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Posted at: Jan 12, 2019, 8:05 AM; last updated: Jan 12, 2019, 8:05 AM (IST)

Drones to identify polluters in Baddi industrial area

Drones to identify polluters in Baddi industrial area
Photo for representational purpose only.

Ambika Sharma
Tribune News Service
Solan, January 11

To tighten the noose around violators, officials of the State Pollution Control Board (SPCB) have pressed drones into service to monitor the activities of industrial units in the Baddi-Barotiwala-Nalagarh (BBN) industrial belt.

Open dumping of municipal solid waste into nullahs and contamination of water bodies with sewage have become a cause of concern for the officials as this is polluting the Sirsa river.

This river stretch has been rated under Priority-III criteria by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) in a recent assessment based on the biological oxygen demand (BoD), which is the dissolved oxygen needed by organisms to break down organic material, content. It was found to be between 8 to 16 mg per litre as against the safe limit of 3 mg per litre.

Since the National Green Tribunal has directed the SPCB to devise an action plan and improve its water quality within a period of six months, the officials are keen to identify the source of pollution and take effective remedial steps.

SPCB’S Regional Officer Avinash Sharda said since villages, which were outside the municipal limits, were bereft of any waste disposal plant and large quantities of solid waste were found dumped into the nullahs, presence of a large migrant population further added to the malaise and sewage waste was also found contaminating the river water.

A thorough surveillance of the area was undertaken with the help of drones in the last two days, which helped identify such nullahs at Kishenpura and Manpura villages. Apart from this, about five pharmaceutical and cosmetic manufacturing units were also found lax in complying with various norms as untreated effluents had been let out by them surreptitiously in this industrial belt.

Sharda said a recommendation to disconnect power of at least five such units had been made to the board’s member secretary as they were found violating the laid-down norms during the two-day monitoring. Since improving the water quality requiresa coordinated approach, officials from various other departments like the IPH and civic bodies have been roped in to implement an action plan devised by the board in letter and spirit.

With a Rs 17-crore sewage treatment plant (STP) being set up at Nalagarh and another worth Rs 34 crore being set up at Baddi along with a separate solid waste management plant, the officials hoped that water quality would improve considerably once these plants were commissioned.

5 units face power disconnection

  • Open dumping of municipal solid waste into nullahs and contamination of water bodies with sewage have become a cause of concern for officials of the State Pollution Control Board (SPCB)  as this is polluting the Sirsa river.
  • Since the National Green Tribunal has directed the SPCB to devise an action plan and improve its water quality within a period of six months, the officials are keen to identify the source of pollution and take effective remedial steps.
  • Disconnection of power supply to five units for violating the laid-down norms has been recommended.

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