The Ghazipur landfill had reached its capacity 15 years ago in 2002, but for over a decade and a half, the East Delhi Municipal Committee (EDMC) kept dumping garbage there for the lack of an alternative landfill. The Ghazipur landfill, which has been operational since 1984, as a result, had been piling up garbage much above its permitted height of 20 meters. The municipal corporations of Delhi have been permitting this pile-up for 15 years. The Ghazipur landfill was not designed in accordance with the Municipal Solid Waste Rules of 2000, which mandates eco-friendly waste management facilities. The Mayor of the East Delhi Municipal Corporation, Neema Bhagat, told the Indian Express that the various steps are being taken to reduce the pressure on the landfill, one of these measures is the construction of the Delhi-Meerut highway using garbage as construction material. The negotiations for this project began in 2013 and a Memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed in December 2016, tenders were invited in August 2017, but it was too late to avoid Friday’s incidence, as per an Indian Express report.
What Delhi needs is not a new place to dispose of waste, but better methods of waste disposal. One of the major problems of waste management in the national capital is failure to not adopt more modern methods of waste disposal. A few smaller cities in India such as Mysuru in Karnataka, Panaji in Goa, Pune in Maharashtra, Surat in Gujarat and Suryapet in Andhra Pradesh have successfully adopted efficient and modern waste management practices. Some of these practices include decentralisation of waste management and segregation of garbage at source. None of the municipal bodies in the national capital segregate garbage into dry waste, recyclables and organic matter, the Times of India reported.
The South Corporation in Delhi has been allotted a 50-acres of land in Tekhand, where the civic body plans to set up a scientific landfill and will install waste-to-energy and composting plants. Of this 50acre plot, 38 acres will be used for storing waste and the remaining 12 acres will be used to convert waste to energy and for composting. Apart from this, an 8-acre plot will also be utilised for composting of biodegradable material close to Azadpur Mandi, as per ToI.