Gaps in scientific treatment of municipal solid waste in Ernakulam revealed

Nearly 164 tonnes of municipal solid waste out of the estimated 1,199 tonnes generated daily in Ernakulam remains untreated, according to official estimates.

The gaps in the scientific management of solid waste came to the fore after the Local Self-Government Department collated the data submitted by local bodies as on February this year. A detailed picture on the status of the municipal solid waste management was submitted before the National Green Tribunal in the case related to the compliance of Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016 by States.

Of the 1,199 tonnes per day of solid waste, the quantity of dry waste was about 370.57 tonnes. An analysis of the quantity of waste generated showed that about 592 tonnes were treated through composting and other decentralised facilities. Nearly 349 tonnes were either recovered or recycled/co-processed. Nearly 93 tonnes of waste were dumped in landfills.

WTE plant proposed

On the measures proposed to plug the widening gap in the generation and treatment of solid waste, the authorities proposed the setting up of waste-to-energy plant of 300 tonnes per day capacity at Brahmapuram. Nearly 20 acres were available for the common treatment facility. The report also cited that panchayats and municipalities were yet to submit the data on the compost pits provided on their premises for treatment of biodegradable waste. The district has one major and four minor sites for dumping the municipal solid waste.

The report stated that the Kerala State Industrial Corporation had floated an e-tender to identify a suitable agency for the rehabilitation of municipal solid waste dumping site at Brahmapuram. The Local Self-Government Department had asked the Kochi Corporation to examine the quantity of legacy waste assessed and rate quoted by the bidder in consultation with the State Pollution Control Board. The corporation had entrusted the National Institute of Technology-Kozhikode to carry out a drone study to assess the actual quantity of the old waste lying in heaps at Brahmapuram.

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