The municipal bodies in India can charge a fee for garbage collection from residents but will have to ensure its disposal in an environmental friendly manner, says a new draft rules circulated by the environment ministry.
The new rule, which aims to fight the growing menace of urban municipal waste, is likely to make the job of municipal bodies difficult. As per the Central Pollution Control Board report, around 1,27,486 tonne of municipal garbage is generated every day in 59 major cities of India and only 12.54% of its gets treated. The remaining either remains unlifted or is dumped in unscientifically manned landfill sites.
The Municipal Waste (Handling and Management Rules) 2013 for the first time specify norms for the landfill debarring municipal bodies from setting them up near residential colonies, wildlife and forest areas, religious, historical and spiritual places.
Each landfill site should have a waste processing facility or should be linked to one. There should be continuous monitoring of the groundwater and air quality at the sites, the rules say.
The draft norm also prescribes segregation of biodegradable and non-biodegradable components of the solid waste. It also says that the local bodies would collect horticulture, construction and dairy wastes separately and will not mix it with the solid waste.
The municipal bodies will have to set up special facilities for segregation of the waste, which is presently not done.
In addition, the bodies would be required to provide three waste bins — green for bio-degradable, white for recyclable and black for all other — in residential colonies to ensure that people dispose of their household waste in an environmental-friendly manner.
In return, the municipal body will have a right to charge a “service fee” from residents for transportation and disposal of the segregated waste.
To make the rules effective, the environment ministry wants the municipal bodies to incorporate the rules in its bye-laws.