Kochi to instal incinerator to treat sanitary waste
In order to treat disposable diapers and sanitary napkins, the Kochi corporation is planning to install an incinerator at the solid waste treatment plant at Brahmapuram. Currently the local body is not collecting disposable diapers and napkins since they don’t have a facility to treat it. This has led to napkins getting accumulated in water bodies and roadsides, adding to the environmental pollution.
No agency has so far conducted a study to assess the amount of sanitary waste generated in the city. Though sanitary waste is not being collected, workers at the plant come across diapers or napkins along with food waste.
A senior health official admitted there was a directive to set up an incinerator to treat sanitary waste. But corporation health standing committee chairperson T K Ashraf has denied this.
As per the Bio-Medical Waste Management Rules, the items contaminated with blood and body fluids, including cotton, dressings, soiled plaster casts, linens and beddings, are biomedical waste, which should be incinerated, autoclaved or microwaved to destroy pathogens. “The correct procedure is to take back the used diapers and napkins by the manufacturers themselves under extended producers responsibility (EPR). They should approach the local body for implementing it. But nothing happens as per rules. The immediate measure is incinerating the sanitary waste as per biomedical waste treatment methods where double chambers are used with high temperature,” said pollution control board (PCB) environmental engineer (Ernakulam) M A Baiju.
Another PCB official in Thiruvananthapuram said incinerating the sanitary waste in 950 degrees Celsius will help remove dioxane and other chemical components.