Mumbai: Mumbai’s River March Group has come up with an innovative plan to clean four of the most polluted rivers that pass through the city— Poisar, Oshiwara, Mithi and Dahisar. So, what’s their big idea? The group is making an artificial floating island which will absorb pollution and impurities from the rivers. On an experimental basis, the floating island will be placed in Poisar river at Kandivali.
The artificial island will be made up of a thick plastic sheet that floats. The sheet will contain Canna indica, a wetland plant species, the roots of which will absorb pollutants and other suspended particles and purify it. Avinash Kubal, Deputy Director of Maharashtra Nature Park Society and coordinator of River March Group, did not sound very positive. He said that since all the rivers have so much pollutants in them, the artificial island is unlikely to make much of an impact.
“We cannot give a 100 per cent surety that the artificial island can remove impurities as these four rivers are 100 times more polluted than the safe limit. So, we have to first clear the river of all solid wastes and then put the floating islands,” he added. Kubal said the floating island will cover a stretch of two kilometres of Poisar and will take off after August.
Gopal Zaveri, also of River March Group said, “Ajoy Mehta, civic commissioner, has given a positive response to the floating island, but made it clear that no funds will be made available for it. At the same time he ensured that manpower will be provided from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation. Therefore, we are looking for Corporate Social Responsibility funds.”