|March 14, 2017||The CSR Journal|
Development regulations in Tamil Nadu are a taking a definite green turn, with the authorities involved considering a slew of proposals to address water, waste, green cover and other environmental concerns for all the new buildings. The initiative comes at a time when environmental issues are increasingly becoming a matter of serious concern. The move follows stipulation by the Ministry of Environment & Forests (MoEF), which directed states to categorise constructions into three segments - above 5,000 sqm and less than 20,000 sqm; above 20,000 sqm and less than 50,000 sqm; and above 50,000 sqm till 1.5 lakh sqm.
One of the most significant steps is a complete ban on construction activities on wetlands and water bodies. As per the proposals, all buildings spread over 20,000 sqm should prepare a complete plan for rainwater harvesting, water efficiency and conservation.
Such structures should also set up sewage treatment facility onsite, capable of treating all wastewater (100%) that is generated. Sludge from these onsite facilities will be collected and disposed in accordance with existing guidelines. However, sprawling buildings that extract huge quantities of groundwater may now have to take prior permission from competent authorities.
A proposal has been tabled to this effect to put a check on exploitation and rampant depletion of the water table. Also, developers will have to provide separate wet and dry bins in each unit, at the ground level, for segregation of waste.
There are also measures to check wastage of power and improve energy efficiency. The proposal mandates that at least 20% of hot water demands of commercial and industrial buildings be met using solar power and only LED bulbs can be used to meet lighting needs of common areas.
To ensure adequate green cover, the draft rules stipulate that the developer has to plant and maintain a native species tree for every 80 sqm of land. Wherever cutting a tree is unavoidable, three saplings should be planted and maintained as compensation, adds the draft.
Norms have been laid down even for construction sites, wherein workers involved in loading, unloading and carrying construction material have to be provided dust mask. Also, all construction and demolition debris has to be stored at the site itself before they are properly disposed.
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