The Kerala State Pollution Control Board (PCB) has informed the National Green Tribunal (NGT) that works amounting to ₹1.48 crore have been initiated at the Brahmapuram dumping yard to check the possibility of contaminated ash percolating into the nearby Chitrapuzha and Kadambrayar.
The Southern Bench of the tribunal had earlier pulled up the board and the Kochi Corporation for the delay in initiating remedial measures to check water and air pollution following the massive fire at the site on March 2. It had also proposed scientific measures to reduce the impact of the fire that lasted for nearly 12 days.
In an updated status report dated August 7, the Chief Environmental Engineer of the board in Ernakulam stated that about 50,000-sq.m. area was covered using tarpaulin to prevent seepage of rainwater into the burnt waste heaps as part of primary work. Two bunds were constructed to restrain the flow of toxic ash mixed with rainwater to the downstream of Chitrapuzha.
It included a primary clarifier with restraining bunds for sedimentation of burnt ash particles and collection of floating objects. The second bund was constructed on the downstream of the first bund and exposed to phytoplasma plant, which will filter dissolved ashes and heavy metals to further purify the water before reaching the waterbody. The area of primary clarifier is around 1,482 sq.m. while the secondary clarifier is about 800 sq.m.
The Bench had earlier asked the departments concerned to make a concerted effort to ensure that the health of the citizens is not affected by air and water-borne diseases owing to the presence of toxic waste at the Brahmapuram dumping yard following the fire on March 2.