PCB assesses environmental compensation of ₹13.31 crore on Kochi Corporation

The Kerala State Pollution Control Board (PCB) has assessed a total environmental compensation of ₹25.4 crore on the Kochi Corporation and the five municipalities of Kalamassery, Aluva, Angamaly, Thrikkakara, and Thripunithura for their failure to comply with the provisions of the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016.

The compensation assessed for the Kochi Corporation is ₹13.31 crore, while the figures for the five municipalities are ₹2.77 crore for Kalamassery, ₹1.72 crore for Aluva, ₹1.96 crore for Angamaly, ₹2.92 crore for Thrikkakara, and ₹2.72 crore for Thripunithura as on July 31, 2020, according to a copy of the report seen by The Hindu. The report was filed by the PCB before the Principal Bench of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) in its reply to the tribunal’s order dated July 3 on non-compliance with Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016 at the Brahmapuram solid waste processing plant, resulting in environmental pollution and threat to public health.

The case, which was listed for Tuesday, is now slated to be heard by the third week of September.

The Bench led by Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel (Chairperson) had pointed out that it was the responsibility of the PCB to initiate prosecution and recover compensation for such failures, failing which the Chairman and the Member Secretary of the board may be liablefor their failure.

Prosecution measures

The PCB Chairman has now authorised the Chief Environmental Engineer, Ernakulam, to initiate prosecution proceedings against the Kochi Corporation based on the tribunal’s directive on the Brahmapuram case under Section 19 of the Environment (Protection) Act 1986 and Section 49 of the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 for unscientific handling of waste at Brahmapuram.

A complaint will be filed in the respective magistrate court against the civic body for violation of the provisions of the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016 and Section 24 of Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974.

The order issued on July 31 said the corporation was simply practising land disposal of both biodegradable and non-biodegradable waste. Nothing was seen in recent visits to manage fresh waste, and it was disposed of over old waste.

Non-biodegradable waste was found being disposed of at another place, where fire accidents had occurred twice earlier, it said.

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Printable version | Sep 27, 2020 10:53:30 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/pcb-assesses-environmental-compensation-of-1331-crore-on-kochi-corporation/article32272477.ece

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