State Of Savar Tannery Estate-Part 1
Waste polluting Dhaleswari as CETP not fully operational
Published : Monday, 2 September, 2019 at 12:00 AM Count : 691
The Savar Ternary Park is spreading pollution of air and water in and around the newly built industrial estate largely because of the failure of the authorities concerned to fully install the Central Effluent Treatment Plant (CETP) to treat the solid wastes and effluents.
Many tanneries are yet to go into full operation and those already started to operate in the tannery estate are causing the pollution threatening local environment and public health. River Dhaleshwari is now under new threat of water pollution from the release of poisonous liquid in the river water.
The CETP was supposed to treat the wastes and poisonous water but since it is not fully installed and not properly functioning, waste is going direct to the river through canals and such other discharge outlets.
Industry Ministry sources said around 73.43 per cent work of the CETP has been completed till June this year. During a visit to Savar Tannery Park last week, this correspondent found solid wastes littered in the open spaces, polluting the environment of the surrounding areas, while the CETP was not fully functioning.
With a daily capacity of treating 25,000 cubic metres of wastes, the CETP was scheduled to be fully operational in 2016 after a Chinese firm Ling Xi Environment began the construction in 2014.
The implementation of the project was going slow for several reasons and the authorities were to extend the deadline nine times so far -- the latest being in June 30 this year.
As per report some basic components of the plant are yet to be installed and according to experts a partially completed CETP has little effect in waste management as well as protecting the environment.
Experts said, untreated poisonous wastes from the leather factories are now seriously polluting another major river -- the Dhaleshwari after Buriganga, putting at stake its existence and biodiversity in and around the river.
They said the water quality of the river has already seriously degraded due to the flow of liquid and solid wastes, including the high level of concentrated chromium and salt.
The spot visit showed the liquid waste is running but the CEPT is failing to properly treat the wastes. These wastes are not being properly filtered and purified. Nearby Dhaleshwari river is taking the brunt of the pollution. Jitendranath Pal, Director of the Leather Industries Project (PD), told the Daily Observer, a total of 1,600 parameters are involved in protecting the environment and out of it 100 are related to the CETP. But since it is not properly installed, the situation is only worsening.
He said, in order to increase export of leather and leather products, serious efforts are underway to improve the quality of the production process of the factories set up in the leather industrial estate.
He said, some necessary equipment have been imported, but these are still lying in Chittagong port. Once these will be installed waste dumping will see clear improvement.
Despite huge investment, the failure so far to make the tannery estate environment-friendly, danger lurks in Savar Leather Industrial Estate as solid wastes are being dumped in the open air and canals. The CETP is yet to start full-fledged operation.
The sludge dewatering house has no impact as the electro-mechanical part is yet to be installed. The electrical control cabinet is waiting to be imported from China, say tannery estate officials.
Besides, three chromium recovery units, with a treatment capacity of 350 cubic metres each have been only partly installed and failing to recover the contaminating chemical.
According to Industry Ministry Sources, the total CETP cost was estimated at Tk 605.65 crore while the total tannery estate cost now stands at Tk 1,078.71.