The Union Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change (MoEF&CC) has created mechanisms to assess the build up of plastic waste.
They have, however, developed no such mechanisms for the disposal and collection of waste, as declared by a report from the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India. This audit was conducted on 21 December 2022.
MoEF&CC has been, due to the lack of any mechanisms related to waste collection, incapable of effectively implementing the Plastic Waste Management (PWM) Rules, 2016. The report also points out a lack of coordination with Pollution Control Boards on the Ministry's part.
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The performance audit revealed that while the MoEF&CC and the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) do have mechanisms for the assessment of waste generation, they do not have the complete database about all the various kinds of waste being generated countrywide.
This could lead to insufficient recognition by policy makers and the public with respect to the requirements for efficient waste management.
Additionally, there has also been inadequate promotion of recycle and reuse friendly products via the ministry's environmental education and consumer information programmes.
There is a lack of centralised governance in regards to waste disposal. No single body has been identified for the proper monitoring of waste rules at the level of the Central Government. This has led to a gap in accountability that has rendered the rules of waste disposal entirely ineffective.
The rules that were framed for safe disposal of waste failed to consider the disposal construction along with demolition waste, electronic waste and agricultural waste.
The report reasoned that the mismanagement of waste disposal was because:
"The problem of non-compliance to rules for the management and handling of municipal solid waste, bio-medical waste and plastic waste was further compounded by lax and inefficient monitoring. In the absence of efficient monitoring, violation of rules escaped detection."CAG Environment Reports on Waste Management
The CAG report provided the following recommendations for the CPCB and the MoEF&CC to cover ground against the fallbacks noted in the report:
The CPCB should carry out periodical assessments of the amount of waste generated and create a database to aid policy making
MoEF&CC should create a database regarding the growth of various kinds of waste to analyse the factors contributing to the increase in waste generatio
MoEF&CC/CPCB should estimate the capacity to handle waste and ensure additional capacity of waste infrastructure for safe disposal
MoEF&CC may carry out pollution impact monitoring to study the effects of improper waste disposal.
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