Nine schools take part in mudball program
PENAMPANG: Nine schools from Penampang and Kapayan attended the Tentative Program of Mud Balls at Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Bahang yesterday.
The event was part of the ‘Kapayanku Indah’ program inspired by Kapayan assemblywoman Jannie Lasimbang. The schools involved were SM High Kota Kinabalu, SM St Michael, SMK Bahang, SK Penampang, SK Kepayan, SJK (C) Shan Tao and SJK (C) Yue Min.
The program co-organized by Maria Lasimbang from Kivatu Nature Farm and Anne Lasimbang from Guwas Koposizon College was also witnessed by Penampang District Officer Robert Stidi and Albert Mining who represented Executive MDPG Officer Datuk Philip Lasimbang.
Effective fermentation bacteria in mudballs can help to decompose sludge in polluted rivers or ditch channels. Accumulated sludge (rotten organic material) is in a state of oxygen deficiency, since there is little oxygen dissolved in the water. Inside the sludge, harmful fermentation bacteria (putrefactive bacteria) produce harmful gases such as methane, ammonia and hydrogen sulfide by decomposing organic matter without oxygen.
When mudballs are added to the water in this condition, they become embedded in the surface of the sludge and effective fermentation bacteria contained in the mudballs start to decompose the sludge. At the same time, phototrophic bacteria consume harmful gasses, so foul odors will be contained.
As fermentation decomposition progresses, amino acids and saccharides are produced. A portion of them dissolves into the water and phytoplankton increases where there is sunlight, making use of this nutrition. Phytoplankton activities will increase the oxygen in water, helping oxidative decomposition bacteria, which requires oxygen to be more active. As a result, decomposition of sludge is accelerated. Around mudballs, zooplankton will increase, transforming sludge into detritus, an organic sediment made of organic matter and microbes, and the sludge will no longer be harmful.
Detritus containing bubbles of carbon dioxide and oxygen etc., which are produced by the activities of microbes, will rise to the surface. Sometimes the rivers look polluted with these floating fragments of detritus. However, this is due to the process of the decomposition of sludge and the purification of the rivers. As detritus breaks down into smaller segments and flows along rivers, creatures which eat it, such as small fish, shrimp, crabs, and shellfish, increase in number. The more fish there are, the more birds will come, leading to greater diversity in the ecosystem. The microbes contained in detritus will improve the selfpurification ability of rivers by making the ecosystems of which they are a part richer and more vibrant.