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news details
PCB miserably fails to implement SWM rules
5/23/2019 11:20:22 PM
Early Times Report
SRINAGAR, May 23: As municipal solid waste management is becoming a challenging task for civic authorities across the state especially in Srinagar and Jammu cities , the J&K State Pollution Control Boards (SPCB) has miserably failed to implement Solid Waste Management Rules (SWM Rules 2016).
As per rule number 16 of Solid Waste Rules of 2016 state pollution control boards have to work closely with civic bodies like Municipal Corporations , Municipal Councils / Committees across all the states of India.
The SWM Rules 2016 are operational in Jammu & Kashmir from last more than 3 years but till PCB has hardly been found actively doing this job within the municipal limits of Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) , Jammu Municipal Corporation (JMC) or any other municipal authority under Directorate of Urban Local Bodies.
During a workshop at Institute of Management Public Administration and Rural Development (IMPARD) last year several officers of SMC and various ULB's said that PCB officials hardly approach them to implement Solid Waste Rules of 2016.
As per the Solid Waste Management Rules 2016 , State Pollution Control Board (PCB) has to monitor environmental standards and adherence to conditions as specified under the Schedule I and Schedule II for waste processing and disposal sites and to examine the proposal for authorization and make such inquiries as deemed fit, after the receipt of the application for the same in Form I from the Municipal body or any other agency authorized by the municipal body. The PCB while examining the proposal for authorization, the requirement of consents under respective enactments and views of other agencies like the State Urban Development Department, the Town Planning Department, District Planning Committee or Metropolitan Area Planning Committee, as may be applicable. Airport or Airbase Authority, the Ground Water Board, Railways, power distribution companies, highway department and other relevant agencies shall be taken into consideration and they shall be given four weeks time to give their views, if any. The PCB is supposed to issue authorization within a period of sixty days in Form II to the municipal authority or an operator of a facility or any other agency authorized by municipal body stipulating compliance criteria and environmental standards as specified in Schedules I and II including other conditions, as may be necessary. As per SWM Rules 2016, the State Pollution Control Board shall, after giving reasonable opportunity of being heard to the applicant and for reasons thereof to be recorded in writing, refuse to grant or renew an authorization. In addition to it PCB has several other roles as well.
UNDP's recent report:
As per the recent report of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the second most serious problem that city dwellers face (after unemployment) is insufficient solid waste disposal. Whenever there is a discussion on Waste Management the municipal authorities raise an issue about non availability of garbage dumping -sites which is indeed a very valid reason. Towns and cities in Jammu & Kashmir have been chocked and land availability is very less. So creating new garbage dumpsites, landfills is a challenging task for Government agencies. From decades authorities in J&K state have not devised any mechanism to treat the garbage in cities and towns especially in Srinagar city. The garbage has only been lifted from one place and then dumped at another site. The Achan dumpsite in Srinagar is its classic example. As per Solid Waste Rules 2016 only 20 to 30 % waste is to be dumped at Landfill sites, but in Srinagar 100 % waste was being taken to Achan landfill site until recently when SMC hired some NGOs who are handholding people to segregate the waste at source. Due to lack of vehicles with SMC , sources say that segregated waste is again mixed when loaded in huge trucks for transportation to landfill site Achhan.
"It is not year 2016 when solid waste rules were brought in for the first time, but these rules were enforced more than 18 years back across India (Year 2000). The 2016 rules is sort of an amendment to Solid Waste Rules of 2000. The 18 year old rules also focused on source segregation of waste plus its processing, but our civic bodies never implemented those rules. The J&K Pollution Control Board (PCB) has been mum over more than a decade and still continues to remain tight lipped over the issue. The officials of Municipal authorities alone cannot alone face this self-created disaster " said Syed Nasarullah from Environmental Policy Group.
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