Kochi

Kochi: No action yet on discharge of untreated waste water into drains by hotels

A file photo of the Kalvathy canal in West Kochi.

A file photo of the Kalvathy canal in West Kochi. | Photo Credit: Vibhu H.

The government is yet to act tough against the illegal discharge of untreated waste water from hotels and restaurants into the municipal drains.

There is no official data on the number of hotels adhering to the guidelines for control of pollution and enforcement of environment norms in the State. As per the norms on effluent standards for hotels notified by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, owners of restaurants, hotels, eating joints, and banquet halls with a minimum seating capacity of 36 need to comply with waste management norms.

The National Green Tribunal had asked the State Pollution Control Boards in 2019 to ensure implementation of the guidelines prepared by the Central Pollution Control Board without diluting its intent and had asked for an updated data on the erring units. However, the Kerala State Pollution Control Board has no idea on the number of hotels and restaurants that are yet to set up effluent treatment plants.

“The board had issued notices to hotels and restaurants in Kasaragod asking the owners to set up necessary mechanisms to avoid illegal discharge of untreated waste water into drains. However, many hotels and restaurants having a minimum seating capacity of 36 are yet to comply with the guidelines,” said A.B. Pradeep Kumar, chairman of the Kerala State Pollution Control Board.

The Department of Local Self-Government had earlier admitted that about 95% of untreated waste is discharged in violation of rules into streams, drains, canals, lakes and rivers. Waterbodies have been heavily polluted owing to the illegal discharge of untreated waste water, it said.

Stating that it is not practical for each unit to have an effluent treatment plant, G. Jayapal, president of Kerala Hotel and Restaurant Association, said that several hotels and restaurants are functioning within a limited space. "The solution is to have a common effluent treatment plant in cities. Such a facility could be implemented under the initiative of local bodies concerned. We are also ready to chip in with necessary financial assistance," he said.


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Printable version | Jun 24, 2022 11:36:35 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/no-action-yet-on-discharge-of-untreated-water-into-drains-by-hotels/article65422263.ece