Not even a component implemented since February 2020
Rapid urbanization poses a new challenge across UT
JAMMU, 24th June: Although construction and demolition waste has become a serious environmental problem due to rapid urbanization in the union territory of Jammu and Kashmir, no element of the effective waste management policy these have only been implemented in the past two years. and a half years.
This is primarily because those who run the affairs of the Department of Housing and Urban Development have never bothered to hold deliberations with all stakeholders and have preferred to dump into official records the serious issue that impacts negative impact on the environment and the health of people across the Union. Territory.
See Government Order No. 70-JK (HUD) of February 20, 2020, Department of Housing and Urban Development notified a Policy and Strategy on Construction and Demolition Waste Management in Jammu and Kashmir.
It was admitted in the document that the increase in the number of buildings, the expansion of urban infrastructure such as roads, bridges and viaducts and the demolition of old buildings have resulted in the generation of an immense amount of waste. in the form of debris, building materials, etc. leaves a negative impact on the environment and people’s health.
Environmental issues include shrinking landfill space due to increasing amounts of this waste being disposed of; exhausted building materials; increased contamination from landfills leading to serious negative health effects and environmental damage.
“However, not even a single element of the policy has been translated into reality by the Department of Housing and Urban Development and it seems that the strategy was crafted just to mislead the Government of India on the implementation Construction and Demolition Waste Management Rules, 2016,” official sources told EXCELSIOR.
It was mentioned that the policy will ensure that no construction and demolition waste is dumped in open spaces by 2022; segregation of waste at source; establishment of a recycling facility within six months of notification of the policy; purchase of recycling by-products in municipal and government contracts.
“There is absolutely no progress on any of these policy goals, even after an interval of nearly two and a half years,” sources said, adding that “no serious attention has so far given to Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Reuse, Recover and Recycle even though a lot of hype has been given to the 5R principle”.
Revealing that deadlines for different activities have not been met so far, sources said that under the policy, urban local bodies were required to identify sites for collection and treatment facilities. within 18 months of the notification of the policy, but this basic exercise was not carried out by the Urban Local Authorities because the officials of the Directorate of Housing and Urbanism never bothered to issue instructions while exercising administrative control over these grassroots democratic institutions in urban areas.
“In the absence of even a basic exercise, even the reuse of construction and demolition materials in rural areas could not be promoted by the Department of Public Works, although an opinion in this regard has was issued by the Indian government several years ago,” the sources added. adding “due to the non-enforcement of the policy, the majority of construction and demolition waste is transported by private agencies without any supervision and dumped in open spaces and illegal sites”.
According to the sources, not even one urban local body has established a mechanism to register, regulate and monitor these agencies, adding “in order to ensure compliance with the policy, the urban local bodies were supposed to develop regulations for the building management. and demolition waste, but this approach has not been initiated for almost two and a half years”.
It is pertinent to mention here that construction and demolition waste such as concrete and bricks can be crushed and used as coarse or fine aggregates while soil, sand and gravel can also be reprocessed for productive use as fine aggregates. These finished products can be used for non-structural purposes such as paving and road construction and coarse and fine aggregates can be used as partial replacements for natural sand.