Chennai Buzz: Priority tag for Pallikaranai marsh | Dust warning for Metro Phase 2 | Committee to monitor biomedical waste disposal and more

A quick round up of the key civic developments in the city over the week that went by!

Pallikaranai marsh among 4 other wetlands in the state to get priority tag

The Central government, under its initiative of wetlands rehabilitation has given 4 wetlands including the Pallikaranai marsh  its priority tag. Accordingly, these wetlands cannot be developed without any further approvals and all encroachments, dumping of debris, waste and sewage should be stopped with immediate effect.

The state government has also been asked to prepare an outline management plan for these wetlands, for the next 5 years, to be submitted within 3 months. Once the plan is approved, the state government can seek funds to manage these wetlands.

Source: Times of India

Special committee formed to monitor bio-medical waste

A 16 member committee headed by the Chennai Collector has been formed to draft the district environmental plan for effective implementation of bio-medical waste management. The committee included officers from different line departments like revenue, Chennai corporation, PWD, fisheries, rural health services, and animal husbandry.

The committee will furnish a monthly progress report to the Chief Secretary on the effective implementation of the Bio-Medical Waste Management Rules, 2016. These reports will be uploaded on the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB) website. This comes following an order from Principle Bench of National Green Tribunal (NGT) passed on July 15, which gave a two month deadline for all the States to form  district-level committees and make an inventory of health care facilities and bio-medical waste generation, besides setting-up common treatment and disposal facility.

Source: The New Indian Express

Cleaner waterways may soon become a reality

Much has been spoken about restoration of the Cooum back to its times when there was life and action on this waterway.

Chennai Metrowater is all set to call for tenders to begin work on comprehensive clean-up of the Cooum and Adyar rivers and Buckingham Canal and its associated drains. The work is slated to begin in January 2020 and is expected to be completed in 4 years.

Recently, the government had issued an order sanctioning various projects worth ₹2,371 crore proposed by Chennai Metrowater to plug sewage outfalls into the city’s waterways and also strengthen the sewer network, through short-term and long-term strategies.

Source: The Hindu

A multi-deck elevated transport corridor on the anvil at OMR

The government is planning a Rs 3,088 crore multi-deck elevated transport corridor under two phases to decongest the IT Expressway. The Metro project that is being planned as part of Phase 2 at OMR will become an elevated stretch ahead of SRP Tools junction.   Similarly, there are also plans to bring an elevated corridor under two phases from Taramani to Siruseri in Phase-I and Siruseri to Mahabalipuram in Phase-II along OMR.

The proposal to have elevated road was worked out as traffic volume in OMR is 10,178 car units per hour which is twice the capacity of the road.

Meanwhile, the operations of six metro stations — Annanagar Tower, Annanagar East, Shenoy Nagar, Pachaiyappa’s College, Kilpauk, and Nehru Park — have been handed over to contract workers. This has created a furore among the permanent employees who were hitherto managing these stations.

Source: The New Indian Express

Corporation lays down rules for erecting banners

The Chennai Corporation has laid down rules and regulations for erecting banners in the city. Accordingly, two days before erecting the hoarding,  a picture of the hoarding has to be submitted and a no-objection certificate should be received from the concerned police station. Also, a fee of Rs 200 along with a deposit of Rs 50 should be paid to the Corporation in the form of demand draft in the name of the Corporation Commissioner.

If the rules are violated, the violators will be booked under section 326 (I) of the Chennai Corporation Municipal Act 1919. Also, they will have to pay a fine of Rs 5,000 for every banner erected or face imprisonment for one year.

Digital banners cannot be erected in a 100-meter distance of schools, religious buildings, hospitals, sculptures, statues, tourist spots, and road junctions.

Source: The New Indian Express

Chennai Metro Phase 2 to generate 32 tonnes of dust

The second phase of the metro rail network in Chennai that is slated to be completed in 2026 could bring with it large scale dust pollution. The 118km long network that will comprise phase 2 is set to generate 32 tonnes of dust during the construction phase as stated in the detailed project report prepared by the Chennai Metro Rail Limited (CMRL). 

The dust is expected to be generated from construction materials and excavated soil in case of underground lines. In addition to this, other pollutants expected to rise include 132 tonnes of CO, six tonnes of PM2.5 and hydrocarbons, 274 tonnes of NO and more than 17,000 tonnes of CO2. Since phase 2 is longer than phase 2, the volume of excavated soil is expected to double. CMRL estimates phase 2 to see the removal of 10.69 million cubic metres of soil. Experts are of the view that the pollution will only affect area where work is ongoing and will reduce once the work is completed. Since the construction takes years, the pollution levels will not see a drastic spike as a result. 

Source: Times of India

[Compiled by Sandhya Raju]

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