8.65% of total hazardous waste in Haryana disposed through co-processing: F.Y. 2016-17
Co-processing reduces costing due to incineration
Sanjaya K. Mishra, Editor & Publisher, Enviro Annotations
A July 2017 publication by Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Govt. of India deliberates that about 7.4 million tonnes of hazardous wastes are annually generated in India, out of which around 54% is recyclable and can be used for resource or energy recovery. About 200 million tonnes of non-hazardous wastes of industrial origin also gets generated in the country such as fly-ash, pyro-metallurgical slags, sludge from WTPs, dried sewage sludge, Plastic & other packaging materials, date expired and off-specification FMCGs materials and food & kindred products, used pneumatic tyres, etc. having potential for resource or energy recovery.
According to an Interim Report of Monitoring Committee on Management of Hazardous Waste published in January, 2019 by the CPCB, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Govt. of India, during the Financial Year 2016-17, about 7.17 Million Metric Tonne of hazardous waste have been reported to be generated in the country from 56,350 numbers of hazardous waste generating industries. 2.84 Million MT (38.30%) of Hazardous Waste was disposed, while 3.68 Million MT (49.46%) of hazardous waste was recycled or utilized.
3.2% of Hazardous Waste was disposed through common Incinerator, while nearly 0.7% was disposed through Captive Incinerator. In the case of incineration, the residual ash requires to be landfilled as hazardous waste. Further, it produces gaseous hazards in the form of obnoxious gases.
On the contrary, the production of cement in India has been reported to be about 502 Million Tons per annum. Extrapolating this figure to estimate the requirement of coal and raw materials such as Limestone, Iron ore, Clay, Bauxite, etc., as per a CPCB report, could be nearly 84 Million Tons per annum and 750 Million Tons per annum, respectively. Therefore, India has vast potential to utilize large quantum of wastes such as non-recyclable hazardous & other wastes, segregated combustible fractions from MSW or Municipal Solid Wastes (MSW) based Refuse Derived Fuel (RDF), non-hazardous industrial wastes, plastics wastes, tyre wastes, non-usable bio-mass etc. as an alternative fuel and raw material (AFR) in cement kilns.
Co-processing in cement kiln is considered an environmentally sustainable option for the management of different kinds of wastes including hazardous and other wastes. In co-processing, these wastes are not only destroyed at a higher temperature of up to 1450 °C and long residence time during which its inorganic content gets fixed with the clinker and becomes part of cement apart from using the energy content of the wastes, thus no residues are left. Unlike incineration process, co-processing does not produce residual ash. Further, the acidic gases, if any generated during co-processing gets neutralized in the large alkaline environment available within the kiln system. This phenomenon also reduces the non-renewable resources requirement such as coal and limestone etc. Thus the utilization of wastes in cement kilns through co-processing provides a win-win option of waste disposal.
Further, the January 2019 Interim report depicts that as per 2016-17 data, Haryana has granted authorization to 3941 hazardous waste generating industries to generate 64896.63 Ton per year of hazardous wastes. However, according to Annual Returns filed as per the provisions made under the Hazardous and Other Wastes (Management and Transboundary Movement) Rules, 2016, the total quantum of hazardous waste generated in Haryana during 2016-17 was 58829.43 Ton, which is nearly 9.4% less than the quantity for which authorizations granted. However, this data does not clear whether all the industries have submitted the annual returns (Form-4). 8995.81 Ton of hazardous waste was disposed through secure landfill facility – 687.71 Ton in Captive SLF and 8308.1 Ton in Common SLF at treatment, storage, and disposal facility (TSDF).
Quantity of hazardous waste utilized under Rule 9 was 3566.25 Ton, sent to recyclers of Schedule-IV of the Rule 7458.87 Ton, and stored at occupier premises at the end of the year 9124.18 Ton.
The quantity of hazardous waste stored at occupier site stands to be more than 15.5% of the total hazardous waste generated and is more than the quantity disposed through SLF.
Further, 24595.06 Ton of hazardous waste was disposed through incinerator – 4135.4 Ton in Captive incinerator and 20459.66 Ton in Common incinerator at TSDF. The quantum of hazardous waste disposed through co-processing in cement kiln was 5089.1 Ton.
The above data offers space for some obvious questions. First, why should such a huge quantity of hazardous wastes be stored at the occupiers’ site? Whether the Haryana State Pollution Control Board (HSPCB) has sought reasons from the industries?
Secondly, why Haryana sticks to incineration method for disposal of nearly 42% of its hazardous waste as against 3.9% incineration at a national level?
Third, whether the quantity against SLF at TSDF also includes the quantity of ash generated from incinerator?
Fourth and most important one, Gujarat Enviro Protection and Infrastructure (Haryana) Pvt. Ltd. (GEPIL) is the TSDF provider in Haryana. Nearly 8.65% of the total hazardous wastes were disposed through co-processing. This method involves very less cost that could be merely to meet transportation and very little of handling the hazardous waste. But it reduces, cost of incineration, cost of pollution control measures due to incineration, cost of ash handling and disposal. This also increases the life of the TSDF site. Therefore, a huge cost saving is envisaged in the part of GEPIL in 2016-17 and subsequent years. Whether GEPIL has come out with any proposal to reduce the cost it charges to the industries?
On the other hand, industries should also review the characteristics of their wastes as reported in the Finger Print Analysis report issued by GEPIL. The report should also be cross-verified by some leading environmental laboratory such as Shriram Institute of Industrial Research. At the same time, industries and other members of GEPIL should demand more details and description under serial number 10 and 13 of the Manifest (Form-10).