Skip to main content

Discharge from Gujarat chemical estates' effluent treatment plants is "much higher" than norm

By Our Representative
The latest figures released by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) suggest that the levels of industrial effluents discharge through the common effluent treatment plants (CETP) in chemical industrial estates across Gujarat continue to remain “high” and “worrisome”. Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti’s Rohit Prapati and six other environmental activists in a statement, quoting CPCB figures, have alleged, “More worrying as the situation has not changed much after the problem of industrial pollution first came to light in the nineties.”
According to them, “Even after huge investments, CETPs of Vapi, Ankaleshwar and Panoli, the final effluent treatment plant (FETP) of Ankleshwar, and the effluent channel project of Vadodara, are unable to meet the prescribed Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) norms.”
Giving details, the environmental activists said, Vapi CETP’s effluent discharge in its outlet was (as on September 5, 2013):
· COD (chemical oxygen demand) 630 i.e 252% more (GPCB norm is 250 mg/l)
· TDS (total dissolved solids) 10058 i.e 478.95% more (GPCB norm is 2100 mg/l), and
· BOD (biochemical oxygen demand) 56 i.e 186.67% more (GPCB norm is 30 mg/l).
T
he effluent discharged from Vapi’s CETP inlet was COD 2011,i.e. 201% more (GPCB norm is 1000 mg/l), and BOD 709 i.e. 177.25% more (GPCB norm is 400 mg/l).
As for Ankleshwar’s FETP, the CPCB data show that the effluent discharged from its outlet was COD 539 i.e 215.60% more (GPCB norm is 250 mg/l), BOD 128, i.e. 128% more (GPCB norm is 100 mg/li), and ammonical nitrogen NH3-N 191.7, i.e 383.40% more (GPCB norm is 50 mg/l).The the effluent discharged from inlet of FETP was COD 1393, i.e. 139.30% more (GPCB norm is 1000 mg/l), and BOD 336, i.e. 168% more (GPCB norm is 200 mg/l).
Ankleshwar’s CETP indicated that the effluent discharged from outlet of CETP was COD 671, i.e. 671% more (GPCB norm is 100 mg/l), and TDS 16091, i.e 766.24% more (GPCB norm is 2100 mg/l),
Panoli CETP’s effluent discharged from the Outlet showed COD 778, i.e. 778% more (GPCB norm is 100 mg/l), BOD 79 i.e. 263.33 % more (GPCB norm is 30 mg/l), and ammonical nitrogen NH3-N 64.6 i.e 129.20% more (GPCB norm is 50 mg/l).
The effluent channel project of Vadodara was discharging into estuary of river Mahi COD 879 (GPCB norm is 250 mg/l) i.e. 351.60% more, and TDS 7902 (GPCB norm is 5000 mg/l) i.e. 158% more.
The statement quotes the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986, to say that the government may issue “directions in writing to any person, officer or any authority and such person, officer or authority” for the “closure, prohibition or regulation of any industry, operation or process” or “stoppage or regulation of the supply of electricity or water or any other service.” It wonders, “While the law is clear, a question arises, why is the Gujarat government not using this power?”
Insisting that there should be immediate “halt industrial effluent discharge at Tadgam Sarigam Pipeline from CETP Vapi, from FETP, Ankleshwar,and ECP, Vadodara, etc.” the statement says, “None of the effluents still meet GPCB and CPCB norms”.
Suggesting that authorities have refused to fight pollution, the environmental experts say, “Despite the polluter pays principle, even in the nineties the then developing CETPs were highly supported by public money; 25% of the cost was state subsidy, 25% central subsidy, 30% loans from financial institute, and 20% directly paid by the industry. Now MoEF has declared that 50% cost will be borne by the Central government, 25% by State government and only 25% cost by the polluting industries. In essence, two-thirds of the proposed solution to the pollution generated for private profit is funded by public money.”
“Ironically”, they say, “This is happening when the state is withdrawing from its social responsibilities, such as education, health care and public transport. It seems paradoxical that the mounting laissez faire sentiment allowed the state to intervene on behalf of industries – which come to exist by virtue of concentrated resources and power – but not for the welfare of the common masses.”
They further say, “The basic questions that remain unanswered by state pollution control boards even now are:
· When the law does not allow discharge of industrial effluent which is not able to meet the prescribed GPCB norms in any water body, how do authorities allow polluting industries to do so endangering natural resources and public health since years?
· Why does the state government and the pollution control board refuse to answer questions about their failure in checking the discharge of industrial effluent and under what legal provisions do they allow the discharge of industrial effluent which is not able to meet the GPCB prescribed norms?
· How could the GPCB act on behalf of industries demanding the lifting of moratorium of Vapi, Ankleshwar and Vatva, and organize press conference for it, but not releasing the data of CETP?

