The Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) is considering amendments to its Building Rules to accommodate provisions for controlling air pollution at the time of demolition of a building and the management of demolition waste thereafter. The KMC is working towards amending its Building Rules and introducing provisions to curb the immense amount of pollution that is caused during demolition of a building and thereafter, by the debris.

It is learnt from KMC sources that in a meeting of the implementation committee for the national clean air programme, it was decided that a standard operating procedure needs to be followed for new construction or demolition of buildings to lessen air pollution. The director general (DG) of the KMC building department has been directed to amend the Building Rules and add the provisions under Rule 20.

In a mayor-in-council meeting, the proposal to amend the bye-laws by the solid waste management (SWM) department in consultation with the building department and other stakeholders responsible for generation of construction and demolition waste, was considered and approved. It is learnt that the decision has been taken following the orders of the National Green Tribunal and recommendations of an air quality monitoring committee which stressed on minimising pollution at the time of demolition of a building structure.

An official of the civic body explained that once the amendment is done to Rule 20, the new addition to the existing provision will specify that “every person who intends to demolish or part thereof shall give in writing to the municipal commissioner along with undertaking stating that the demolition work will be executed maintaining the construction and demolition waste management rules 2016.”

The format of the undertaking document will specify certain guidelines such as solid waste should not get mixed with demolition waste and should be deposited separately. Secondly, the demolition waste must be kept within the boundary of premises and there should be no littering or deposition of demolition waste obstructing traffic or public or drainage systems. Materials such as concrete, steel, wood, bricks mortar and plastic shall be segregated at site in line with environmental norms to control air pollution.

The waste management plan as approved by the KMC must be followed. Further, the estimated quantum of generated waste of project site and waste generation in one day during demolition work has to be specified and it needs to be certified and signed by the Licence Building Surveyor (LBS) or the architect concerned. If the generated waste is more than 20 tons or more in one day or 300 tons in one month, the waste management plan and approval of the concerning department needs to be submitted before starting demolition work.