Kerala flood leaves a 2,434-tonne mountain of waste

Here is another astounding figure to add to the story of devastating damage and loss.

Published: 11th September 2018 06:06 AM  |   Last Updated: 11th September 2018 06:06 AM   |  A+A-

Kerala floods

Kerala floods.(File | EPS)

Express News Service

ALAPPUZHA: Here is another astounding figure to add to the story of devastating damage and loss. The flood has generated around 2,434 tonnes — and counting — of waste, mainly plastic, beds, pillows, clothes and electronic waste.

The Clean Kerala Company (CKC), under the state government, collected this load from Alappuzha, Pathanamthitta, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Thrissur and Wayanad, said company senior assistant manager L K Sreejith. At 1,033 tonnes, Ernakulam district accounts for the largest amount of waste collected.

“Beds and pillows make up the bulk of the waste. We have also started the collection of e-waste, but only in Ernakulam because the Haritha Keralam Mission (HKM) is arranging camps in all panchayats to repair electronic and electric items, like televisions, fridges, washing machines and mixies. In Ernakulam district, we have collected around 1-tonne e-waste,” he said.

The e-waste is sent to a Hyderabad-based company for processing. Plastic bottles and waste which can be recycled are handed over to recycling companies enrolled under the CKC. Non-recyclable materials were handed over to shredding units under the CKC to be used for re-tarring roads in the state, according to Sreejith.

The HKM, under the state government, is leading the collection of materials from panchayats with the help of voluntary organisations.

Volunteers visit every house, segregate and collect waste, and accumulate it in a place in the village. The  CKC transports it for processing.

Dileep Kumar, the officer designated to coordinate the waste collection in Pathanamthitta, said the CKC has collected around 650 tonne waste from the district.

“It looks set to reach about 2,000 tonnes on completion. In a majority of the areas in the district, two-storied buildings were submerged and the silt accumulated inside all the equipment in houses. The district administration agreed to avail the help of Fire and Rescue Service to clean plastic materials coated with silt. Beds and other materials can be utilised in the furnace of cement manufacturers,” Dileep said.

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