Comments

TRENDING

Economist-editor's allegations on Narmada defamatory, baseless: Medha Patkar

Counterview Desk  In a reply directly addressed to well-known economist, journalist and columnist Swaminathan S Anklesaria Aiyar’s two articles in the Times of India (republished here and here ), calling them defamatory and wondering whether they were borne out of “ignorance or a conspiracy through political alliance”, Narmada Bachao Andolan leader Medha Pakar has said that the Narmada Sardar Saravar Project and the people's movement by adivasis, farmers, labourers, fish workers, potters and all the generations’ old communities from the river valley have suddenly come to be focused on, since the Gujarat elections are in the doorstep. She believes that while the “defamatory accusations with baseless conceptions such as ‘urban naxals’ are to be laughed at as the electoral strategic moves, one gets shocked to read the articles by a known old columnist like Swaminathan Ankalesaria Aiyar, published in a reputed daily like the Times of India." According to her, Aiyar’s two articl

Hindutva groups threat to peace, freedom: US diaspora groups tell FBI, other govt depts

By Our Representative  The Islamophobic and neo-Nazi ideology of Hindutva is a clear and present danger to peace and freedoms in the United States, a coalition of civil rights organizations told key officials of the U.S. Attorney General’s Office, the US Department of Justice (DOJ), and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) at a recent event in Edison, New Jersey. At the event titled United Against Hate, activists from American Muslims for Democracy (AMD), Hindus for Human Rights (HfHR) and Indian American Muslim Council (IAMC) made detailed presentations on this ideology of Hindu supremacism that is committing mass persecution of India’s Muslims and Christians and is rearing its ugly head in New Jersey as well as across the US. Attending the event were David S Leonardis, Special Investigator from the New Jersey Department of Law & Public Safety; Michael E Campion, Chief of the Civil Rights Division for the US Attorney General's Office; and Jonathan R Norbut of the U.S. Dep

Facing tough times, Rajasthan's Raika herders hold first-ever camel cheese festival

By Rosamma Thomas*  During the pandemic, the annual Pushkar camel fair in Rajasthan did not occur for fear of contagion; in 2022, it was called off again as lumpy skin disease affected cattle. At Sadri in Pali district, however, festivity continues – a two-day Camel Cheese Festival was held on November 23 and 24, 2022. Visitors spent time with the camel herds and their Raika, drank camel-milk tea with the herders and then returned to lunch at the Kumbhalgarh Camel Dairy, from where the Kumbhalgarh Fort is visible, to taste camel cheese. The Raika herders have been facing a tough time – camels are no longer used as much for transport or agriculture in Rajasthan. The animals have limited utility, but their milk is prized. Camel Charisma, the dairy at Kumbhalgarh, sends camel milk across the country to people who use it in therapy – for autistic children, improved blood sugar levels, or even to treat cancer. It is believed that the health benefits of the camel milk is because the animals

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

As polls approach, electorate 'failing to realise': Gujarat model is in a shambles

By DN Rath*  Gujarat assembly elections, scheduled to be held on 1 and 5 December 2022, is viewed by many as dress rehearsal for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections. When the suffering people have been pointing towards redressal of some local issues like absence of cleanliness, sewage problem, shortage of water supply, troubles created by stray cattle, insufficiency of streetlights, etc., it is evident that they are not fully aware that assembly elections are being fought on ideological standpoints and policy decisions. Nor is there the realisation that the state is in a shambles and the much-trumpeted ‘Gujarat model’ of development has proved to be a hoax. Like other states, the people of Gujarat are also back-broken by steep rise in prices to the tune of 400% in last 20 years. It is not that the government cannot control the spurt in prices if it so wants. Apart from the fact that price rise is an inevitability in a capitalist economy, artificial shortage triggered by massive hoarding, b

Shedding Hindu-Hindi-Hindustan? New Modi-Shah love for Tamil Nadu 'ignores' Periyar

