Underprepared NMC pushes garbage segregation to June 5

By Times Of India on 02 May 2017

NAGPUR: The state government has made garbage segregation at source (households, commercial establishments etc) mandatory from May 1 on the eve of Maharashtra Day. However, the Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) is not prepared for it and has proposed to launch garbage segregation at source from June 5 on the eve of World Environment Day.

The state's urban development department (UDD) headed by chief minister Devendra Fadnavis had issued a notification on April 29 directing all urban local bodies (ULBs) to begin garbage segregation at source from May 1. "Central government had launched Solid Waste Management Rules- 2016 making garbage segregation mandatory. ULBs should give training to its staff and aware mayor, corporators, self-help-groups, NGOs, social organizations, colleges' principals, schools' headmasters, representatives of residential and commercial associations etc about garbage segregation at source before May 1," the UDD said.

The UDD added that the garbage segregation at source was the responsibility of those generating the garbage. "ULBs should aware the generators (residential and commercial users) about their responsibility. ULBs should facilitate bins to all users. ULBs should not spend from Swachh Bharat Mission or the 14th planning commission funds for procurement of bins. Instead, it should ensure it under corporate social responsibility (CSR)," the UDD said.

The UDD has increased types of garbage segregation to three. Earlier, garbage segregation at source was of two types — wet and dry. Domestic hazardous waste has been added as third category. Therefore, the ULBs will have to facilitate three bins. The UDD has also finalized colour code — green for wet, blue for dry and red for domestic hazardous waste. ULBs will have to provide the bins as per colour code.

The UDD also said, "ULBs are responsible for collection of garbage separately and transport in covered vehicles. ULBs should store waste separately in a vehicle, if possible, or arrange vehicles separately for each type of waste. ULBs should try utilization of wet waste at source level itself or transport and produce compost, vermi-compost, bio-methane etc at centralized station. ULBs should recycle wet waste and dispose of domestic hazardous waste in scientific manner at a station to be developed over 20 kms from the urban localities," the UDD said.

The NMC had planned to launch garbage segregation at source project when it appointed private operator Kanak Resources Management Limited in February 2009. The project could not materialize till date. The civic body had launched the same project on pilot basis in Laxmi Nagar residential locality a year ago. This project, too, failed to materialize.

NMC official from health department told TOI that the directives have been received only to train the staff about garbage segregation at source from May 1. "NMC is planning to launch it across the city on June 5 as per directives from the ministry of urban development (MoUD)," he said.

Under Swachh Bharat Mission, the NMC will have to achieve two milestones — open defecation free and Swachh City. Garbage segregation at source is necessary for achieving Swachh City.

ULBs can market, sale bio-organic fertilizer

The state's urban development department (UDD) has issued a notification giving powers of marketing and selling bio-organic fertilizer to urban local bodies (ULBs). Also, the UDD has given a brand name to the bio-organic fertilizer— Green Mahacity Compost— subject to some conditions.

The ULBs have been made mandatory to treat wet waste and produce compost, vermi-compost, bio-methane etc. Therefore, powers of marketing and selling compost also given with the latest notification.

The UDD said, "ULBs should first get test compost from Compost Control Laboratories of the government and inform director of state mission, Swachh Maharashtra Mission, before giving brand name to the compost."

Already, the NMC's private operator Hanjer Biotech has started to produce bio-organic fertilizer at solid waste treatment plant situated at Bhandewadi. The NMC, Hanjer and Rashtriya Chemicals and Fertilizer (RCF) had executed tripartite agreement as per which the RCF is collecting and selling the bio-organic fertilizer. However, the quantum of treatment is less than 200 of total 1,000 tonne.

The NMC can make use of the UDD's latest notification for remaining quantum.