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The indiscriminate use of natural resources

The indiscriminate use of natural resources, rapid industrialization and urbanization are the main reasons for rapid deterioration of environment. Almost all human activities generate waste, which is an unavoidable component of our daily life. In fact there is a need for awareness about adopting efficient, scientific and safe method of treatment and disposal of water including conversion of waste into energy.
Distillery industry is one of the major Agro-based industries in India that play a major role in pollution of Environment. Distilleries are one of the 17 most polluting industries listed by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) of India. There are about 295 distilleries in India with an installed capacity of 3198 million liters (L) of alcohol production per annum. About 15 L of waste water is produced per L of alcohol production. This means that for a 30,000 liters/day (LPD) distillery about 4.5 lakh liters of waste water is produced daily. Some distilleries even produce about 6-7 lakh liters of waste water. Distilleries in Karnataka produce rectified spirit using molasses as a raw material, that is, a byproduct of sugar mills. In Karnataka there are 39 distilleries which generate 282.5 million liters of rectified spirit and 3692.5 million liter of effluent. The spent wash or distillery effluent is acidic, dark brown coloured liquid with unpleasant odour. It has high BOD, COD in addition to being rich in plant nutrient elements. It does not contain any toxic substances. The high BOD, COD and other organic compounds in distillery effluent are likely to deteriorate soil and environmental health (Sindu et al., 2007 ) .