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Meisha, a community on the way to carbon neutrality

From: Shenzhen Daily | Updated:2022-06-08

Black flies may be annoying, but black soldier flies are quite different. They are environmentally friendly and can turn waste into treasures.

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At the Vanke Center in Dameisha, headquarters of Vanke Co. Ltd., kitchen waste is handled in an unusual way. Kitchen and canteen leftovers, after assorting, drying and grinding, are taken to a small 70-square-meter room nearby called the Black Soldier Fly Station. At the station, the in-house black soldier fly larvae are raised and deployed to consume all kitchen waste.

The Black Soldier Fly Station, established by Vanke Foundation in 2019, can handle up to 200 kilograms of kitchen waste from three canteens in the Vanke Center in 24 hours.

“The black soldier fly larvae can consume kitchen waste 200,000 times their weight in their 7 to 9-day growth. During their 25-day life cycle, these flies can produce antimicrobial agents — making them a good source of insect protein for fish or animal feed,” Liu Yuan, deputy secretary general of Vanke Foundation, which funds the project, said during an interview yesterday, World Environment Day.

The larvae’s excrement can be used as a fertilizer, which has been used for planting flowers at Vanke Center complex’s rooftop garden.

Using black soldier flies to deal with kitchen waste can eliminate community waste, thus reducing costs for transportation and treatment. Vanke’s effort on carbon neutral community construction mainly focuses on organic garbage treatments, like using black soldier flies in promoting a low-carbon lifestyle in Meisha.

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Dameisha Community in Meisha Subdistrict has been chosen as one of three communities in the city to pilot the near zero emission program. Vanke Foundation, in cooperation with Meisha Subdistrict, aims to turn the community into a demonstration area for carbon neutrality.

At a seminar on the construction of Meisha carbon neutral community, which was held recently to mark World Environment Day, 26 scholars from 17 institutions in the country, including universities and environmental research institutes, brainstormed ideas for the construction of a carbon neutral community.

The Vanke Foundation-funded seminar was organized by the Institute for Advanced Studies of Humanities and Social Sciences, Beijing Normal University and Meisha Subdistrict. Experts thought that the construction of a carbon neutral community not only relies on technological breakthroughs or upgrading in energy, electricity and transportation facilities, but also needs public participation, low-carbon lifestyle and community governance.