The Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) will soon be relieved of the ever growing problem of e-waste. The state government will start the first of its kind plant for scientific recycling of e-waste generated in the region.
“E-waste has become a serious cause of concern for the society and the problem needs to be addressed effectively,” said environment secretary Valsa Nair.The environment department of the state government, along with the MMRDA, will soon start a formal e-waste recycling facility in the region through a public-private partnership. “The pre-feasibility study conducted by IRG Systems has given highly encouraging results. The report submitted two weeks ago shows that such facility, if created in the MMR, would be highly feasible,” Nair said.
According to research conducted by Greenpeace, Mumbai tops the country with around 50,000 tonne of e-waste every year. The figure is projected to increase to 3 lakh tonne per annum by 2011. “Apart from that, the manner in which e-waste is presently being recycled is highly harmful for the environment and human health as well,” Nair said.
Currently, the total e-waste generation in Mumbai and Pune is around 5 lakh metric tonne per annum. According to Nair, currently e-waste recycling is carried out in two steps - dismantling and segregating. “Recovery of valuable metals and resource recovery are not taking place. The reason for this is that resource recovery facility is available only in Belgium. Hence it is necessary to set up a proper recycling plant.”
Tenders for setting up the facility will be invited by MMRDA by the end of July and the plant is expected to be completely functional by next year.
“The project will be implemented in phases. In the first phase, the capacity of the plant would be around 7,500 tonne per annum, which would later be increased. We have plans to start resource recovery facility at the plant in the future,” Nair added.
Once the plant is functional, the contractor will establish e-waste collection channel in the region.