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‘Finding places for garbage disposal a challenge’

Staff Reporter
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Roadmap for garbage management ready, says Siddaiah

(From left) Sharath Chandra, former Chairman, Karnataka State Pollution Control Board; Siddaiah, Commissioner, Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike; Almitra Patel, solid waste management expert; Ananth Kumar, MP; and Mayor D. Venkatesh Murthy at a conference in Bangalore on Sunday.
(From left) Sharath Chandra, former Chairman, Karnataka State Pollution Control Board; Siddaiah, Commissioner, Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike; Almitra Patel, solid waste management expert; Ananth Kumar, MP; and Mayor D. Venkatesh Murthy at a conference in Bangalore on Sunday.

What after January 31? This is the big question before the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), which has been battling a crisis in solid waste management for months now.

BBMP Commissioner Siddaiah conceded that the “greatest challenge” before the civic body was finding suitable places to dispose of garbage after the deadline imposed by the communities around the Mandur and Mavallipura landfills.

He was speaking at a conference on “Solutions to impending public health crisis through good governance in solid waste management”, organised by the Namma Bengaluru Foundation and Adamya Chetana, a non-governmental organisation, here on Sunday.

“We are aware that the problem is self-inflicted. However, we have drawn up a clear roadmap for garbage management now, unlike a couple of months ago.

“The BBMP is confident of resolving the crisis soon. Inspection of new sites to dump garbage is only part of the immediate solution and the government is not exploring the possibility of setting up new landfills as an alternative,” he added.

Offering the prospect of removing garbage cess as an incentive for cooperation from the public to take up segregation of waste at source, he said.

“The government has been able to find some places where garbage from that area can be segregated.

“But, this is not possible everywhere due to paucity of space.

“Bulk generators, especially hotels, malls and wedding halls, will be mandatorily made to manage their waste themselves,” he added.

Hope

Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) chairman Vaman Acharya said that the government had received proposals from eight private parties willing to set up their processing plants on their own land.

“The government should not delay in according permission to them,” he said and added that it is important to involve farmers in the process of managing wet waste.

Bad practices

Almitra Patel, member of the Supreme Court Committee on Solid Waste Management, said that bad practices in managing waste will only result in new landfills, which the city does not need.

Stressing the need for effective recycling and ward-level segregation, she said that this would ensure that only inerts that constitute a mere 10 per cent of the total garbage generated go to the landfills.

Rajeev Chandrashekar, MP, said that the garbage crisis has nothing to do with development, but more with lack of planning. The situation must be treated as a public health emergency and the Bangalore Metropolitan Governance Bill must be passed immediately, he added.

MP Ananth Kumar suggested the setting up of a dedicated Solid Waste Management Committee within the purview of the BBMP to focus on the garbage menace.


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