Mumbai: Producing waste by the tonne again

Updated: 30 September, 2020 09:25 IST | Prajakta Kasale | Mumbai

Amount of daily garbage generation reaches 80% of what it used to be pre-lockdown, officials expect further increase

BMC's conservancy staff collect biomedical waste from a hospital in Dongri. Pic/Suresh Karkera
BMC's conservancy staff collect biomedical waste from a hospital in Dongri. Pic/Suresh Karkera

While Mumbaikars are adjusting and adapting to the new normal, in one aspect the city has gone back to the old normal — garbage generation. The volume of garbage today has increased to 80 per cent of what it used to be in pre-COVID times.

During the initial complete lockdown, the city's garbage had been reduced by almost half. After the eventual opening of restaurants, the city's garbage generation will be back to pre-lockdown figures. Garbage segregation has also taken a backseat amid the pandemic.

The collection, transportation and the dumping grounds have been a perennial issue in the city. Two years ago, the city's garbage collection reached 9,000 tonnes daily.

It was reduced to 6,500 tonnes through various actions and campaigns.

In April, it was 3,500-4,000 tonnes as most restaurants and home delivery services closed and there was less wastage in vegetables/fruit/flower markets. Using food carefully at home and the absence of the floating population of 30 to 40 lakh people also contributed.

"Around 5,500 tonnes of garbage is being collected from the city. Of this, 500 tonnes go to Deonar and the rest to the Kanjurmarg," said an officer from the Solid Waste Management (SWM) department of the civic body. He added that collection may increase by another 600-700 tonnes once restaurants restart.

"In the pandemic, garbage collection saw a shortage of staff so segregation of wet and dry waste took a hit. Most of the staff was on COVID-19 duty. Once things get back to normal, citizens should resume following good practices," the official added.

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First Published: 30 September, 2020 07:18 IST

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