Governor Dr. S. S. Sidhu called for an effective and efficient management of solid waste in the state in order to protect peoples’ health, preserve environment and promote tourism, while speaking at the high level meeting held at Raj Bhavan on Friday.
The governor conducted a review solid waste management in municipal and panchayat areas. He stated that Goa should gain positive points on promoting tourism as it is one of the ten ‘tourist hot spots’ in the world.
Dr. Sidhu stressed that solid waste management should be done through the concerted efforts of all government agencies concerned. Pointing out that Goa has the highest per capita income in the country; he said Goa’s positive image should be preserved and enhanced for accelerated development, including tourism.
The governor also suggested that Goa should aim to become a plastic free zone. He said that as far as solid waste management is concerned, plastic was a major problem and it was necessary to dispose it.
On the problem of garbage disposal in coastal villages, the governor suggested constitution of a committee chaired by the Chief Secretary and Secretary (Urban Development) and Secretary (Panchayat), Secretary (Tourism), Secretary (Environment) and Chairman of the Goa State Pollution Control Board as its members to study the problems of waste management particularly in coastal areas and recommend the steps within a month or so. He said he would take up this issue in the next Goa State Environment Protection Council meeting.
Urban Development Minister Joaquim Alemao informed that out of 14 municipal areas, four are running their garbage treatment plants. These include Margao, Cuncolim, Sanquelim and Bicholim. He also informed that May end this year, more seven municipal councils will set up their garbage disposal treatment plants.
Referring to the Corporation of the City of Panaji, he said the Government has already given a grant of Rs. 8.58 crore to set up solid waste management plant.
Panchayat Minister Manohar Azgaonkar said that 169 panchayats in the State have identified sites for garbage disposal, out of which, 73 Panchayats have taken clearance from Goa State Pollution Control Board (GSPCB).