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Government issues draft policy to make small buildings eco-friendly

With a majority of buildings coming up being small in size, the government has come out with a draft notification to make eco-compliance mandatory for such projects.


Government issues draft policy to make small buildings eco-friendly

New Delhi: With a majority of buildings coming up being small in size, the government has come out with a draft notification to make eco-compliance mandatory for such projects.

The smaller projects, with a built-up area of over 5,000 square metres to 20,000 square metres, will have to comply with environmental conditions like installation of natural drainage, water conservation, rainwater harvesting and solid waste management, among others, according to the draft issued by the Environment Ministry.

The environmental conditions will be integrated with the 'building permission' -- except for hospitals -- being granted by local authorities, it said.

The draft policy seeks to amend the Environment Impact Assessment notification, 2006. The ministry has sought public comments within 60 days.

"The current environmental regime covers buildings and constructions of only above 20,000 square metres of built-up area whereas a majority of the buildings being constructed are of smaller size and it is important to integrate environmental concerns, considerations and best practices into construction and operation of building and construction sector projects of smaller sizes as well," the draft notification stated.

The Environment Ministry has proposed that local by-laws and the revised National Building Code should incorporate these environment conditions so that even smaller-sized buildings are eco-compliant.

As per the proposed amendments, smaller projects will have to maintain proper natural drainage system with adequate size of channel for ensuring unrestricted flow of water.

The smaller buildings should have water conservation, rain water harvesting and groundwater recharge system. They should also have the unpaved area of more than or equal to 20 percent of the recreational open spaces.

That apart, the ministry has specified the projects that need to follow a solid waste management under which buildings should have separate wet and dry bins at the ground level for facilitating segregation of waste.

In common area, lighting must be of LED or solar lights should be provided. There should also be dust, smoke and debris prevention measures such as screens and installation of barricades at the site during construction.

The smaller projects should have green cover. A minimum of one tree for every 80 square metres of land should be planted and maintained. The existing trees will be counted for this purpose. Preference should be given to planting native species, the notification added.

The notification made it clear that the states adopting these objective and monitorable environmental conditions in their building by-laws and relevant laws and incorporating these conditions in the approvals given for building construction making it legally enforceable shall not require a separate environmental clearance for individual buildings."

From Zee News

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