No trial incineration of Bhopal’s toxic waste in Nagpur

Madhya Pradesh High Court takes cognisance of the Maharashtra Pollution Control Boards objection

By Aparna Pallavi
Published: Wednesday 21 December 2011

In a temporary relief to Nagpur residents, the Jabalpur bench of the Madhya Pradesh High Court has turned down the Centre’s plea for a trial run of burning toxic waste from the defunct Union Carbide factory at the Defence Research and Development Organisation’s (DRDO) incineration facility in the city. The waste has been lying in the plant premises in Bhopal for the past 27 years. Maharashtra has been resisting Madhya Pradesh’s attempt to dispose of the waste in Nagpur.
The Union of India and Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) had sought authorisation to DRDO facility at Borkhedi in Nagpur for storing 2.5 million tonnes of the hazardous waste, a legacy of the 1984 Bhopal gas disaster, for the trial run of the incinerator.

Taking cognisance to the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB)’s objections, citing non-compliance of inter-state hazardous waste transport rules and non-functional incinerator, the court has directed the Centre to instead carry out the incineration test at any of the country’s select laboratories, It asked it to analyse fumes, residue and its possible environmental impact and submit a report within three weeks.

The court has also clarified that the Union of India can file replies on the MPCB’s objections on behalf of the DRDO and the Union environment ministry. The next hearing of the case has been slated for January 17.

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