Bio-mining to remediate hazardous waste in Pammal

NGT orders use of this method after residents’complaints

December 21, 2017 01:05 am | Updated 01:05 am IST - Chennai

The southern bench of the National Green Tribunal has directed the Commissioner of Pammal municipality to start bio-mining of hazardous waste dumped in private land in four survey numbers in Pammal Village by January 2018.

In bio-mining, micro-organisms are used to leach and remove metals from their growth medium.

Judicial member Justice M.S. Nambiar also directed that the process of installation of the machinery should be completed within 90 days, before March 31, 2018, and the entire bio-mining process should be finished by December 31, 2018.

“The lands after completion of the process shall be handed over on or before January 31, 2019,” Justice Nambiar said. The case pertains to the dumping and burning of hazardous waste in private land in survey numbers 148, 150, 152 and 153 of Pammal Village. The residents’ associations of Mahalakshmi Nagar, Renganathapuram and Visweshwarapuram, had moved the NGT seeking a direction to the authorities to remove the solid and hazardous waste, and to restore the land to the original condition.

The municipality submitted before the NGT that the only way to remove the waste was through bio-mining and sought permission to install the machinery in the private land. The applicants agreed to it but sought an order from the Tribunal to ensure that the work is completed on time.

Justice Nambiar passed an order laying down the time frame to finish the bio-mining process. “When the land is handed back to the rightful owners, it should be in a useable condition,” he said.

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