In 2015, the Indian Railways introduced its plans to enhance cleanliness on-board and on stations, for which it constituted the ‘Atmosphere and Housekeeping Administration Directorate’, the wing to include these adjustments. 

Two years later, Fedrick Pariath, then deputy chief mechanical engineer (freight) of the Western Railways, Mumbai, was given the extra cost as deputy chief atmosphere and housekeeping supervisor. 

The 60-year-old remembers that on the time, he had solely dealt with core mechanical engineering roles over his two-decade profession. Not one to shrink back from this new duty, he took this new activity as a possibility to provoke change. 

“I made a decision to work my method round it. There was rather a lot for me to do, on condition that this was the primary environment-related initiative by the railways,” he tells The Higher India.  

In 2019, he moved to the Ahmedabad division of Western Railways. Within the years since, underneath his management the division has seen monumental progress in lots of departments. 

A number of stations — particularly the eight NGT-nominated stations of Ahmedabad, Gandhidham, Bhuj, Maninagar, Viramgam, Palanpur, Mahesana, and Samakhiali within the Ahmedabad division — as we speak have an environment friendly waste administration system, water recycling system, photo voltaic panels and so forth.

A difficult duty

Fedrick says that when he began working with the atmosphere and housekeeping administration within the Mumbai headquarters in 2017, his work was largely on the planning stage. 

“I began by roping in blue chip corporations by convincing them to begin CSR actions in railways. A lot of the corporations have big funds for CSR actions,  however they usually don’t know how one can put them to make use of,” he explains.

He continues, “I pitched them the concept to put in plastic bottle-crushing machines that might help simple plastic administration at stations. Thus, over 20 such machines have been put in throughout a number of stations of the Western Railways.” 

Plastic bottle crushing machine installed at Gandhidham railway station.
Plastic bottle crushing machine put in at Gandhidham railway station.

Two years later, he moved to the Ahmedabad division as a senior divisional atmosphere and housekeeping supervisor. “I took the chance and moved to the Ahmedabad division and continued my work from there,” Fedrick says. 

“The Ahmedabad division is among the many high performing divisions within the Indian Railways by way of loading, passenger transportation, and many others. However it was lagging behind when it got here to sustainable environmental administration. I made a decision to implement plans for waste administration, air pollution management to deliver it to a stage the place it shines in all facets,” he says. 

Combating plastic air pollution

After the bottle-crushing machines, Fedrick’s subsequent focus was to cope with plastic waste. For this he collaborated with EcoHike, a Trichy-based organisation that makes apparels out of PET bottles. 

“They recycled the pet bottles to make t-shirts, bed-sheets, pillow covers, napkins, headrests and so forth. Although the merchandise manufactured weren’t sufficient to be equipped throughout the division, my solely intention was to point out that there are a number of methods during which we are able to deal with the plastic menace,” says Fedrick, who additionally roped in Bisleri, which agreed to supply a sitting bench product of recycled plastics for each 50 kg of multi-layered plastic (MLP) offered by the railways.

Products made from recycled PET bottles on display at the Ahmedabad railway station.
Merchandise produced from recycled PET bottles are on show on the Ahmedabad station.

Presently, the merchandise produced from recycled PET bottles and the benches made by Bisleri are on show on the Ahmedabad and Gandhidham stations in Gujarat. “I needed individuals to see these merchandise and surprise about the opportunity of recycling them. I imagine that it’s going to affect them in a great way to be extra chargeable for their actions,” he says.

An environment friendly waste administration system

Fedrick additionally focussed on waste segregation and put in separate color bins for moist, dry and plastic waste within the main stations. 

“Moreover, we put in ApNova waste bins. These are high-quality, heavy bins which are notably immune to weathering and theft, making them excellent for public locations like railway stations. They have been additionally put in via CSR actions,” he explains.

So as to handle moist waste on the stations, he took the initiative to place up two compost machines — one in every of 500 kg capability and the opposite of 250 kg — at Ahmedabad station. “We now have been capable of generate round 6 to 7 tonnes of compost out of it. We additionally acquired a NABL certificates qualifying the compost to be of actually good high quality and appropriate for on-line sale. However we determined to make use of it for in-house functions like gardening.”

