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Issue 33
, 2011
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CPCB seeks details of pollution control measures from Jindal Ecopolis

Source: The Pioneer, New Delhi, June 22, 2011, Date: , 2011

The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has sought clarification from Jindal Ecopolis, the waste management company setting up a waste-to-energy plant at Okhla, saying that it would not be permitted to operate if the company fails to provide technical details about pollution control at the incineration plant.

It may be noted that Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit has already made it clear that the Delhi government would continue to pursue construction of the plant promoted by Jindal Ecopolis.

In a note, CPCB said that the project proponent is required to provide more technical details rather than project outlines. “The project proponent should provide realistic figures on quality of residues and other waste streams generated. Complete details of control facilities need to be provided to assess the adequacy of the same. The project proponent should submit complete technical details of each process unit, including pollution facilities, to assess the adequacy of the system based on technology aspects,” it said.

The CPCB further said that aspects of operational limitations have to be critically reviewed. “For instance, it is required to understand how the environmental issues have been addressed or managed in case of temporary shutdowns associated with operation of boilers and other equipment,” said CPCB, directing that the next meeting can be held after submission of the details by the proponent and studying the information pertaining to the actual project being implemented on ground.

Residents of Jamia Nagar, along with NGOs, have been protesting against the setting up of the waste-to-energy plant at Okhla, saying that the project is in contravention of a Supreme Court order banning the technology. The toxic emissions from plants of this type have been known to cause birth deformities, cancer, respiratory ailments and hormonal problems.

Experts say the government could not have picked a worse location for a plant that they claim will emit dioxins, furans, nox, sox, respirable particulate matter and other toxic chemicals associated with waste-to-energy plants that are designed to run on “rubbish-derived fuel” (RDF). Within a radius of about half-a-mile of the plant, which is being set up by Jindal Ecopolis as a public-private partnership, there are four major health facilities: the Indraprastha Apollo Hospital, Holy Family Hospital, the Fortis Heart Institute and the Cheshire Homes for the sick and elderly.

Also falling within a couple of miles are the Jamia Millia Islamia University, the Okhla bird sanctuary, residential areas such as Maharani Bagh and New Friends Colony and densely populated residential areas like Haji Colony and Ghaffar Manzil.