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Friday, 08 December 2017 16:10

Centre sanctions Rs 571 crore for Deonar waste-to-energy plants

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If all goes according to plan, the BMC, armed with funds from the Centre, will scientifically treat the towering mounds of garbage at Deonar dumping ground and clear the 132 hectares of land within 10 years.

The Centre has sanctioned Rs 571 crore for the proposed two waste-to-energy plants at Deonar dumping ground. The BMC will have to match the grant for setting up of the plants. The power plants are expected to come up over the next three years.

On Thursday, the state urban development department issued a government resolution (GR) notifying that the central funds will be made available in two tranches.

Sanjay Mukherjee, additional municipal commissioner in-charge of projects, said the BMC has modified its waste-to-energy plant proposal in the light of the fact that the quantum of garbage reaching dumping grounds has reduced by 1,000 metric tonnes per day and is further expected to reduce by another 800-1,000 metric tonnes.

The BMC, over the last four years after the Bombay high court stayed all new constructions in the city unless it finds a solution to its waste problem, upgraded its systems to stop manipulation of garbage weight by contractors. This has brought down the garbage going to the dumping grounds from 8,000-odd metric tonnes to 7,500-7,200 metric tonnes per day. Since October, BMC has mandated bulk generators to process and dispose of their waste. This is expected to further reduce the quantum of garbage going to the dumping grounds.

At present, Kanjurmarg dump processes 3,500 metric tonnes per day, which will go up to 4,500 metric tonnes, and is eventually planned to handle all the garbage generated in the city. Around 1,500 metric tonnes will go to Deonar for the waste-to-energy plant.

"The calorific value of the garbage generated in the city is very poor and it has 70% moisture. The earlier plan of a 25MW plant to process 3,000 metric tonnes of garbage per day has been dropped," said Mukherjee.

The income-profit from the plant has also been done away with. Instead there will be two waste-to-energy plants, each processing 750 metric tonnes per day and generating 10 MW. The plants will be implemented on a design-build-operate-maintenance basis. No technology has been specified, but one of the six technologies approved by the Union urban development ministry will be considered, said Mukherjee.

Mukherjee said the estimate for the two plants is yet to be prepared. BMC has asked for a representative each from the Union environment and forests and climate change ministry and the urban development ministry to provide technical support for the project.

While the BMC had informed the Centre that it does not require the funds, the latter insisted that the civic body apply, and it did so with its modified plan.

Mukherjee said the emphasis is now on scientifically treating the waste and clearing the land. This will be done through biomining. Tenders have been awarded for the Mulund dumping ground, which is spread over 25 hectares, and will be a pilot to be replicated at Deonar.

"Lessons learnt at Mulund will be incorporated for Deonar," said Mukherjee. Biomining will generate construction debris, metals and inert material. The construction debris and metal will be recycled, while the inert material will be used to reclaim land elsewhere, he added.

The BMC has proposed construction of a 300-acre park at Cuffe Parade through reclamation as also the coastal road.

Both Mulund and Deonar have been marked as dumping grounds in the draft DP-2034 submitted to the state government for final approval. "But once the Deonar land is cleared a decade later, the government of the day may choose to change land use," said an official.

An activist said the BMC needs to concentrate on strictly implementing waste segregation. "The BMC has failed to collect segregated waste. Several housing societies segregate waste, but the civic body is simply not able to put in place a mechanism to collect it. This would resolve so many garbage-related problems," added the activist.

Additional Info

  • News Section: Bio Energy News
  • Month: December
  • Year: 2017
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