The state environment department has made it mandatory for all industries in Maharashtra to give an online declaration of its activity, products, effluents generated and disposal procedures they adopt.
By doing this, the state government wants to create an area-wise online database of industries and the pollutants they release, which will make it easy for area planning and establish methods to beat pollution.
“We are trying to take measures that will help us plan on pollution management in industrial areas,” said Environment Minister Suresh Shetty.
Till date, only 2.5 per cent of the total industries in the state have given such a declaration.
There is lack of information on which areas are polluted especially since it is not mandatory for all industries to give any such declaration of the effluents and what treatment methods are used to take care of byproducts that harm the environment.
This move will also help the state government deal with the problems it is facing in getting Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) environment clearances in its heavily polluted clusters.
On January 15, Hindustan Times had reported how the MoEF has put restrictions on environmental clearances for all development projects in eight areas in Maharashtra with critical and severe comprehensive environment pollution index.
Of the eight areas, Navi Mumbai and Chandrapur were considered as critically polluted, while Chembur, Tarapur, Dombivli, Pimpri-Chinchwad, Nashik and Aurangabad were considered as severely polluted.
The state pollution control board was asked to submit a plan with specific timelines on how it plans to tackle the problem, based on which the MoEF would rethink on its diktat.
“But we did not have details of the industries and the type of pollution in these areas. This [online declaration] will help us establish the exact problems for future planning,” a state pollution control board official said.