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Centre flags Mumbai's first waste-to-energy plant

 Mumbai first waste-to-energy plant
Submitted by Tanveer Padode on January 12, 2022

The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change has granted Environment Clearance (EC) to Mumbai's first and upcoming waste-to-energy (WTE) plant at Deonar in the Govandi area. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has now requested final approval from the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB).

BMC plans to construct the plant, which will have a capacity of 600 mt per day, on 12.19 hectares of land for Rs 504 crore, at the city's oldest dumping ground. The plant will generate 4 MW of electricity in addition to incineration of waste in the dumping ground. On December 7, the project received the required EC. Its copy, on the other hand, was recently uploaded to the BMC website.

The Deonar dumping ground, which was established in 1927, covers 120 hectares. Nearly 600 mt of the 7,000 mt of garbage generated daily in Mumbai is dumped in Deonar.

The Maharashtra State Environment Impact Assessment Authority (SEIAA) has approved BMC proposals subject to certain conditions, including the use of fly ash generated by the plant for brick manufacturing and road construction, air pollution control measures, and separate funds to implement the environment management plan.

It has also ordered the BMC to establish an exclusive Environment Management Cell, as well as a groundwater level monitoring system and measures to prevent groundwater pollution.

The plant's construction will take about 40 months to complete. The BMC has also set aside Rs 12.40 crore for the implementation of mitigation measures under the environment management plan.

Locals and environmentalists opposed the project, citing concerns about pollution and health issues in the area caused by the plant. A public hearing for the project was held on April 27, 2021, as required by the 2006 Environment Impact Assessment Notification, which requires public consultation for draft impact assessments.

According to a report published in 2018 by the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), the first such plant was established in Timarpur, Delhi, in 1987, but was quickly shut down.