In Barguna’s Amtali upazila, the owners of eight drum chimney brick kilns are preparing to use wood as fuel for burning bricks. These brickfields have been constructed on local and crop lands in violation of the law. It is feared that burning of bricks with wood in these brick kilns will cause environmental pollution as well as damage to various crops including paddy.
According to the locals, these brickfields have been built without any permission. Different species of wood have been collected for burning bricks and stored in brick kilns. If timber is started burning at low tide, the agricultural land around the tide will be damaged. In this regard, Deputy Commissioner Habibur Rahman told Prothom Alo that action will be taken against them if they use any brick kiln wood.
According to the brick kiln workers, according to the rules, bricks are to be burnt with coal, but preparations are being made to burn bricks with wood. Each kiln will burn 350 to 400 tons of firewood daily. Preparations have been made to burn bricks with wood in eight drum chimney brickfields in Amtali.
According to the brick kiln owners’ association, there are 29 brickfields in the upazila. Of these, 21 are zigzags and 6 are drum chimney bricks. Chimney brickfields include Allar Dan Bricks, MMB Bricks, Five Star Bricks, HRT Bricks, RNKF Bricks, MCK Bricks, Southern Bricks and Mridha Bricks.
Recently, a pile of wood was seen on the ground in the drum chimney brick field named MMB Bricks in Raibala village of Kukui union of Amtali upazila. These timbers have been collected from social forests for brick burning. Saw mills have been set up to make wood suitable for fuel.
Visiting the Five Star brick kiln in the same village, it is seen that thousands of manas of wood are piled up in the kiln as fuel for burning bricks. A sawmill has been set up to cut wood. A pile of wood has been seen in the Brix brick kiln, a gift from God.
Md. Lives at a distance of 100 feet from MMB Bricks brick field in Raibala village. Mamun. He said, “The smoke from this brick kiln does not bear fruit on any of the trees in and around our house. The night smoke falls down like fog. ‘
On condition of anonymity, a woman living near MMB Brickwater said that their houses, plants and crop lands are being destroyed. They are suffering from shortness of breath due to smoke.
MMB brickyard owner Anwar Mridha told Prothom Alo, “We have spent a lot of money this year. We have brought wood to the brick kiln for burning bricks. ‘
Sohrab Uddin, the caretaker of Barguna General Hospital, said that the smoke from burning bricks causes various health problems including shortness of breath, asthma and watery eyes. He said in the first light, it would be better if these brickfields are set up in a deserted area. If brick kilns are set up in densely populated areas, there is a risk to public health.
Abdul Halim, Barisal divisional director of the environment department, said there were several illegal brickfields in Amtali upazila. He said that a crackdown on illegal brick kilns would be launched soon. In addition, if wood is used for burning bricks in a brick kiln, then action will be taken against the kiln owner.
Amtali Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) KM Abdullah bin Rashid said burning wood as fuel for burning bricks is a punishable offense. If firewood is used in brick burning, legal action will be taken against the brick kiln owners.