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Union Carbide Tragedy: Centre To Take Measures For Safe Disposal Of Hazardous Waste

Soil and groundwater around the Union Carbide premises and Bhopal have become contaminated due to presence of hazardous waste

New Delhi: The Centre has decided to take various measures for remediation of areas affected by the 1984 Bhopal Gas Tragedy, including safe disposal of identified quantity of hazardous waste of the erstwhile Union Carbide factory, the Rajya Sabha was informed today. Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan said this in written reply to a question on the cleaning up of toxic areas in and around the former pesticide factory of the Union Carbide India Ltd.

He also said the “government of Madhya Pradesh has come up with a proposal for remediation of contaminated sites in and around the UCIL premises, and the construction of Bhopal Gas Tragedy Memorial”.

“The government has decided to take remediation measures, including safe disposal of identified quantity of hazardous waste of the erstwhile Union Carbide India Ltd. (UCIL), Bhopal,” Dr Harsh Vardhan said.

Trial incineration of 10 tonnes of actual UCIL waste was carried out at common hazardous waste treatment, storage and disposal facility (TSDF), Pithampur (Indore) from August 13-18, 2015, under the supervision of Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), Madhya Pradesh Pollution Control Board and the Environment Ministry, he said.

Disposal of remaining 337 tonnes of waste and remediation of site will be done by the government of Madhya Pradesh, as decided by the Union Cabinet on June 24, 2010, the environment minister said in the written reply.

Regarding remediation of contaminated area, various studies have been conducted by reputed institutions such as NEERI and Indian Institute of Toxicology Research (IITR), it said.

“The studies indicate that there is contamination of soil and ground water in and around the UCIL premises,” Dr Harsh Vardhan said.

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