Karachi - Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has approved Rs63.781 million for the completion of Combined Effluent Treatment Plant (CETP) in Kotri and directed the industries department to conduct survey of the industrial units in the city so that implementation of environmental rules could be ensured. He issued these directives while presiding over a meeting held here at the CM House on treatment of effluent on Tuesday.

The meeting was attended by P&D Minister Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani, Minister for Environment Mohammad Ali Malkani, P&D Chairman Mohammad Waseem, Advocate General Sindh Zameer Ghumro, Principal Secretary to CM Sohail Rajput, Secretary Industries Abdur Raheem Soomro and others.

Secretary Industries Abdur Raheem Soomro said that the SITE Ltd had taken over Kotri’s combined effluent treatment plant on the orders of the Supreme Court (SC). “SITE is doing the rest to make it functional,” he added.

Giving details of the remaining work at the treatment plant, secretary industries said that all the tanks had been desilted, and that work was being done by another contractor.

Talking about compliance with SC orders, the secretary said that 1,700 notices and subsequently reminders were issued to various industries. “Around 50 units have responded and necessary action will be taken against those who fail to respond,” he informed.

Replying to another question, he said five treatment plants, to be completed at the cost of Rs11390 million, were in the pipeline.

“The one taken over by SITE spreads over 25 acres of land, and it would cost Rs2.243 million; Trans-Lyari CETP has a design discharge of 27 MDG for which 35 acres of land is available and it will cost Rs3,672 million; FB Area/North Karachi has 12 MGD design discharge and seven acres of land has been procured for it, and its cost would come to Rs1,590 million; Landhi/Korangi CETP has 26 MGD discharge and it would be built over 35 acres of land at the cost of around Rs3,258 million, while The Highway SITE Phase-2 is to have 10 MGD design discharge, and it will be constructed at the cost of Rs627 million over 10.45 acres of land.

P&D Chairman Mohammad Waseem, while briefing the chief minister, said that five CETPs would help implement the government’s policy on fighting pollution. He added that the project would also help control the indiscriminate discharge of heavily polluted waste and improve the condition of receiving water body, thus ensuring environmentally sustainable social and economic development of the area. Minister for Environment Mohammad Ali Malkani said that Sindh Environment Protection Agency (EPA) had been made functional and it had presented 37 reports on water quality so far. He added that action had been initiated on the basis of these reports.

The minister said that 10 more district offices of EPA were to be built for which funds were required. The chief minister issued directives for the release of Rs100 million for the purpose.

Secretary Environment Baqaullah Unar told the meeting that 25 cases had been submitted before Sindh Environmental Tribunal.

He added that 35 industrial units had been directed to install in-house wastewater treatment plants and prepare environmental management plans (EMP) for taking appropriate measures to control pollution.

He disclosed that due to the intervention of EPA, 125 industrial units had installed wastewater treatment plants.

He further informed that the leather industries at Kotri and Korangi had installed 100 treatment plants which were working properly.

The chief minister said that there were reports of dust emission in the industrial areas of the city.

Minister for Environment Mohammad Ali Malkani replied that some 62 notices had been issued to crushing units and action was being taken.

He further told that the EPA had recovered Rs2.2 million from 11 different industrial units for violating EPA rules.

The chief minister directed the industries and environment departments to work together and ensure installation of treatment plants at industrial units. “This is a serious issue,” he said, and ordered, “This must be taken seriously and he be submitted reports after every fortnight.”