NGO claims waste-to-electricity plants may release harmful toxin

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New Delhi, June 9 (UNI) A non-governmental organisation today claimed that the a municipal waste to electricity generation plant being set up in Delhi may release harmful toxins in the environment, against the claim of the company.

It claimed that Timarpur-Okhla Waste Management Company Pvt Ltd has started constructions for the dioxins emitting incinerator based municipal waste to electricity plants in the residential areas of Delhi.

''These companies are claiming that there would be no heavy metal laden fly ash, 'no stack and 'no emissions' that pose a risk to health and environment...these claims are manifestly incorrect and they pose a grave risk to human health due to toxic emissions from incineration and co-incineration processes,'' claimed Toxics Watch.

The NGO claimed that the fact is these processes involve incineration/combustion as an essential component. All of these technologies emit dioxins and other harmful pollutants, and are defined as incineration by the US Environmental Protection Agency.

Dioxin is the common name for 75 toxic chemicals that are unwanted by-products of manufacturing and combustion processes when chlorine and carbon-containing materials are combined.

Even at very low exposure -- at levels of parts per trillion -- dioxin causes immune system damage, hormone disruption, and reproductive and development effects, it added. ''Those most at risk of receiving the highest concentrations are babies...Studies also show elevated levels of dioxin in the blood of people living near municipal solid waste incinerators when compared to the general population,'' the NGO said adding dioxins travel long distances in the atmosphere and is found on plants, in water, soil, grazing animals and humans.

UNI NAB RL RN1558

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