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  • 1. FUTURE CITIES Ensuring world class civic amenities in urban India Facilitating India’s rapid urbanization through effective city governance, and its implementation in city waste management Four and A Half Men Anirudh Srivatsa Ankur Agarwal Ankit Verma Amarnath M. Aditya U. IIT MADRAS
  • 2. Government schemes already exist for tackling major issues related to urbanization. The key problem lies in their effective implementation. Present urban infrastructure cannot support the rapidly increasing population of cities leading to various headaches:- ● Primary issues include city governance, waste management, road transport, water supply and sanitation, affordable housing, revenue collection and energy efficiency ● Inadequate capacities of municipalities, absence of long term city planning and an ad hoc approach identified as reasons for limited success of government schemes like JnNURM ● City governance is a very important issue to be tackled so as to implement efficient execution of schemes and policies ● The 74th Constitutional Amendment (1992) outlines 18 functions that should be transferred from state to urban local bodies. However, decision making on key issues still rests with the state government and not with the local body ● Urban Local Bodies often face a revenue crunch due to various reasons, which includes delays in implementation, leading to escalating project costs 2001-11: While 40mn of the increase is due to natural growth, 22mn is due to rural to urban migration 1
  • 3. ● Implementation of the 74th Constitutional Amendment in full should be an important agenda for the 2014 elections ● The municipal corporation may also be allowed to play a role in the selection and appointment of the municipal commissioner (the State-appointed IAS officer with all the powers of the executive) ● Municipal commissioner to have a fixed term of five years, cannot be transferred out arbitrarily by the state government. A long term is necessary so that he/she has time to put their plans into action and have a long- term interest in the city and its affairs ● Setting up an accountability platform : a city-level tier of the Lokpal/Lokayukta with powers to keep a close watch on all city-level government activities, to nip corruption at the grassroots level ● Well defined division of roles and incomes (like union/state/concurrent lists) between the metropolitan authority and the state government to avoid conflict of jurisdictions ● Setting up of a citizens’ forum that actively promotes citizen participation in governing the city; this would also help in reducing conflicts between the people and the government over various contentious issues like land acquisition Increasing city government autonomy Active citizen participation Restructuring Municipal Corporations 2
  • 4. Restructuring of Municipal Corporations to promote community participation ○ Fewer number of citizens per ward (25k-30k people per ward for large cities, 8k-10k for smaller cities) . For example, the number of wards with elected representatives per city is ~350 for Chennai,~ 800 for Mumbai, ~175 for Madurai, etc., a lot more than the current 200, 227 and 100 respectively ○ Rotation system for the councillors of wards- every corporator gets a four-year term, with one-fourth of all the corporators retiring every year (like the Rajya Sabha). This increases the corporation’s accountability to the general public, and also gives a chance for new, motivated citizens to enter the fray every year ○ A half-yearly citizens’ forum (elected corporator of that ward to be head) of about 25 members to be instituted every 6 months, to advise the corporator on local issues and also implement city schemes in their own locality if deemed feasible ○ Selection of forum members to be a formal process conducted by the winning ward corporator (like interviews and discussions with the ward corporator), and should include prominent members from locality-specific associations (like presidents of residents’ housing societies, heads of locality shopkeepers’ and traders’ unions, schoolteachers (principal of the local school), doctors (head doctor from the local hospital), businessmen, engineers, and a few political workers of the ward corporator’s party), forum to be scrutinized by the City Lokpal on a regular basis ○ The citizen forums will collect feedback from the general public and implement schemes which require active community involvement (like civic awareness programmes; local monitoring of education, health and water situations; local area development; waste collection and management- a detailed solution to be presented) ○ Compulsory half-yearly review of work done by the citizens’ forum, and proper accounting of the ward accounts and funds to be done (and the details made public) and implementation of public feedback (feedback collected by the citizens’ Forum via opinion polls online and on-field surveys) ○ Feedback results to be passed on to the Municipal Commissioner’s team on a regular basis, who will take the necessary steps 3
  • 5. Mayor (Elected Official) Ward Councillor (Elected Official, ~25000 people per ward) Citizens’ Forum (25 citizens chosen by councillor) Citizens Direct Interaction Municipal Commissioner (Executive Official) Administrative Departments of the corporation Effective Implementation of schemes Feedback and Advice City Lokpal (eminent panel of judges from the city) NEW! NEW! NEW! 4
  • 6. Conceptual and implementation risks involved ● Conceptual Imperfections ○ Involvement of a lot of people in the decision making process may lead to more confusion ○ Disproportionate representation of some interest groups in the forum who may have a greater influence than the rest within the ward ○ Funding for local projects still remains a key issue ● Practical Difficulties ○ Time delays in implementation as decisions may take longer to reach a consensus ○ Lack of political will to involve common citizens in the decision making process ○ Increased scope for corruption in the citizens’ forum ○ Lack of interest among people to participate in city planning leading to appointment of undeserving people ○ Power struggles between members of the citizens’ forum ● Mitigation of problems faced ○ Time-bound targets to boost productivity of the council members ○ Five of the most productive members to be retained in the council for a second term ○ Autonomous City Lokpal to overlook the citizen forum’s activities ○ Citizens’ forum to be changed half yearly to prevent power struggles and monopoly of power 5
