India generated 18,006 tonnes of COVID-19 biomedical waste in the last four months, with Maharashtra contributing the maximum (3,587 tonnes) to it, as per the data from Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).
COVID-19 biomedical waste could include PPE kits, masks, shoe covers, gloves, human tissues, items contaminated with blood, body fluids like dressings, plaster casts, cotton swabs, beddings contaminated with blood or body fluid, blood bags, needles, syringes etc.
Around 5,500 tonnes of COVID-19 waste was generated across the country in September – the maximum for a month so far, a PTI report quoting data said.
According to the data, Maharashtra generated 3,587 tonnes of COVID-19 waste in four months since June, followed by Tamil Nadu (1,737 tonnes), Gujarat (1,638 tonnes), Kerala (1,516 tonnes), Uttar Pradesh (1,432 tonnes), Delhi (1,400 tonnes), Karnataka (1,380 tonnes) and West Bengal (1,000 tonnes).
Around 5,490 tonnes of such waste was generated in September, with Gujarat contributing the maximum 622 tonnes, followed by Tamil Nadu (543 tonnes), Maharashtra (524 tnnes), Uttar Pradesh (507 tonnes) and Kerala (494 tonnes).
Delhi generated 382 tonnes of COVID-19 bio-medical waste in September, according to the CPCB data.
The CPCB had in March issued specific guidelines for handling, treatment and disposal of such waste at healthcare facilities, quarantine centres, homes, sample collection centers, laboratories, pollution control boards, urban local bodies and common biomedical waste treatment facilities (CBMWTFs).
The apex pollution body had in May developed the “COVID19 BWM” mobile application to monitor coronavirus-related biomedical waste and to compile the data through electronic manifest system.