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Garbage filling lungs: Blame game on

india Updated: May 03, 2011 11:26 IST
Hindustan Times
Garbage burning

Burning of garbage, prohibited under the environment laws, is very much prevalent in this city of millennium. See anywhere and the burning garbage can be sighted, be it in the NA dumpers or the illegal dumps that have come up everywhere in the city, like the sector 15 bus stop, the sector 17 garbage dump, the area outside Sector 39 government rest house etc.

The Noida Authority absolves itself of the responsibility saying that it is not their employees who burn the garbage. A senior official in the Noida Authority says, "We don't allow burning of garbage. It is the slum dwellers who burn it to get some useful products like copper from copper wires etc". But question him as to whose responsibility is it to see that garbage is not burnt and you draw a blank.

Environmental experts warn against burning of garbage, which, they say, releases toxic gases into the atmosphere. "It is very important that all the garbage is disposed off in a scientific manner. Garbage is the largest source of dioxin emissions. Common household trash such as synthetics, plastics, metals release potent chemicals when burned," says Dr Raghu Rao.

"Even paper products, cardboard, newsprint, and magazines contain chemical dyes, coatings, pigments and chlorine. And when these are burnt they release particulate matter, carbon monoxide, acids and toxins such as vinyl chloride, heavy metals, dioxins and furans etc into the atmosphere," he says.

"Inhaling these may cause immediate irritation or asthmatic attack. Long-term exposure to these products cause respiratory problems, cancers, birth defects, developmental abnormalities etc," he adds.

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