30,000 sanitation workers out on Chennai roads cleaning
Chennai: Water receding from most areas in Chennai and its suburbs, sanitation and conservancy workers face the mammoth task of removing 1 lakh tonnes of stinking garbage littering the streets as bright sunshine further eased the situation.
Over 30,000 sanitation workers have been pressed into service to quickly clear the rubbish, including polythene bags, mattresses, rotting foodgrains and other household articles strewn across the city in the aftermath of the unprecedented deluge, to prevent outbreak of epidemics though no such instances have come to light so far.
According to Corporation of Chennai, 10,000 tonnes of garbage has been removed so far during the last two days. stagnant sewage water due to choked drains in some areas like T Nagar was posing a major health hazard, becoming breeding grounds for mosquitoes and other pests.
Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has announced the government will distribute 2,000 tonnes of bleaching power and 1 crore chlorine tablets to people in the rain-hit areas of the State, including Chennai, for disinfecting the affected places and purifying drinking water. Each beneficiary household will be given half-a-kg of bleaching powder to be sprinkled around and 20 chlorine tablets to purify water, she said.
She said 1,105 medical camps being run by the State government will continue to serve the flood-hit. The market for generating value of municipal solid waste (MSW) is expected to be worth about Rs 10,000 crore in the next 12-14 months, a study has found.
"Assuming the base capital expenditure of USD 8,750/tonnes per day (TPD) for composting plants and average capital expenditure of USD 1.4 million/TPD for setting up waste to energy plants, market for generating value of waste is expected to be worth USD 1.5 billion by 2017," the study by Assocham-cKinetics has said.
Quoting the data of the erstwhile Planning Commission, the study said urban population in the country is expected to increase to 404 million in 2017 (from the level of 365 million in 2012). "It is imperative to move towards constructive waste management which involves public-private partnerships focused on eventual waste minimisation, driven at the community level, using low-energy and low-technology resources,' Assocham president Sunil Kanoria said.
About 22,500 sanitation workers of the corporation, besides 8,000-odd sourced from elsewhere are working overtime to dispose of the waste on 600 vehicles at their disposal, officials said.