ApNova bin (left), compost machine (middle) and e-vehicle for transporting garbage at Ahmedabad railway station.
ApNova bin (left), compost machine (center) and e-vehicle for transporting rubbish at Ahmedabad railway station.

Two stable waste administration vegetation have been additionally arrange in main stations like Ahmedabad and Gandhidham, based mostly on the zero-waste idea. “All the rubbish we gather is transported to the stable waste vegetation. For this, we used e-vehicles that utterly run on solar energy,” he elaborates.

He provides, “We get a whole lot of silver foils within the rubbish that we segregate, clear, and dry. With the assistance of an organization named Jap Cargo in Dahej, we turned the silver foils, tetra packs, and plastics into polyol sheaths. These sheaths are waterproof and can be utilized for building functions, and are pure warmth absorbers that cut back the temperature by 4 levels Celsius,” explains Fedrick, including that glasses have been crushed and became candle stands. 

Powering via photo voltaic power

As a result of a whole lot of water is required to clean the coaches and platforms, there’s huge wastage, Fedrick says. 

“We recycled water used for laundry in a phytoremediation mannequin sewage therapy plant (STP) put in at completely different areas throughout the Ahmedabad division. This generates round 860 Kld (kilo litres per day) recycled water, which is principally used for gardening, coach washing,” explains Fedrick. 

Furthermore, the officer additionally arrange a Miyawaki forest on the premises of Ahmedabad Railway Station.

“In 2020 October, we planted round 2,400 timber in 42 completely different varieties on an 800 sq-m space. At the moment, the common top of timber is 15-20 ft,” he says, including that they’ve been conducting plantation drives as effectively.

The patch of Miyawaki forest on the premises of Ahmedabad Railway Station.
The patch of Miyawaki forest on the premises of Ahmedabad Railway Station.

Fedrick additionally had solar energy panels put in with a capability of 313.8 kWp. “We generated round 4,20,274 kW models at Ahmedabad station, which involves round 21 per cent of the overall electrical energy consumption of the station,” he says, including that in stations like Ahmedabad, Sabarmati, and Vatva, there are programs in place for photo voltaic harvesting as effectively.

Measuring the affect

Beneath Fedrick’s initiative, the Ahmedabad station has now began monitoring Air High quality Index and noise air pollution ranges on a real-time foundation with shows on the platforms. 

“To my data, it’s the solely railway station in which there’s an air high quality monitoring system. Moreover, Ahmedabad station has been awarded a ‘platinum inexperienced’ ranking by the Indian Inexperienced Constructing Council. It has additionally been granted the ISO-14001 certification for the Environmental Administration System (EMS),” he provides.

Parimal Shinde, former ADRM Ahmedabad Division and present CWM at Mumbai Central Railways, who labored with Fedrick for 3 years, says, “He has at all times been an brisk individual and extremely self-motivated. It was his initiatives that introduced in a whole lot of constructive adjustments in regard to environmental administration within the division. His initiatives have now set a path for the remainder of the railway divisions throughout India to be taught and comply with.”

Fedrick received several awards and accolades for his initiatives.
Fedrick acquired a number of awards and accolades for efficient initiatives.

In line with Fedrick, “Nearly all divisions throughout the nation at the moment are following the solid-waste administration system that we had arrange. The paperwork I had created for the scope of labor have been handed on to each division.”

He says, “I really feel that folks have turn out to be extra conscious, particularly in regard to littering or plastic air pollution. Ever since we put in the dustbins, and displayed merchandise made out of recycled plastic, we’ve noticed a change in behaviour among the many passengers. The railway employees are additionally extra acutely aware about water wastage.”

Just lately retired from his service, Fedrick now works as a advisor for environment-related initiatives. 

You’ll be able to contact Fedrick Pariath at +919909844050 or freddypariath@gmail.com

Edited by Divya Sethu



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