BY MICHAEL FISHER | NT
In an attempt to check the air and water pollution and waste management in the hotel industry, the Goa State Pollution Control Board has decided to subject the hotels to pollution control standards by charging them a pollution NOC fee.
Some hundreds of medium sized and above category hotels with more than 25 rooms have been asked by the GSPCB to pay one per cent of the total value of their property as pollution NOC fee. Ten-room hotels having no restaurants and those falling under the D-category have been exempted from this fee.
The GSPCB has asked the tourism department to notify owners of all categories of hotels with more than ten rooms and those having restaurants to comply with the rules under the Air and Water Act and obtain the Consent to Operate permission from the GSPCB. Owners of the hotels are being accordingly notified, said tourism department sources.
With the number of hotels coming up increasing by the day, there is a need to check air and water pollution, feel tourism sources. Many hotels do not follow the rules and do not have sewage treatment plants installed while in some other hotels these sewage treatment plants do not operate as per the norms. Hotels with more than 25 rooms need to install sewage treatment plant. The hotels need to abide by the necessary pollution control measures which include effluent treatment system, air pollution control measures and solid waste management systems to achieve the standards prescribed by GSPCB, said a tourism source.
Proprietors of the hotels are, however, irked by the GSPCB decision. One of the medium-sized hotel owners told this paper that the one per cent fee on the total value of the property is a bit too much and GSPCB should take a cue from other states by charging a one-time yearly fee.
The GSPCB chairman, Mr Simon D’Souza told ‘The Navhind Times’ that hotels come under industries and generate waste water, sewage, solid waste, hazardous waste oil from generators and release air-emissions and hence will need the pollution board’s Consent to Operate permission. “If all documents of a hotel are in place, the permission is issued within a month and renewed periodically,” said Mr D’Souza. It may be noted that hotels having up to 25 rooms were exempted by the government from renewal, registration and licence fees in the last two years as they were going through a recession phase.