NEW DELHI: India’s top 12 ports will be made cleaner and greener in a time-bound manner under ‘Project Green Ports,’ government today said.

“Weighing in the environmental perspective for sustained growth, the Ministry of Shipping has started ‘Project Green Ports’ which will help in making the major ports across India cleaner and greener,” Shipping Ministry said in a statement.

India has 12 major ports, Kandla, Mumbai, JNPT, Marmugao, New Mangalore, Cochin, Chennai, Ennore, V O Chidambarnar, Visakhapatnam, Paradip and Kolkata (including Haldia), which handle about 61 per cent of the country’s total cargo traffic.

“Project Green Ports will have two verticals, one is ‘Green Ports Initiatives’ related to environmental issues and second is ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan’,” the statement said.

The Green Port Initiatives include 12 initiatives, which will be implemented under strict time-bound fashion in order to achieve the targets, it said.

Some of these initiatives are preparation and monitoring plan, acquiring equipments required for monitoring environmental pollution, acquiring dust suppression system, setting up of sewage/waste water treatment plants/ garbage disposal plant and setting up projects for energy generation from renewable energy sources.

Besides it will include completion of shortfalls of Oil Spill Response (OSR) facilities (Tier-1), prohibition of disposal of almost all kind of garbage at sea, improving the quality of harbour wastes etc.

“Under Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan, the Ministry has identified 20 activities with certain timeline to promote cleanliness at the port premises,” the statement said.

Some of the activities are cleaning the wharf, cleaning and repairing of sheds, cleaning and repairing of port roads, painting road signs, zebra crossing, pavement edges, modernising and cleanliness of toilet complexes, placement of dustbins, beautification and cleaning of parks, boards indicating cleanliness messages, cleaning and repairing of all drainages and water systems and tree plantation.

“In order to achieve these objectives, regular training will be provided to the staff in order to generate awareness and inculcate a positive attitude towards keeping the environment clean and green. All the Major Ports have already initiated action on the above mentioned activities and are making good progress,” it said.

Cargo traffic handled at the 12 major ports rose by 3 per cent to 447.05 million tonnes (MT) between April and December this fiscal helped by pick up in demand.

This was against 433.5 MT cargo handled during the same period in 2014-15.