  • 7. Waste Management Systems Now we present a possible example as to how well-managed community participation along with sufficient government support (as per the previous suggestions on city governance) and resources can be used to handle efficient waste segregation and disposal practices in a city in an environment-friendly and sustainable manner. ● Present schemes like JnNURM provide funds for asset creation and not for its efficient operation and maintenance ● Municipal solid waste (MSW) management is part of a broader urbanization problem • Waste generation is an indispensable outcome of rapid urbanization. Cities with maximum urbanization are also the largest contributors to solid waste (as depicted) • A major fraction of urban MSW in India is organic matter (51%). Recyclables are 17.5 % of the MSW and the rest 31% is inert waste • Absence of source separation eliminates the possibility of treating organic waste by anaerobic and aerobic digestion by composting • Growing use of landfills and accumulation of pollutants leads to contamination of soil and the groundwater, leading to various health issues • Non-recycled waste creates an acute land shortage and storage problems 6
  • 8. Waste management and recycling- Aim for zero waste communities:- ● The main focus of the municipal corporation should be to enforce strict waste segregation into organic, recyclable, non-recyclable and hazardous waste right at the household/shop level. Households/businesses that do not sort their waste will be fined, and their waste will not be collected ● This requires extensive community cooperation and their active participation. The corporation could formally involve with all registered housing welfare societies and other such local unions and associations; which can encourage its members and their families to segregate their waste on a daily basis. ● Rag-pickers and raddiwallahs to form cooperatives under the citizens’ forum to ensure their cooperation in collecting and sorting waste from an individual household ● State governments should establish plastic recycling plants across the state, which would cater to all the cities’ recycling needs. Waste collectors to focus on plastic collection. This is also be a possible source for the state government. ● A major part of household waste includes food-related and other organic waste. Composting and vermi-composting facilities should be set up in as many localities as possible., managed by the local communities. This generates high quality manure which can be used for agriculture. (Implemented successfully in Lahore, Pakistan by the Lahore Composting Facility). It cuts down on landfill costs; prevents the release of methane from landfills; and reduces groundwater and soil pollution. ● Implementing EPR (extended producer responsibility), where the producers of goods recycle and reuse their own waste 7
  • 9. Spreading public awareness:- ● Use of print media ● Use of TV, Radio, and the Internet ● Use of cinema halls before movies ● Street Plays, Puppet Shows etc. ● Posters, Pamphlets, Hoardings in public places ● School children to be taught waste sorting; and parents to be encouraged to follow waste sorting practices at home ● Primary School Curriculum to cover the subject of waste sorting to inculcate the habit early in children ● Recycling awareness clubs, activities etc. in schools and colleges; make system compulsory in residential college campuses ● Encourage public and community initiatives (like kuppathotti.com) which encourage practices of waste sorting and disposal The citizen’s forum, whose members know the local lifestyle and language, should be entrusted with the task of popularising waste segregation practices, enforce the rules and identify and penalise regular offenders. They should try to find out the prevalent situation of waste management in the area under observation and ascertain the perceptions of the people about the services provided. Citizens need to be convinced that no waste shall be thrown on the streets, drains, water bodies, open spaces, etc. and that they should form the habit of:- o Storage of wet food/bio-degradable waste and dry recyclable waste separately at source o Participation in primary collection of wastes o Handing over of recyclable waste materials to rag pickers/waste collectors o Use of community bins wherever directed/provided Community Awareness and Participation 8
  • 10. Public* Recyclable waste Municipal collectors Local compost facility (run by the community and the Citizens’ Forum) Farms outside the city as manure Rag-pickers (with cooperation of the Citizens’ Forum) Recycling plants Unsorted waste (remains uncollected) Non-recyclable waste Hazardous waste and e-waste Incineration Other safe, disposable items Landfill Recycled products Waste to be segregated. Unsorted waste not to be collected. *Households, shopkeepers, offices, hotels etc. A snapshot of the new system 9
  • 11. Conceptual and Implementation Risks ● Dealing with waste is dangerous. It poses hazards to employees and the residents near such facilities. They may face numerous health threats, rodent infestations and contact with hazardous chemicals from which infections may arise. ● Operating and maintaining recycling plants is cost intensive ● Not enough space to install composting plants in crowded Indian cities, like Mumbai ● Government hesitancy in funding plastic recycle plants ● The general public may continue to remain indifferent to the benefits of sorting and the risks of not doing so ● There are still some major risks from non-recycled waste dumping in landfills like groundwater contamination Mitigation of the above issues:- ● Safety equipment such as gloves. uniforms, bags etc. should be provided to all waste collection personnel ● Private sponsorship for recycling plants by companies which have a stake in waste production and management ● Heavy fines on people who don’t segregate waste on a regular basis 10
  • 12. References ● Ministry of Urban Development, Government of India; Manual on Solid Waste Management; http://moud.gov.in/swm_manual ● McKinsey Global Institute: India’s Urban Awakening; Building Inclusive Cities, Sustaining Economic Growth; April 2010 ● Wikipedia: www.wikipedia.com ● The Hindu: www.thehindu.com ● The New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/12/international/asia/12garbage.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0 ● Sustainable Solid Waste Management in India: http://swmindia.blogspot.in ● Ideas for Governance; www.ideasforgov.org ● Chennai Corporation website; www.chennaicorporation.gov.in ● Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JnNURM); http://jnnurm.nic.in ● IIHS Analysis on Census of India 2011 : http://www.iihs.co.in