Project - I
Waste into wealth

During the year of 2006 a problem was identified and was frequently reported by the people of kullanchavadi village of cuddalore district was improper disposal of coir pith by the coir processing industry. Where it is frequently blown by wind and when it is burnt, it emits smoke continuously thereby polluting the environment.

Due to its rich quantity of lignin, cellulose and tannin it resists natural degradation. Hence it was found to be a great menace for the residents of that village. A thorough study about the problem and the possible eco-friendly solutions were analyzed and accomplished.

     The research findings were addressed in an international conference and has been published as a book.

Project - II
Is Cuddalore turning into another Bhopal?

During the year of 2009 – 2013The two main water sources of Cuddalore District, Gadilam and Uppanar River, which are flowing through the industrial area has been taken into account for analyzing the water and sediment quality. The major problem faced by the people, who lives nearby these rivers of the SIPCOT industries were getting the foul smell and chemical contamination in the ground water sources.

     They were frequently suffered by the skin rashes, respiratory problems and other dreadful health diseases. Death rates due to cancer were reported to be higher in those areas. And the Medias such as The Hindu, Indian Express had also highlighted the emergency situation of these areas.

     The seasonal effects of industrial effluents on water and sediment quality were analyzed. The physico chemical characteristics and the heavy metal concentrations of the treated and untreated industrial effluents along with river water and sediment samples were tested. The results of the findings were addressed to the concern authorities. The problem and its solutions were also published in the international journals and conferences.

The List of articles published in international journals

Project – III
Is there a health risk for human beings on consuming the fishes of Uppanar River, Cuddalore?

During the year 2012 an investigation made to assess the concentrations of heavy metals inthe waters of the industrially polluted Uppanar Riverin relation to metal concentrations in the edible tissuesof four fish species (Oreochromis mossambicus, Netuma thalassina, Mugil cephalus, Lates calcarifer) from the river, and to estimate the transfer factor (TF)of heavy metals (Cu, Pb, Cd, Zn, Mn) from the waterto fish muscle tissues.

     The results were found to be within the maximum residual levels permitted by Indian standards and the WHO/FAO; thus, the fish from these areas are generally safe for human consumption. The results of the findings were published in an international journal.

Heavy metal bioaccumulation in edible fish species from an industrially polluted river and human health risk assessment

Archives of Polish Fisheries 21(1) March 2013

DOI: 10.2478/aopf-2013-0003

In the year 2017, the Indian express-news highlighted the dead fish floats on the Gadilam River. A petition was submitted to the TNPCB regarding this issue. The State Minister of industries reported that necessary action will be taken.

Project – IV
What are the risk factors for the sugarcane crop irrigated with treated effluents?

In the year 2014 the impact of irrigation with treated effluent from the sugar industry on the trace metal contamination of sugarcane juice was assessed. The aim of this investigation was to analyze the accumulation and translocation of trace metals in soil and in sugarcane crop irrigated with treated effluents from sugar industry compared to soil and sugarcane crop irrigated with bore-well water.

It revealed that the mean concentrations of Cd, Pb, Cu, Mnand Zn in the soil of fields irrigated with effluent and in juice from sugarcane grown on such fields were higher than those from bore-well water irrigated fields. The concentrations of trace metals in treated effluent exceeded the permissible limits of the Indian standards (Central Pollution Control Board-2000).

The concentrations of Cd, Pb, Cu, and Zn in the juice of sugarcane grown on fields irrigated with effluent also exceeded the permissible limits of Indian standards and WHO/FAO expert committee recommendations. The metal concentrations of sugarcane juice showed significant correlations with those of soil, which was not the case when bore well water was used for irrigation. The results of the findings were published in an international journal.

PL ISSN 2083-4772 DOI: 10.2478/aep-2014-0009

Project V
Using agricultural waste to improve the crop yield

     During the year 2016 – 2018 the potential of closed-loop biochar systems to increase crop yield and diversity was investigated in the farmer’s field in Panruti. Biocharprepared from three different feedstocks: maize cob (MC), coconut frond (CF), and coconut pith and shell (CPS) produced from local agricultural wastes in metal kilns was found to improve soil physical and chemical properties.

Biochar application does have a substantial potential for improving the agricultural yield and soil quality of the region. The concept is also helpful in lowering CO2 emissions to the atmosphere, thus contributing to the alleviation of global warming.

The biochar produced were applied to Onion, tomato and okra field. The comparative results were analyzed. Onion growth at 32 days was significantly increased by the addition of coconut pith and coir biochar. Biochar production could have a significant impact on farmers in Tamil Nadu, especially if local, small-scale systems of production using local agricultural waste are adopted.

Project VI
A step towards one lakh trees

     Our tree plantation process started in the year 2019and successfully we have achieved 15% of our target till date. Trees of our native species and good oxygen providers such as neem, amla, curry leaves, Alexandrian laurel (Punnai maram-tamil), Moringa and almond (badam-tamil) trees were planted along the road side and in residential areas in and around Neyveli& Panruti. Tree saplings were also gifted to neighbors to encourage them in tree plantation.