News Source : The Times of India, Oct 6, 2018, 04:57 IST
NEW DELHI: India annually needs land equivalent to ten times the area of Rashtrapati Bhawan estate to dump waste that urban areas generate. According to estimates, all the cities and towns generate about 52 million tonnes of solid waste every year.
“Solid waste is the biggest challenge. We would require 1,250 hectares every year, which is 4×3 sq km area for dumping garbage, if we don’t push complete management of the municipal waste. Because of the increased focus we have been able to push the share of garbage that is processed to about 37%,” said urban affairs secretary D S Mishra at a conference on the occasion of World Habitat day. Rashtrapati Bhawan estate is spread over 132 hectares.
Officials in the ministry also admitted that unless addressing the solid waste issue, Swachh Bharat won’t be a reality. “This is as important as building toilets and making areas open defecation free. Visible filth and dumped waste is a bigger concern. This can be addressed by the urban local bodies with people’s participation,” said an official.
Citing official data, Union urban affairs minister Hardeep Singh Puri said almost 88.4 megawatts of energy is generated from waste-to-energy projects and the waste-to-compost production was at 15.69 lakhs metric tonnes till mid-September this year. He added from source of generation to segregation and scientific disposal of waste, innovative approaches are needed which are environmentally sound, socially acceptable, technologically feasible and economically viable.