Millennium Post

PCB set to start pollution audit of industries

Kolkata: The West Bengal Pollution Control Board (WBPCB) is all set to start pollution audit of the industries across the state. The WBPCB is entering into a partnership with a German company for the necessary technological assistance in this regard.

WBPCB will first make a comprehensive repository of such industries and come out with an action plan on how to curb pollution. The industries will be getting real time alert on the pollution level. Top officials of WBPCB will hold a meeting with the German company at Delhi on Friday.

"Industrial waste is a major cause of pollution. We have identified 48 grossly polluting industries and more than 400 seriously polluting industries in the state, most of which are contributing largely to river pollution. Out of 350 polluted rivers in the country, 17 river stretches are in Bengal," said WBPCB chairman Kalyan Rudra, on the side-

lines of the Environment Partnership Summit organised by ICC.

The highly polluted rivers in the state include Ganga, Damodar, Vidyadhari and Churni to name a few. The coliform bacteria level in Churni hovers around two to three lakh per 100 ml, where the standard should be less than 500.

The Biochemical Oxygen Level (BOD) is alarmingly low in these rivers as well. BOD is a key indicator of organic pollution which affects dissolved oxygen (DO) level that impacts aquatic life.

Churni is a distributary of the Mathabhanga river, itself a distributary of the Padma River at Munshiganj in the Kushtia district of Bangladesh. The Mathabanga divides into two rivers, the Ichamati and the Churni, near Majhdia in Nadia district.

State Environment minister Saumen Mahapatra said during his address at the Environment Partnership Summit that the WBPCB is now monitoring river water quality at 137 locations in the state.

It may be mentioned that the National Green Tribunal on December 18 had slammed the authorities for failing to stop discharge of untreated sewage into Ganga and directed completion of all projects relating to sewage treatment by June 30 next year.

The NGT had said that there is no information on water quality of river Ganga in the stretch falling in UP, Jharkhand, Bihar and West Bengal, or regulation of flood plain zone.

The green panel, headed by NGT chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel, directed the National Mission for Clean Ganga, Uttarakhand, UP, Jharkhand, Bihar and West Bengal, to prevent discharge of industrial effluents in Ganga and its tributaries.

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