Understaffed BMC Fails to Check Plastic Use
BHUBANESWAR: The Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) is handicapped by lack of enforcing officials to enforce ban on use of non-biodegradable plastic in the Capital.
The civic body had issued a ban order on non-biodegradable plastic about two years back. Despite repeated instructions, specifically to the traders, the Corporation has failed to prevent its use. Any polythene material under 40 micron thickness has been banned by BMC in the city.
Soon after the ban was imposed, the environment wing of the BMC made regular raids on market places of the city. Gradually, the frequency of the raids came down and so did the compliance of the traders.
BMC Environment Officer BK Routray said whenever their team went to raid any market place, the traders retorted back demanding provisioning of alternatives.
One company, which had come forward to supply bio-degradable polythene above 40 micron thickness, could not sustain in the market due to high cost of their products.The company representatives were asked to set up a permanent stall in Unit-I market to sell their product and create awareness, but no progress was made on that front.
To tackle these problems, BMC has modified the new sanitation contract which will come into force from June 1. Under the new contract, the collection, segregation, transportation and disposal of plastic waste will be done by the sanitation contractor.
This will be helpful to the Corporation which is already reeling under acute shortage of manpower. According to the Plastic Waste (Management and Handling) Rules, 2011, the municipalities are supposed to send detailed information about the methodology and the amount of plastic waste collected by them to the Odisha State Pollution Control Board (OSPCB).
The Board then compiles a statewide report and forwards it to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) by September 30 every year.
Routray said, last year they could not send the inputs as they were unable to implement the ban due to lack of adequate staff.
The segregation and collection of plastic waste was not done efficiently. OSPCB has instructed the Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) to submit a consolidated data on time or face penalty in the form of fine or imprisonment.