A six-decade-old “legacy” of garbage mounds is one of the two most dizzying problems the Capital faces in solid waste management, the Lieutenant-Governor told the Supreme Court on Monday.

The second problem is daily waste generation. The L-G produced statistics to show the Supreme Court that lack of land to establish new landfill sites has choked the Capital, which produces 10,200 Tonnes Per Day (TPD) of municipal solid waste.

Of the 10,200 TPD, 5,300 TPD waste is scientifically disposed of in the three waste-to-energy plants of the three municipal corporations of north, south and east Delhi.

Scientific disposal

Appearing before a Bench led by Justice Madan B. Lokur, Additional Solicitor General Pinky Anand and advocate Saudamini Sharma said a road map for scientific disposal of the remaining daily waste of 4,900 TPD has been prepared.

Ms. Anand, for the L-G, submitted that two new waste-to-energy plants with capacity of 3,500 MT are being set up at Bhalswa (1,500 TPD) by the North civic body and at Tehkhand (2,500 TPD) by the South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC), respectively.

The capacity of existing waste-to-energy plant at Ghazipur is being enhanced by 1,000 metric tonnes (MT) and at Okhla capacity is being enhanced by 500 TPD.

Projects completion

“All these projects will be completed in two years time i.e. by August 2020. After completion of these projects, it is expected that no untreated garbage will be dumped at the landfill sites,” the L-G said.

Lack of land to establish new landfill sites have seen the garbage mounds in Ghazipur, Bhalswa and Okhla sites become a perennial headache.

No alternative site

The Ghazipur landfill site in the east has an accumulated garbage of 13 million metric tonnes (MT). Its steep slope of trash makes it dangerous for men and machinery. The stench is all-pervading.

The landfill site reached the saturation point way back in 2002. However, with no alternative site to dump rubbish, the East Delhi Municipal Corporation has continued to use the site for the last 16 years. The height of the Ghazipur landfill site ought to have been a permissible 45-60 feet, but the mountain of garbage is 180-foot tall.

Similarly, Bhalswa landfill site reached saturation point in 2008. It has an accumulated garbage of 15 million MT. It is 150-foot tall. The site is still in operation and presently about 2,000 TPD is dumped there. Again, finding alternative land is a problem for the North Delhi Municipal Corporation.

The Okhla site, the third landfill site in the Capital, is highly combustible with the presence of leachate and methane gas in it. Again zero land to establish a new landfill site has forced the SDMC to continue to use it despite it having reached its saturation point a decade ago. The garbage heap is currently about 160-foot tall and there is six million metric tonnes of rubbish in it.

Source: Read Full Article