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Steps to control pollution in Greater Kochi area mooted

Staff Reporter

Union Ministry holds up eco clearance for various projects


Main sources of pollution are industries, municipal garbage and hospital waste

Industries agree to spend Rs. 150 crore for pollution control measures


KOCHI: An action plan with short and long-term measures has been chalked out by the Kerala State Pollution Control Board for controlling pollution in the Greater Kochi Area.

The action plan was prepared following a moratorium slapped on consideration of projects for environmental clearance in the critically polluted areas and industrial clusters by the Central Pollution Control Board.

The moratorium was recently extended to October 31.

Earlier, the Union Ministry for Environment and Forest had ranked the Greater Kochi area as the 24 {+t} {+h} polluted industrial cluster in the country in its Comprehensive Environmental Pollution Index. The Greater Kochi area encompasses Kochi Corporation, six municipalities and 25 village panchayats.

The Ministry has also announced that a decision on the moratorium will be taken after “reviewing the initiation of implementation of action plans in various critically polluted areas.”

According to the report prepared by the Board, the “main pollution sources of concern are industries, municipal solid waste, biomedical waste, e-waste and domestic waste.

The action plan hence includes mainly proposals for upgradation of existing pollution control facilities in the critically polluted area, common treatment facilities, common biomedical waste management facility, municipal solid waste management and e-waste management,” said the report by S. D. Jeyaprasad, chairman of the Kerala Board.

The short-term measures proposed by the Board include “industrial pollution control, monitoring arrangement and demarcation of areas” which require Rs. 182.4 crore. In the long-term measures, common effluent treatment plant, common pipeline for treated effluent, electricity supply improvement and continuous monitoring of water and ambient air quality have been suggested.

Telemetric linkage, mobile units for air and water quality monitoring, patrolling–cum–emergency response squad, sewerage and sewage treatment plant for Kakkanad, sewerage and sewage treatment system for the Greater Kochi area, rejuvenation of canals, remediation of contaminated sites, incinerators, e– waste treatment and disposal facility have also been proposed as long-term measures.

A water supply scheme to Eloor-Edayar area, health studies, construction of two bridges at north and south of Ernakulam, municipal solid waste management system, biomedical waste treatment facility, Liquefied Natural Gas-bunks and vehicles, development of green belt and augmentation of infrastructure of the Board have found place in the mitigation measures. It is estimated that it would require around Rs. 1,462 crore for the implementation.

Besides the proposals mooted by the Board, industries have agreed to spend Rs. 150 crore on their own for pollution control measures, the Board chairman has stated.

The implementation of the proposed action plan would enable the Greater Kochi area to address the environmental related issues in a more effective manner and make it a model, the action plan hoped.

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