Panaji: The Goa government’s decision to put in place a waste management protocol from the day it was clear that the 37th National Games would be held in the coastal state in October-November this year has ensured that the venues have been garbage free and well sanitized through the fortnight.
Over 10,000 players competed across the state in 42 sports disciplines and ensuring that the venues, the surrounding area and the streets stay clean and garbage free was an enormous task.
Swetika Sachan, the Chief Executive Officer of the 37th National Games Organising Committee (NGOC), was quick to form a committee under the supervision of Levinson Martins, Managing Director, Goa Waste Management Corporation, to prepare and oversee waste management and related guidelines.
This committee set guidelines, in which it was mainly decided that single-use plastic would not be permitted during the Games.
Sachan says, “We formed a Waste Management Committee, the command of which was handed over to a capable officer like Levinson. Then we prepared guidelines for waste management and cleanliness at the venues. Subsequently, SFA, the event management company of the Goa National Games, appointed VMP for the management of wet and dry waste.”
Pointing out that emphasis was laid on ensuring that catering waste is properly segregated and no wet or dry waste is visible in the open at any venue, Sachan said, “Our main focus was on food waste. We ensured that food waste was not dumped anywhere. It should be properly segregated and transported to the dumping area in covered trucks as often as required.”
The Waste Management Committee also kept an eye on housekeeping and ensured that no garbage was scattered at the venues.
“We accomplished this with the help of the Panchayat, Goa Waste Management Corporation and the local municipal body. For this we would like to thank all the stakeholders of the state,” she added.
The Goa government is very sensitive about ensuring that there is no sign of garbage at the venue and hence it was decided that they worked directly with the government corporation, panchayat, local sarpanch and local municipal corporation.
“We worked in such a way that we want to ensure that we returned the venues the way they were handed over to us. We also banned single use plastic and asked the service providers to use good quality ceramic or glass cutlery that is made of biodegradable materials for the used of athletes and others.”
It is noteworthy that more than 40 sports are being organized at eight different places in Goa. Apart from those working for government bodies, there are over 100 people employed by VMP working behind the scenes to manage the wet and dry waste generated from each venue.
Vivek Mishra, Director of Operations, VMP, said that the waste generated from each venue is transported through dustbins to a transfer station, where this waste is separated into dry and wet types. Dry waste and wet waste are kept in separate bins which are of different colors and then these bins are loaded in trucks and taken to another place. There is a separate truck for wet waste and a separate truck for dry waste.”
Project Manager Madhavi Mishra, who is looking after the waste management at the Campal Open Ground, said that more than 1500 kg of garbage comes out from eight different venues every day. “A total of 12 trucks are carrying all the waste from five different venues to the waste management plant.
“While taking garbage to the dumping site, care is taken that it does not fall anywhere on the way nor does it spread a foul smell. The weight of the waste is taken after the waste reaches Hindustan Waste Management (Saligaon) and Kakoda Plant,” she added.