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PCMC asks for buffer relaxation even before commissioning landfill site

It was revealed that the PCMC had asked the NEERI to submit a document about buffer zone at the Punawale site.

Written by Partha Sarathi Biswas | Pune |
June 26, 2015 1:17:44 am
pcmc, pimpri chinchwad, pimpri, chinchwad, punawale landfill site, pmc, pune municipal corporation, pune news, india news NEERI has refused to give any specific suggestion regarding the Punawale site as land has not yet been acquired.

Strange as it might sound, the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) plans to take steps to reduce the buffer zone of the Punawale landfill site even before it is commissioned.

In response to an RTI query filed by The Indian Express, it was revealed that the PCMC had asked the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI) to submit a document about buffer zone at the Punawale site, although the land acquisition for the same is yet to completed.

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As per the guidelines set by the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB), every landfill site has to have a buffer zone of 500 meters around it where no construction or other activity should be permitted. With increased urbanisation, this guideline has been challenged with the state government reducing the buffer zone of Moshi garbage site to 100 meters, earlier this year. The state government had relied on a report submitted by NEERI to reduce the buffer zone.

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Documents showed that the PCMC had written to NEERI last September, asking it to submit a document regarding the buffer zone of Punawale. NEERI’s team visited the site and subsequently wrote to the PCMC, expressing their inability to submit a report as the site was not functional and land acquisition for the same was to be completed.

“The studies related to buffer zone requirements would depend on factors such as municipal solid waste (MSW) load received, types of waste and capacities of MSW processing facilities, and hence studies related to buffer zone requirement for Punawale site would be irrelevant,” read the letter sent by NEERI to PCMC.

NEERI has refused to give any specific suggestion regarding the Punawale site as land has not yet been acquired. NEERI had suggested various measures to be taken at the Moshi site, which can result in reduction of the buffer zone.

Sanjay Kulkarni, the head of the environmental cell of PCMC, said land acquisition for the site in Punawale was yet to be completed. “The general body has passed a resolution, asking the administration to take steps to reduce the bufferzone,” he said. Environmentalist Vishwambhar Choudhari said it was wrong on the part of the PCMC to ask for a reduction of the buffer zone even before the landfill site was commissioned.

PMC to pull up civic engineers if they fail to fix potholes by June 28

Under fire for potholes emerging after the three days of rainfall in the city, the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has decided to act tough against civic engineers who fail to ensure that roads in their jurisdiction are repaired by June 28. “The elected representatives had complained of roads turning bad during rainfall.

Accordingly, the mayor and municipal commissioner issued orders to repair all city roads. The civic staff have to survey roads in their respective areas and carry out repair work,” said additional city engineer Vivek Kharwadkar. He added that it had been found that roads at construction site of bridges, including Swargate, Hadapsar and engineering college, were damaged after the rainfall. The elected representatives on Monday took on the civic administration for giving false assurance of completing the road repair work by the start of monsoon.

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