By Sandeep Pandey*   The Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) or the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) have long argued for ‘Hindu-Hindi-Hindustan’, which into recent years has translated into a crisper English expression: ‘One Nation-One Religion-One Language’. Given this backdrop, it is curious that the BJP government has organised the Kashi Tamil Sangamam in Varanasi, the Prime Minister’s constituency. Why did the BJP and RSS feel the need for such an event? All Narendra Modi events are highly publicised and have multiple political objectives. It is never an innocuous religious/cultural event as it may appear from the face of it. Afterall, RSS calls itself a cultural organisation, but has never ceased to surprise us with its political designs. Tamil Nadu has a long history of opposing imposition of Hindi by Union governments. Periyar EV Ramasamy had opposed the idea of compulsory teaching in Hindi as far back as in 1937. The 1960s witnessed violent protests against Hindi in which a number

Amit Shah accused of inciting communal passion: Demand to postpone Gujarat polls

Counterview Desk  In an email representation to the Election Commission of India (ECI), Dr EAS Sarma, former secretary to the Government of India, has objected to the statement reported to have been made by Union home minister Amit Shah, who allegedly justified the 2002 Gujarat riots stating that certain sections of people “taught a lesson” to the rioters. Noting that the statement, if correct, “in effect implies those other than the law enforcement authorities had taken law into their hands”, Sarma says, “Shah's statement needs to be viewed by the ECI in conjunction with the reported fact that it was the Union Home Ministry that cleared the release of the eleven rape convicts in the Bilkis Bano case, directly related to the infamous Godhra incidents in 2002, which triggered the shameful sequence of events that shook the nation's conscience.” According to Sarma, if the statement is true, “I am constrained to draw the inevitable inference that it would have already impacted th

BJP poll gimmick? Bilkis Bano rape case 'pardon' vs Rajiv assassins' release

By Sandeep Pandey*  Supreme Court has released six convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case. This was bound to happen as earlier AG Perarivalan was released in the same case, setting a precedent. Even though four of them are Sri Lankans but a popular Tamil sentiment favoured the release of these convicts which is why Tamil political parties supported this and resolutions were passed by different governments in Tamil Nadu to his effect.  Rajiv Gandhi paid the price of sending Indian Peace Keeping Force to Sri Lanka where it got entangled with Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam and eventually the whole operation ended up is a fiasco.  However, most importantly Sonia and Priyanka Gandhi and probably Rahul too do not have any objections to the release of these convicts. In fact, Sonia Gandhi played an important role in getting the death sentence of the only lady among the convicts Nalini commuted to life term through the Tamil Nadu Governor. Priyanka visited Nalini in Vellore Jail and

Diminishing returns: Hydro projects contribute less than 10% of India's power generation

Counterview Desk  Pointing out that India’s hydro generation remains around 10% for the last six years, the advocacy group South Asia Network on Dams, Rivers and People (SANDRP) has said that power generation from hydropower projects continues to show diminishing returns, as has been the story close to three decades now. Yet, says SANDRP in a note, the Government of India continues to push large hydro by announcing a slew of additional subsidies for hydropower projects, more for political economy reason. In fact, attempts are being made to flog unviable hydropower projects with various kind of manipulations, illegalities and violations, it adds. Text : In last six years, from 2016-17 to 2021-22, India’s large hydropower projects (projects above 25 MW installed capacity) have contributed just around 10% of the total power generation, going as low as 9.68% in 2017-18. In fact, in three of these six years, large hydro contributed less than 10% and recovering only marginally in the rest,

Odisha survey reveals 56% children have not attended any classes post-pandemic

By Our Representative   The Learning Recovery Programme (LRP) has been taken up by the state government's Odisha School Education Programme Authority (OSEPA) to provide a learning opportunity to students to make up for losses in studies due to the closure of schools on account of the Covid-19 pandemic. However, lack of awareness among children and their parents and absence of robust monitoring have blocked its effective implementation, reveals a pilot fact-finding study conducted by the NGO Atmashakti Trust. The pilot study was conducted with school-going children in two blocks of the Nuapada district, where over 500 grassroots workers divided into 33 groups visited 68 schools in one day and interviewed 115 children to understand the implementation of LRP. The study was a part of its 26-day nationwide campaign, "Education Cannot Wait. Act Now!" which kickstarted on November 15, comprising Odisha, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, where