Monday, November 4, 2013

Environmentalist suggests non-burning of wastes
To deal with the huge volume of garbage produced by towns and cities, an eminent environmental activist of Assam has emphasizes on promoting non-burning technologies.
Aashim K Chatterjee, who strongly opposes the open burning of garbage, argued that the practice could help curbing level of pollution in the air.
Attending a programme recently on in Guwahati Press Club, Chatterjee pointed out that the increase of dioxin in the air was because of open burning of various wastes that invited a number of cancerous diseases to the human health system. He also asserted that  the “waste which cannot be reused, recycled, or composted cleanly, should be land-filled rather than incinerated as it would help in lesser release of dioxin to the environment.” The dioxin is a nomenclature given to a large group of chemical compounds with similar structure those are made up of Carbon, Oxygen, Hydrogen and Chlorine atoms. “Burning of municipal waste, bio-medical waste, backyard blazing and automobile emissions continue to contribute to the release of dioxin into the environment, which is feared as one of the most common and causative agents of cancer,” said Chatterjee, who is considered an expert in waste management process for more than a decade now. “We are exposed to dioxin through the air that we breathe. The pollutants in the air carry large amounts of it which could target us at any given instance. Hence we must limit its release into the environment,” said the activist. The statistics of cancer patients in Assam was the highest in Northeast India. According to a list prepared in 2011-2012 by the activist, Assam had 4443 cancer patients followed by Meghalaya with 101 cases. The other states of the region had less than hundred reported cancer patients. Nagaland had 84, Arunachal Pradesh 65, Mizoram 59, Manipur 38 and Tripura had the lowest of 14 cases. Chatterjee has been on a mission to generate public awareness on the growing menace of air, water and surface pollution across the region by imparting training, technical knowhow and waste management services to a large number of hospitals in Assam. He also stressed on the strict implementation of legislations with an aim to curb the menace of dioxin.

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