The civic body’s project to dispose waste and close the 40-year-old Mulund dumping ground seems to have run into trouble even before it can take off. Even after extending the deadline for a response to the tenders, the civic body did not receive a single bidder for this project.
With no firms willing to take up the project, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has extended the deadline a second time, to the end of this month.
“If we do not get any bidder even after this extension, we will be forced to relook at the conditions of the tender. At present, we will wait till September 30 before taking any decision,” said Vijay Balamwar, deputy municipal commissioner, solid waste management department.
After a delay of two months, the final tenders for the project were issued in May. Except for four companies that downloaded the tender forms, the interest in the project has been slim.
The illegal dumping of debris at the Mulund landfill, is also a reason behind no response for the project, sources said. Derivable from biodegradable waste, for example, compost has higher resale value as compared to inert waste (debris).
Calorific value (CV) is the energy contained in a fuel or food, determined by measuring the heat produced by the complete combustion of a specified quantity of it. The debris leads to a reduction in the final product and thus a loss to the contractor. The companies will be sole owner of the final product obtained from processing the waste. The BMC can buy the final product, which can be anything from electricity to compost from the companies.
According to a contour survey carried out last year, the total volume of the existing solid waste management at the Mulund landfill is 5.35 million cubic metres.
After the discussions with companies and tender committee, it was decided that 30 lakh metric tonnes of waste will be processed over three years, compared to 60 lakh metric tonnes, as the civic body feared that contractors will not be able to process that huge amount of waste and will not bid.
The closure plan came up after repeated fires at Deonar and Mulund dumping grounds earlier this year that highlighted the civic body’s faulty waste management procedure.
A panel of six members -- three civic officials, a financial advisor and one representative each from IIT-B and NEERI -- framed the standards for the scientific closure. Based on the committee’s recommendations, changes were made to the conditions for tenders, delaying the process by a month.
The processing plant will be built on 4 hectares within one year, while the processing of waste is distributed over the next three years. In the second year, 35% of waste i.e. 10,50,000 metric tonnes will be processed at the ground, while the remaining 12 lakh metric tonnes will be taken up in the third waste.