Vaniyambadi: RO plants, evaporators installed at effluent plants

It will help in preventing groundwater and land pollution

VANIYAMBADI: Reverse osmosis (RO) plants and mechanical evaporators have been installed at four common effluent treatment plants situated at Vaniyambadi and Ambur and are ready to be commissioned. Work on installing the facility at Pernambut plant is in the process.

Officials of the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB) said the RO plants and mechanical evaporators will help in preventing groundwater and land pollution.

There are a total of 252 tanneries and five common effluent treatment plants in Vaniyambadi, Ambur and Pernambut areas.

“The five plants have 209 member units, while there are 20 individual effluent treatment plants. Trial run of the RO plants and mechanical evaporators at the four common effluent treatment plants is going on and are in the commissioning stage,” an official of TNPCB said.

The move comes in the wake of tanneries exceeding the pollution control norms in the discharge of total dissolved solids, sulphates and chlorides through the common effluent treatment plants, he said.

“Now, the tanneries are not meeting the standards in discharging total dissolved solids, sulphates and chlorides. They are exceeding the limits prescribed, thereby causing groundwater and land pollution. This is why they have been asked to install the RO plants and mechanical evaporators. Once the facility is commissioned at each of the plants, the waste water need not be discharged out but can be recycled and used for processing activities,” he explained.

TNPCB has been regularly monitoring the common effluent treatment plants and collecting and analysing samples discharged from the plants.

He said that it was through analysing samples that TNPCB found that total dissolved solids, sulphates and chlorides were being exceedingly discharged.

With the common effluent treatment plants functioning, the RO plants and mechanical evaporators will signify the adoption of advanced treatment system, the official pointed out.


New process to treat organic waste in effluents

Anna varsity to soon join hands with firms for commercialising the project

In a bid to reduce water pollution caused by industrial effluents, the Centre for Environmental Studies, Anna University, has developed a special consortium of microbes that could be used to treat organic waste even in effluent with high salinity level.

The Centre’s director A. Navaneetha Gopalakrishnan said the Centre, which had recently patented the process, would soon join hands with firms to commercialise the project.

At present, several industries release raw effluent into waterways, including the Cooum river, as the microbes now used in the treatment process cannot digest organic waste owing to high total dissolved solids (TDS) level.

The new process was tested in waste water, which has TDS level ranging between 50,000 and 65,000 mg per litre. The microbes used in aeration process helped in treating the organic waste, he said. N. Vasudevan, professor at the Centre for Environmental Studies, said the process would be more efficient than that used in sewage treatment plants for organic waste removal. It is economical than the energy intensive treatment process used in industries.

Moreover, the salt content in the waste water could be recovered through evaporation for use as raw material in alkaline industries. Chlorine gas, which is used as disinfectant in water treatment, could also be generated, he said.

K. Lakshmi – From The Hindu

Ramanathapuram: Importance of protecting wetlands stressed

RAMANATHAPURAM: The students of various schools in Rameswaram on Tuesday took out a rally to create awareness of the need to protect wetlands.

Conscious: Students signing a banner to stress the need for wetland protection in Rameswaram on Tuesday. — Photo: L. Balachandar

They also signed on a banner stressing the importance of preserving the wetlands, which were facing dangers by way of encroachment, pollution, letting effluents, plastics, lack of maintenance.

Other areas

The representatives of People’s Action for Development, which is spearheading the awareness campaign, said though the government had identified four wetlands Gulf of Mannar, Mela Selvanoor-Keela Selvanoor, Kanjirankudi and Chithirankudi, the wetlands were spread in other areas of the district including Naripaiyur, Muhuntharayar Chathiram.

In danger

Many of these wetlands were facing danger due to various factors.

S. Kamalabhai, Deputy Superintendent of Police, Rameswaram, V. Jeyachandran, Head Master, Government Higher Secondary School, N. Jeyakanthan, NSS officer, J. Prabakarn and P. Chockalingam of People’s Action for Development took part.


Evolve strategy to end effluent discharge problem in Tirupur

Tirupur: The Central and State Governments should evolve a long-term strategy to permanently end the industrial effluent discharge problem in the Tirupur knitwear cluster, according to AITUC State president and former MP K. Subbarayan.

He told reporters here that first, both the governments should take steps to end the dyeing units’ strike by extending financial assistance to them to offset the capital expenditure of Rs. 803.42 crore incurred on setting up 20 Common Effluent Treatment Plants embedded with zero liquid discharge systems.

“While the State Government should extend a grant to the tune of 15 per cent of the capital cost, the Central Government should bear 60 per cent in order to reduce the financial burden on the small and medium scale dyeing units,” he said.

He pointed out that continuous suspension of works by dyeing units would severely affect the apparel production, since dyeing was an integral process in the manufacturing chain. Hence, any drastic reduction in apparel production would have a cascading effect on the jobs of lakhs of migrant workers in the cluster.

“Mass retrenchment will, thus, spell a serious social impact in the State,” he said.

Mr. Subbarayan said that a durable solution to the effluent discharge problem should take into consideration the wellbeing of all stakeholders situated alongside River Noyyal including the farmers.

“As an everlasting solution, the Centre should come forward with a project to discharge the effluents generated from here into the sea after completing the primary treatment in the cluster itself,” he said.

This, according to him, will avoid polluting the marine ecology.


Frequent waterlogging hits Cuddalore locality

Effluents from industrial estate also cause health hazards

CUDDALORE: Residents of V.K.J. Nagar in Panchankuppam area near here detest rain because even the slightest shower leaves their place waterlogged. About 100 houses are thus facing the threat of inundation from overflowing sewage and run-off from the nearby garbage yard.

S. Raju (45), a resident, told The-Hindu that waterlogging had been the bane of the area for the past two decades. Sewage carrying effluents of the SIPCOT Industrial Estate is also streaming through the village, thereby causing stench and serious health hazards.

Owing to the lack of drainage facility, the murky water stagnated at the place for months together. Therefore, the area had become a breeding ground for mosquitoes and the residents find it extremely difficult to cope with the menace.

Woes aplenty: Panchankuppam in Cuddalore old town area remains constantly waterlogged. — Photo: C. Venkatachalapathy

The residents would have to invariably wade through the muddy waters and many of them had developed skin disorders. Whenever it rained heavily, water seeped into houses and posed a severe challenge to clear the contaminated water.

Drinking water supply too was affected by such a situation because there was a potential threat to contract water-borne diseases. Mr. Raju said that whenever the residents register their protests, the local body took ad hoc measures such as digging a shallow trench.

Since the trench was not attached to any canal or water source, in course of time it also got clogged and aggravated the problem.

The residents had also made several representations to the district administration but no action has been taken.

A.V. Ragunathan – From THE HINDU