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Concentration of Polluted River Stretches: CPCB

The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) in 2018 identified 351 polluted river stretches in India.:

The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) in 2018 identified 351 polluted river stretches in India.

  • CPCB study reveals that discharge of untreated wastewater is one of the main causes of river pollution.
  • The assessment of water quality for identification of polluted river stretches found that 31 states and Union territories (UT) had rivers and streams that did not meet the water quality criteria.\

Findings of CPCB:

  • Concentration of Polluted River Stretches: Almost 60% of polluted river stretches exist in eight states: Maharashtra, Assam, Madhya Pradesh, Kerala, Gujarat, Odisha, West Bengal and Karnataka.
  • Maharashtra has the maximum number of polluted river stretches in the country.
  • Disproportionate Sewage Treatment: The National Green Tribunal (NGT) in 2019 directed that 100% treatment of sewage needed to be ensured before 31st March, 2020.
  • However, these states have sewage treatment capacity disproportionate to the sewage generated.
  • According to the CPCB report National inventory of sewage treatment plants 2021, about 72,368 million litres per day (MLD) of sewage was generated against which operational treatment capacity was only 26,869 MLD in 2021.
  • Increasing Biological Oxygen Demand: This huge amount of sewage is left untreated/partially treated and discharged directly into rivers and pollutes rivers by increasing the biological oxygen demand.

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