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CM: solid waste management policy will be ready soon

Panaji: The Goa Waste Management Corporation (GWMC) has decided to come out with Goa Solid Waste Management Policy 2019 in order to take care of all kinds of waste such as medical, hazardous waste, e-waste and bio-medical waste.

A meeting of the board of directors of the Corporation chaired by Chief Minister Pramod Sawant was held on Tuesday.

Speaking to reporters after the meeting, the Chief Minister said that the new Goa Solid Waste Management Policy 2019 will be finalised soon.

“We already have solid waste treatment facility at Saligao. Likewise, the government will be setting up such plants at Cacora, Baiguinim and Verna,” Sawant said adding that Goa will be the first state in the country to treat all kinds of waste in the near future.

The Chief Minister also said that a discussion was held at the meeting on resolving the Sonsoddo garbage dump issue. He said that the meet also decided to float a fresh tender for collection of plastic waste from national highways, state highways and other district roads.

The Corporation has also agreed to put on hold the expansion of the capacity of Saligao solid waste treatment facility to 250 tonne per day until the work on the proposed garbage treatment plant at Baiguinim commences after completion of all the formalities including environmental clearance (EC) from Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change.

Calangute MLA Michael Lobo, who attended the meeting, strongly objected to the expansion of the capacity of Saligao waste treatment plant till such time as the Baiguinim treatment plant gets the EC and a related tender is issued. “CM has understood my plea,” Lobo told reporters after the meeting of the Corporation. The MLA also said that he has suggested that in future, GWMC should be made the sole agency for providing solutions to garbage problems in village panchayats and municipal areas. “Currently, the directorate of panchayats floats tenders to procure dustbins and other equipment to handle garbage for village panchayats and in the same manner, Goa State Urban Development Agency is floating tenders for municipal councils. Now, we have decided to authorise GWMC as the government agency for this purpose,” Lobo said.

The decision of the government to amend the existing law to curb the menace of scrapyards was also discussed in the meeting. It was decided to include paddy fields in the existing law for curbing illegal scrapyards in the state. The District Collectors will have the power to demolish such scrapyards that come up in coastal zone regulation areas, eco-sensitive zones and khazan lands without prior notice. Now, as per the proposed amendment, setting up of a scrapyard in paddy fields will be a cognisable offence and Collector shall demolish such yards without any prior notice to the concerned.

It has also been decided to hold a public hearing on July 17 for the setting up of Baiguinim garbage treatment plant. 

The Corporation has also given approvals for modifying the Goa Waste (Scrap) Recycling Units Scheme 2010, floating tender for remediation and disposal of separated fractions and providing monsoon cover for refused derived fuel dumps and for utilising funds of GWMC for construction/installation of bio-digester based individual household latrine under open defecation free scheme.

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