Waste management Gujranwala
The Gujranwala City District Government’s solid waste department (SWD) has had the capacity of lifting only 50 per cent of the total MSW and the rest remains on the roads, streets, vacant areas and even in grounds. Such a huge quantity of MSW has been causing social as well as environmental problems, but no immediate solution is foreseen anywhere.
Gujranwala is one of the most thickly populated cities in the country, having a population of about 2 million. According to a recent survey of the Punjab Planning and Development Department, some 800 to 900 tons of municipal solid waste (MSW) is being produced daily in the city. The survey disclosed per capita increase of 1.5 per cent annually while the population of the city has been increasing at the ratio of 3 to 3.5 per cent per annum, which reflects yearly 5 per cent increase in the MSW.
The survey reveals that 35 to 50 per cent of the MSW is bio-gradable and can be converted into biogas. Some 15 to 20 per cent inert material can be used for landfills and 15 to 20 per cent recyclable material can be redirected to recycling purpose. Gujranwala is a city known for its healthy wrestlers and delicious foods, but the aforesaid circumstances have been changing its identity with the ever-increasing ratio of liver diseases, especially hepatitis-infected diseases, tuberculosis, waterborne diseases like gastroenteritis, typhoid, diarrhoea and cholera.
The MSW has become an unsolvable problem for the CDG and has surrendered before these problems for lack of funds. Under these circumstances, the Planning and Development Department organised a seminar at Gujranwala Chamber of Commerce and Industry to invite local investors to initiate a joint venture with the city district government for 100 per cent consumption of the lifted MSW on daily basis. P&D Project Director Nasir Javed and SWM specialist Dr Kiran Farhan gave a comprehensive briefing on the installation of a segregation treatment disposal (STD) plant and its social and commercial benefits.
It was told that resources would be saved for the option of STD plant. The members of the GCCI were assured that an estimated investment of Rs 244 million would be required while the CDG would be responsible for the provision of land. STD and biogas plants could be beneficial for investment besides solving the decades-old problem of solid waste. Although the GCCI members took an interest in it, none of them gave a serious response or showed interest in investing in the proposed public-private sector project.
Even if the government can’t find any investment in this project, it should come forward itself for the sake of citizens’ health and environmental problems.
GEPCO ISSUES DISCONNECTION NOTICES TO GOVT DEPTS: Gujranwala Electric Power Company (GEPCO) has issued notices to recover Rs 253.1 million from public sector departments, warning of disconnection if dues are not cleared before May 31. The Punjab government departments as well as the judiciary and armed forces’ wing are among the defaulters and have been given notices.
The Gujranwala WASA is on top of the list with Rs77.1 million. The sessions court complex is defaulter of Rs 2.4 million, Punjab Police, Rs 15.8 million, Pakistan Railways, Rs 13.2 million, Central Jail, Rs 6.9 million, Scarp, Rs 3 million, Irrigation Department Rs 6.3 million, Pakistan Rangers Rs 16.8 million, the city district government, Rs 3.4 million, the DHQ hospital, Rs1.8 million, the district health office, Hafizabad, Rs 1.3 million, the district health office, Sialkot, Rs8.8 million, DHQ Hospital Sialkot, Rs 1.1 million, TMA Wazirabad, Rs 6 million, TMA Sialkot, Rs 59.4 million, TMA Gujrat, Rs 12.4 million, TMA Kharian, Rs2.6 million, TMA Khali Shahpur, Rs 1.2 million, TMA Qila Dedar Singh, Rs 3.5 million, TMA Aroop Rs1.9 million and TMA Nandipur, Rs 2.9 million.
The GEPCO has requested the heads of these departments to ensure payments, so that power supply could be provided without any interruption. It also warned that responsibility of any inconvenience to the public due to suspension of power would lie on the respective departments.