Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Tuesday, Sep 24, 2002
Industry & Economy
In-principle nod for two toxic waste disposal sites
BANGALORE, Sept. 23
THE Centre has accorded in-principle clearance to two sites chosen by Karnataka to locate its common disposal facility (CDF) for hazardous wastes.
The two sites are Sidlaghatta in Kolar and Dobbespet near Tumkur.
Once the formal clearances are through, the State Pollution Control Board (PCB), which is the nodal agency for the CDF project as mandated by the Hazardous Waste (Handling & Management) Rules 1989 under the Environment Protection Act, will call for bids from the industry to operate the facility for 30 years at one of these sites.
Both the options were under consideration, for running it either in the BOO (build-own-operate) mode with private investment or as a government-built private O&M (operate & maintain) proposition, senior officials involved in the project told Business Line.
The board picked the sites based on satellite imagery data and proposed them to the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) in June 2000. It received an oral assurance from the Union Minister of Environment & Forests, Mr T.R. Baalu, during his visit here last week.
As per PCB estimates, Karnataka has over 1,000 units generating toxic wastes totalling nearly 75,000 tonnes a year. Of that, 9,000 tonnes including lead from batteries, waste oil, solvents, copper and other substances can be recycled; some 4,000 is incinerable and the remaining bulk of 60,000 tonnes will have to be treated and buried scientifically.
Listed among the hazardous wastes are industrial residues having cyanide, lead, cadmium, mercury, antimony, nickel, chromium, selenium, halogenated and non-halogenated hydrocarbons, dyes, paints, pigments, glue, printing ink, heavy metal bearing discharges, phenols, pesticides, asbestos, acids and alkalis.
The CDF will be a centralised mechanism to dispose of wastes safely and have provision for the three broad classes of waste. Some 40 industries are authorised by the MoEF to recycle certain waste. The wastes that are to be buried would be first rendered inert and safe.
The common disposal facility is planned as a comprehensive unit equipped for storage, incineration, labs and pre-treatment facilities. As per tentative plans, 80 acres of the 100-odd acre of land would be for the landfill and the rest would have a green buffer belt all around. Initially, however, only five of the 80 acre of land would be developed.
The exact mode of finance and transportation by the industries were being finalised, the officials said.
The disposal facility is estimated to cost Rs 30 crore and will be sustained through gate payments from industries that dump their wastes there. The Centre has promised to provide Rs 2 crore towards the facility.
The 125-acre site at Sidlaghatta is mostly barren and needs to be formally notified by the Directorate-General of Forests. The Dobbespet site of around 105 acre would be acquired by the Karnataka Industrial Areas Development Board (KIADB) for the PCB and may be developed for disposing of biomedical waste. The PCB will issue notifications for public hearing and bids will be called after the orders are received.
Under the rules, the number of disposal sites for each State depends on the quantity of toxic wastes it generates. "Ideally we would like to have one hazardous waste disposal facility in northern Karnataka and another in the South for easier logistics," the officials said.
The German State-owned technical aid agency, GTZ, has been making an inventory of the type, quantity and sources of hazardous wastes that are generated in the State. As the technology provider, it has committed DM 3 million so far for the project, while PCB would like it to enhance the quantum to partially meet asset creation costs also, they added.
Stories in this Section
The Hindu Group: Home | About Us | Copyright | Archives | Contacts | Subscription
Group Sites: The Hindu | Business Line | The Sportstar | Frontline | Home |
Copyright © 2002, The
Hindu Business Line. Republication or redissemination of the contents of
this screen are expressly prohibited without the written consent of
The Hindu Business Line