Damages of ₹1.4 crore assessed for pollution by defunct Edayar unit

A joint committee appointed by the National Green Tribunal has assessed an environmental compensation of ₹1.4 crore on the now defunct Sree Sakthi Paper Mills in the Edayar industrial region here for non-disposal of plastic waste and keeping it in its premises for long.

The amount has been assessed for the total period of violation extending to 1,188 days from November 2016 to March 2020. The committee has also estimated ₹72.8 lakh as environmental damages/cost of plastic pollution owing to the plastic remains in the soil/site.

Sree Sakthi Paper Mills was closed in 2016 after the State Pollution Control Board found that untreated effluents were being discharged from the industrial unit into the river. The industry was situated in 8.75 acres and about 81 cents were utilised for dumping plastic waste and incinerator ash generated from the processes.

The Southern Bench of the tribunal had asked the joint committee to assess the damages to the environment caused on account of the violation committed by the company. The team consisted of experts representing the Central Pollution Control Board, National Environmental Engineering Research Institute, and Kerala State Pollution Control Board.

The committee has proposed a detailed study on the contamination of soil at the site on account of the heavy metals and other organic components. It had assessed the environmental compensation from the date of issue of the first notice for the removal of the plastic dump. The report submitted by the joint committee before the tribunal stated that the Kerala Enviro Infrastructure Ltd at Ambalamughal had removed the plastic dump by March last year.

S. Rajkumar, who was managing director of the company, said that the plastic dump had been cleared and it would be now used as parking area for the vehicles entering the site. The problems at Sree Sakthi Mills had started after the expansion projects initiated in 2012 and various local-level protests and issues had contributed to the closure of the company in 2016, he said. Mr. Rajkumar said that the unit had been converted into a warehousing facility under a new company name.

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Printable version | Jan 23, 2022 10:17:06 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/damages-of-14-crore-assessed-for-pollution-by-defunct-edayar-unit/article37778528.ece

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