Kochi looking for a new waste treatment plant

The civic authorities of Kochi are pinning their hopes on a temporary waste treatment plant at Brahmapuram as the existing plant has become near defunct.

The existing plant, which was commissioned over a decade ago, had faced a series of issues ever since its inauguration. The sinking of the floor of the plant, which was constructed by spending around ₹12 crore, a few months after its inauguration and the resultant damage to the machinery had hit the waste management in the city.

The city needs to look for a temporary mechanism for processing the waste that is collected from the city streets and the neighbouring local bodies with the existing plant becoming defunct, says T.K. Ashraf, chairman of the Health Standing Committee of the Kochi Corporation.

To make matters worse, the contractor who is carrying out the processing of waste has informed the civic authorities his reluctance to continue the work.

Besides the fresh waste collected every day, the civic authority also has to manage the legacy waste that has accumulated on the campus. The civic body is awaiting a Detailed Project Report from an expert agency for setting up a plant, which would process the waste through composting method. The Corporation is also looking for new technologies that would reduce the time required for processing the waste, he said.

Though the government has plans to set up a waste-to-energy plant on the campus, it may take considerable time for the new plant to materialise. It might take at least four years for the new waste to energy plant to become operational and Corporation cannot remain idle till the new one becomes functional, he said.

Incidentally, members of the Health Standing Committee of the Kochi Corporation had inspected the Brahmapuram site on Saturday to take stock of the situation. A report on the visit would be submitted to the Mayor shortly, said Mr Ashraf.

The local body hopes to set up the new facility at a 10 acre area stretch located at a higher altitude. The ₹9 crore earmarked in the plan fund could be used for the purpose, said the civic administrators.

The Corporation would convene a special session shortly to discuss the issue and chart out the action plan, civic authorities said.

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