormi-composting and bio-methanation processes, not only bio-fertilizers but also biogas - a good fuel gas is produced. Involvement of bees as pollinator enhances the crop production appreciably. Production of bio-fertilizer in the farm yard itself saves lot of commercial energy which is consumed in the manufacture of NPK, and its transportation, distribution and application of the same in the field. According to a case study production of one ton urea consumes energy equivalent to 27.66 Giga Cal which is equivalent to around 19 barrel of crude oil. Its mode of transportation and distance of use varies on case to case basis and consumes 120 Mega cal per km (23.28 kWh) and 480 Mega cal per km (93.11 kWh) through rail and road transport respectively where 5.15 Mega Calories is equivalent to one kWh. The energy consumption for manufacture of 1 ton of nitrogenous fertilizer is about nine times that of phosphorus and about 15 times that of potassium. Under the circumstances it has become inevitable to promote preparation of bio-fertilizers through various composting methods preferably NADEP and Vermi-composting, wherever it is not possible to convert the biomass into biogas through biogas plants. Out of 8 million landholders in M.P. around 5million landholders are marginal and small farmers. They could be involved first in the manufacture of bio-fertilizers. This could be done in a phased manner if in the first year 20% marginal and small farmers are motivated to do so and each farmer produces about 9 tons compost by NADEP and 1ton by Vermi-compost method, around 9 million ton compost and 1 million ton Vermi-compost could be produced per year. This could be a better substitute to 0.50 million ton of Nitrogenous fertilizers and could save 0.5x19= 9.5 million barrel of crude oil plus additional commercial energy consumed in its transportation per year a part from improving the fertility of the soil.


Keywords


Chemical fertilizers, Vormiculture, Nadep Compost, Biomass, Food, Fodder, Fuel, Bio-fertilizer.

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