Smoke from incinerator causes breathing issues among residents
A senior official from TNPCB told DT Next that inspection will be conducted to ascertain the situation.
CHENNAI: Kodungaiyur and pollution go hand in hand, but what’s new is that the smoke emanating from the incinerator technology introduced to treat solid waste is adding to the woes of the residents of the locality.
Krishnamoorthy Nagar, Ezhil Nagar and Nethaji Nagar are some of the worst affected residential areas near the Kodungaiyur dumpyard. And the quality of life of around 2 lakh people continue to be in a bad shape.
Residents complain they’ve been suffering from various pollution-related illnesses for the last 20 years.
“The incinerator is the new villain in our locality, adding to the existing health issues. For decades, we’ve been suffering air and water pollution. Groundwater is completely contaminated, and the air is a mix of smoke and dust. Recently, the State government granted permission to carry-out bio-mining project, which has now become another headache for us,” lamented Velu, a resident near the dumpyard.
The incinerator runs round the clock, burning tons of wastes carried from other parts of the city. “Smoke from the incinerator poses a huge health threat for us, especially children and seniors,” he added.
Most residents suffer from respiratory ailments and lung-related infections. “The frequent inhaling of toxic gasses from the dumpyard is an issue for children and senior citizens,” rued R Prasath of Krishnamoorthy Nagar. “Most senior citizens suffer from asthma and respiratory issues. We’re constantly exposed to carcinogens.”
Activists opined that bio-mining or incineration was not the right solution for managing waste. “Decentralised waste management is affordable and easy. Gated communitiesmust handle their waste by setting up composting yards. Local bodies can facilitate this for those who cannot afford it. Accumulation of a city’s waste in one place, and burning it all is the biggest issue,” pointed out Geo Damin of Poovulagin Nanbargal. “Why should people in Perungudi or Kodungaiyur suffer due to the waste generated from Mylapore, West Mambalam and Poes Garden?”
A senior official from TNPCB told DT Next that inspection will be conducted to ascertain the situation. “Our officials will take adequate actions if there is an increase in pollution levels,” the official said.
Meanwhile, residents urged the city Corporation and Fire Safety Department to ensure that there was no fire in the dumpyard during this summer. It may be recalled that there were several fire accidents in the dumpyard during peak summer last year.