In another step towards turning green, the Ambattur industrial estate has come forward to treat effluent discharged by a section of its units.

The industrial estate, which boasts of being a forerunner among industrial estates in implementing green initiatives, already has two sewage-treatment plants. The facilities, with a combined capacity to treat five million litres a day, are functioning in the estate’s south and north phases.

With a goal to make the estate ‘clean and green’ during its golden jubilee year, the Ambattur industrial estate manufacturers’ association (AIEMA) laid a foundation stone for the common effluent-treatment plant that is to come up on a one-acre plot on Monday.

This is considered a big leap forward as it would put an end to some of the unit holders discharging effluent into the storm water drain network or sewage pipeline.

Members of the AIEMA said about 100 small and medium enterprises in the estate, engaged in electroplating and bright steel bar manufacturing, discharge effluent. Besides these units, the Rs.4-crore plant with a capacity to treat 150 litres a day is also expected to cater to units located within a radius of 25 km.

“We are ready to treat effluent brought in tankers from as far as Thirumazhisai. The industries could either obtain the treated water and reduce the burden on fresh water, or it would be used by the association for gardening purposes,” said a member.

AIEMA’s president P.S. Ramesh said that the association had signed a memorandum of understanding with a Ludhiana-based company to implement the project within eight to 10 months. “The industrial waste from automobile units is not hazardous but could pollute the groundwater. We are already operating two coolant/waste oil-recovery plants with a capacity to treat 1,000 litres a day. We offer the recovered coolant to the industries or to the dealers. We want to be self-sufficient through such initiatives,” he said.

There are also plans to use the treated water for 3,000 saplings to be planted across the estate. The association aims at making the estate free of plastic and pollution and is implementing eco-friendly projects in a phased manner.

“Sometimes, it is hard to dispose oil-soaked cotton waste and grinding sludge in a landfill site near Gummidipoondi. We are trying to collect and send them to cement plants,” he said.

As collection of industrial and plastic waste is a challenge, modalities are being worked out for their collection. The collected plastic waste would be recycled into crude oil, said a member.

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