Pollution is one of the biggest hazards affecting the environment, human lives and is a serious concern for everyone. There is a need to take all possible measures to prevent JK’s environment and ecology getting polluted on a large scale.
Coordinator, Chief Minister’s Grievance Cell, Tassaduq Mufti today said this during his meeting with senior officers of J&K State Pollution Control Board (SPCB) to discuss issues pertaining to pollution.
The meeting was attended by Secretary SPCB Sameer Bharti, Chairman SPCB Ravi Kesar, Director SPCB Sayeed Nadeem, other senior officers from SPCB and civil society members.
During the meeting, many concerns related to increasing pollution level in the environment were discussed in length including pollution caused by cement factories, brick kilns and stone crushers, pollution of water bodies by untreated sewage, untreated solid waste, status of Bio-Medical Waste Disposal, Solid Waste Management, impact of ban on plastic carry bags, Electronic Waste disposal, containment of drinking water sources by pesticides and waste of Sewage treatment plants, implementation of noise pollution code in sensitive areas, infrastructure put in place for water, air quality monitoring and others.
Members from civil society also raised various concerns to draw the attention of the government towards putting a check on activities leads to increase pollution level in the environment.
Terming Environment Pollution a threat to human as well as other living beings, Tassaduq Mufti asked the State Pollution Control Board (PCB) to work effectively and efficiently for eliminating industrial pollution, air pollution, water pollution and the over pollution in the ambience.
While discussing the issue of pollution caused by cement factories and brick kilns, officers of PCB informed the meeting that guidelines have been already issued to install on-line Continuous (24×7) Monitoring Devices for better monitoring.
Tassaduq Mufti asked the PCB officials to conducts surprise inspection of cement industries, stone crushing units and other industrial units under Environmental Surveillance Squad and take necessary measures to control the pollution in such areas.
He asked to ensure that all cement plants install Reverse Pulse Jet Bag Filter and other necessary gadgets. He also asked for looking more advanced technology being used in other countries to control the air pollution.
Issue of brick kilns being operated illegally and contributing in releasing emissions in the air was discussed. The officers informed that the District Level Committee headed by Deputy Commissioner, issue the licenses to brick kilns. Further they said that the District Magistrate has conferred with the power to shut down the operations of brick kilns running illegally.
Tassaduq Mufti asked the PCB to provide inputs so that a mechanism can be put in place to check establishment of illegal brick kilns.
Discussing the issue of containment of water sources by Sewage treatment plant waste and other means, Tassaduq Mufti asked the concerned officers to take all necessary measures to save these water bodies from getting polluted. PCB officers informed the meeting that monitoring of water quality is being done on regular basis and reports are being sent to Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).
PCB was asked to devise a plan to deal with the waste coming out from the House boats so that Dal Lake water can be stopped from getting polluted.
Regarding the Bio-Medical Waste Disposal, Tassaduq Mufti said that it is very important that this waste is disposed properly using latest techniques and asked PCB to ensure that Medical institutions install disposal systems if not than should use Common Bio-Medical Waste Disposal facility.
Solid Waste Management Programme needs to be implemented on ground properly as the solid waste is hazardous for clean environment and to deal with this peoples cooperation is must, Tassaduq Mufti said adding that public especially students participation is important for sensitizing about the increasing environmental issues.
“We need to take this on mission mode so that awareness and understanding can be generated among common people regarding environment and its protection which will further helps in eliminating all kinds of pollution in the environment to keep it clean”, Tassaduq Mufti said.
The meeting also discussed the impact of government ban of plastic carry bags. PCB was asked to get tough on this and to ensure implementation of laws in letter and spirit without any compromise.
“Measures need to be taken to curb the still prevalent use of polythene bags that pose serious risk to environment and wildlife by strict enforcement of laws on ground”, Tassaduq said.
Other issues related to noise pollution, illegal mining activities, effect of pesticides polluting drinking water, dumping of household waste, rampant soil excavation, electronic-waste disposal system were also discussed in the meeting and necessary instructions were passed to PCB for devising out a mechanism to deal with this highly important human concern.