In a major issue raised by an environmentalist, UPPCB office of Gr Noida has asked the Jewar International Airport authorities to take up the matter of proper disposal of Construction & Demolition (C & D) waste as per the law.
In India the C & D waste disposal comes under the C & D Waste Management Rules, 2016 of Govt. of India.
With illegal constructions raised and being razed nowadays in several parts of Delhi-NCR and the rest of country, correct disposal of C & D waste has assumed importance like never before.
Gr Noida based environmentalist, Vikrant Tongad recently raised the important issue of C & D waste that will be generated due to demolition of hundreds of houses in villages that are being acquired for the Jewar International Airport project in Gr Noida area. The project is a flagship project of both the Centre and the UP Govt., but the Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Authority (YEIDA) that is overseeing the project, is apparently clueless about the method to be employed in disposing of the C & D waste—as per reply furnished to Tongad—that is likely to be generated soon when the village houses will come under the hammer.
Tongad has raised the issue over the online IGRS portal of Uttar Pradesh, wherein he has asked the YEIDA authorities about their disposal plans for the C & D waste that will be generated through demolition of village houses. The YEIDA has replied stating ‘that the authority is coming up with a new township. At present no C & D waste is being generated and whenever such waste will be generated an action plan for its disposal will be prepared.’
This answer by YEIDA that has several important projects in its kitty seems laughable and utterly immature. An authority that has the responsibility of handling an important project such as Jewar airport besides several other projects, does not have the wherewithal to dispose of the C & D waste.
Tongad has also drawn the attention of UP Pollution Control Board (PCB) at Gr Noida. The Gr. Noida PCB has written a letter to Jewar Airport authorities on Tongad’s complaint made to them. In the letter it has been stated, that the YEIDA has told the environmentalist that in the meantime the C & D waste will be utilized for/in a landfill site. Taking note of this the PCB, Gr Noida letter has directed the Jewar airport authorities to dispose of the C & D waste—to be generated—as per the C & D Waste Management Rules, 2016 of the Govt. of India.
These Rules clearly mention that “service providers will need to have in place a comprehensive waste management plan covering segregation, storage, collection, reuse, recycling, transportation and disposal of construction and demolition waste generated within their jurisdiction. It also points out the duties of local authority wherein such authority shall ‘issue detailed directions with regard to proper management of construction and demolition waste within its jurisdiction in accordance with the provisions of these rules and the local authority shall seek detailed plan or undertaking as applicable, from generator of construction and demolition waste; chalk out stages, methodology and equipment, material involved in the overall activity and final clean up after completion of the construction and demolition; seek assistance from concerned authorities for safe disposal of construction and demolition waste contaminated with industrial hazardous or toxic material or nuclear waste if any; shall make arrangements and place appropriate containers for collection of waste and shall remove at regular intervals or when they are filled, either through own resources or by appointing private operators.”
Thus, it is clear that the YEIDA should have had a C & D waste management policy in place and the same holds true for each & every authority in the country.
Tongad averred that wrongful disposal of the C & D waste can lead to contamination of water bodies and underground water apart from polluting the air. He rued the total lack of sensitivity displayed by the government authorities towards this aspect of mindless urbanization and its consequences that is sure to create problems for governmental agencies as well as citizens in the future.
–By Prasoon Pant