DIMAPUR, JUNE 8: Nagaland Government’s failure to tackle the problem of waste management in the State has come into focus once again following the damning contents of ‘The State of India’s Environment 2023’ report released recently.
As featured in Nagaland Page, the report revealed that Nagaland is among the 11 States/Union Territories in the country that are yet to even start the process of remediating legacy waste. It also showed that Nagaland is among the 10 States with the highest unaccounted municipal waste in the country.
“The blame for this pathetic condition falls both on the public and the municipalities as neither are doing their job of waste management sincerely”, said a senior Government official of Kohima who, understandably, requested anonymity.
According to her, the report truly reflects “what we see daily in our urban spaces of Kohima and Dimapur”.
“There are piles and piles of untreated garbage all around. When the garbage is collected, they are not segregated but both biodegradable and non-biodegradable wastes are dumped together”, she said.
Also, the officer pointed out that household wastes are not segregated by members of the public at their primary disposal “mostly because public feels it’s of no use as the municipalities will dump all the garbage together in one landfill, hence the discouragement”.
“All landfills are filling up not just at Kohima and Dimapur but other districts as well and if the Urban Planning and municipalities keep ignoring this grave issue, it will impact all of us negatively”, she said adding that the municipalities need to not only collect waste efficiently but also segregate, dispose, treat and recycle these waste instead of simply dumping in the landfills, water bodies, etc.
“Unless our urban development polices cater to the needs of sustainable waste management, we will continue to fare poorly in all scales and parameters of sustainability, cleanliness and healthy life”, the officer said.
Abe Tep, a Senior Technical Engineer, said that though the problem of the waste dumping and waste management in Nagaland has been raised, discussed and written about frequently, there is still no sign of change.
“The size of the garbage mountains are only increasing daily with no proper plans of treatment of waste”, she said.
Tep also raised concern over the failure to properly enforce environmental guidelines. “Although there have been recent developments and improvements, more source segregation and awareness campaigns could further improve Nagaland’s waste management system”, she suggested.
Sowa Tep, a Graduate of Patkai Christian College, shared that lack of seriousness towards the issue is a major reason why Nagaland Government continues to fail in effective waste management.
“With the present scenario, I only wish the Government to seriously initiate more awareness campaigns and advertisements, warning the people about the adverse effects of excess waste and introduce new, advanced technology to be used for the disposal of waste”, Tep said.
Another student of Patkai Christian College said that the waste management problem in Nagaland has always been there. “The Government of Nagaland has failed to tackle this specific problem”, the student said.
This report was filed by Kesin Tep, a student of Patkai Christian College, Chumoukedima, who is interning at Nagaland Page
(Page News Service)