CONCLUSIONS AND MITIGATIONS
The Nakkavagu basin has been thoroughly studied for Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) by considering the physical, biological, socio-economic and cultural, and water environments. Based on the studies and discussions made in the preceding chapters the following conclusions are drawn and certain mitigation measures are suggested.
1. Industrial activities including infrastructure and other associated developmental activities are concentrated in certain zones especially to the south-eastern quadrant of the basin. Polluted effluents and noxious gases being released and hazardous solid waste being dumped in the region. Consequently, physical, chemical and biological nature of surface environment was altered by these industries. Accumulation of pollutants over a period of time and with the expansion of existing industries coupled with the establishment of new industries in the region increased the impacts of pollution on the inhabitants of Nakkavagu basin.
2. The surface water and groundwater of Nakkavagu basin is polluted. Large traces of toxic elements like Hg, As, Se and Pb and high values of TDS, BOD and COD found in the polluted waters of Nakkavagu basin confirms this. When these elements in various compounds form get transferred through food chain is dangerous to the life.
3. Effluents in Nakkavagu polluted the groundwater sources around industrial areas and along the course of the streams. The contamination of groundwater resource has affected the agricultural sector. The ground water is polluted to the maximum on either side of the Nakkavagu, to a distance of 500 to 1000m.
4. The increase in the number of anaerobic tanks point to escalation of toxicity levels of the sediments getting deposited by the polluted waters.
5. The high industrial concentration (diverse set of industries) release different byproducts into the stream as hazardous wastes. These pollutants are a threat to the life in Nakkavagu basin.
6. There is a gross misuse of the concept and facility of CETP in Nakkavagu basin. The hazardous sludge’s dumped or consolidated in the open lands by these cost or infrastructure intensive treatment plants stand testimony to this.
7. Increased in-migration rates and corresponding preponderance of natives to agriculture and allied practices indicates that the welfare of local people has not exactly been on the positive side.
8. The loss of biodiversity and the emergence of the dominance of xerophytes such as prosopis juliflora species strongly point to land degradation within no major timeframe.
9. The distribution of various industrial clusters in the study area goes diagonally to the concept of land industrial development mooted by Central and State governments under the name ‘Patancheru industrial area’. The irregular distribution of industrial units irrespective of their nature of operations or requirements at the same place confirm improper execution of the development of Patancheru industrial area.
10. The concept of modern, pollution free industrial development through minimal or nil effluents release is unknown to; the residents of Nakkavagu basin, the industrial entrepreneurs of Nakkavagu basin and the planners and administrators looking after the industrial development in Nakkavagu basin.
1. Resistant plant species among the indigenous plant species should be identified through research, for planting them all along the polluted streams, on either side. A circular vegetative screen of diverse species should be planted around all the villages so as to decrease dust and air pollution. And all along the village roads a green belt can be raised.
2. Farmlands have become saline and toxic because of the use of polluted waters, which are rich in salts. Reclamation of saline soils is possible by two means: a) treatment of fields with gypsum and b) flooding of fields continuously with unpolluted water. So that the salts and other toxic elements will be washed away with the excess waters. Throughout the year at no time fields should not be exposed to harsh sun, and should be covered with vegetation. If they are exposed, salts from lower levels will move to the surface by capillary action and again form as incrustations.
3. Presently, there are chances of contamination of food crops due to pollution. Instead for the time being, raising commercial crops like jute, cotton, timber plants, etc., should be taken up.
4. The lack of zoning of industries increased the risk of pollution. Zoning the industries by categories the impact of environmental pollution can be reduced. Patancheru has a heterogeneous mix of industries, which complicates the problem of pollution. Effluents from varied industries are being treated at common effluent treatment plants. There is no effective method to treat such a complex of effluents.
5. Solid waste generated in industrial processing should be disposed off safely at secured landfill sites. There is need for creation of such a facility near Patancheru, and right now there is no such facility.
6. Analysis of effluents through parameters like pH, total solids, total suspended solids, total dissolved solids, chlorides, sulphates, COD, BOD, DO, Zn, Cd, Pb, Cr, Cu and few other parameters is not adequate. Organic and synthetic pollutants are a major threat in this area, but are rarely analysed. Therefore Pollution Control Boards (PCB’s) need to be better equipped with effective instruments for better monitoring and evaluation of pollution.
7. Prevention of water pollution is better than remedial action. Prevention of pollution at the source should be given top priority. By taking necessary steps, harm to human health and the environment can be lessened.
8. Industries are releasing untreated or partially treated effluents into the tanks. Such practices should be completely avoided. Catchment area protection and some measures should be taken for recovering the tanks as suggested below:
· Prevention of industrial effluents into the tank, diversion of effluents by laying pipeline system to safer place. Protected, lined sewerage system lessens dispersion of pollutants. This system could follow natural drainage system. And also trenching, bunding and diversion channels across for preventing the effluents entering into tanks from probable drains.
· A green belt covering periphery of the tank beyond full tank level should be maintained.
· Dredging or desilting the polluted tanks, emptying the tanks during summer. Followed by, the whole tank should be subjected to lime treatment. This activity is to be finished before monsoon. Whenever fresh rainwater gets accumulated during the rainy season, indigenous aquatic species of flora and fauna from the unpolluted tanks should be reintroduced, after checking the quality of the water. They should be monitored for one year, before handing it over to the water users committees of the respective villages.
· The sludge removed from the tanks should be safely disposed off as per ‘Hazardous Waste (Management and Handling) Rules, 1989’.
9. Instead of providing compensation to the farmers in terms of money for crop losses due to pollution, State government should take necessary steps to reclaim the polluted lands and in providing the irrigation facilities from unpolluted sources.
10. Location of industries at Patancheru is never justifiable, as this region is rightly suitable for agriculture. Most polluting industries and all those, which are not complying with the rules under various environmental Acts and Rules, should be closed immediately.
11. Pollution cess should be collected from each polluting industry, right from the inception, so as to compensate the potential victims of pollution and in case of any major industrial hazard.
12. ‘Polluter pays’ principle should be made mandatory to make the polluters responsible. All the polluted villages must be provided free drinking water to cater to the needs of people and their domestic animals, payable by the polluting industries.
13. To monitor the local climate, a meteorological station should be established at Patancheru or Bollaram, in order to measure other than normal parameters like air pollution, acidity of rain, smog etc. The air pollution would also contaminate the hydrological system.