Monthly Archives: November 2014

‘Hold Fresh Study on Coal-fired Power Unit’

CHENNAI: The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has quashed the clearance given to the coal-fired power plant coming up in Cuddalore district, directing the private company to get clearance from the Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) after carrying out a fresh Cumulative Impact Assessment (CIA) Study.

Following a series of petitions, the matter reached the NGT where it suspended the Environmental Clearance (EC) on May 23, 2012. In its order, the tribunal directed the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) to review the EC granted to the project based on a CIA study and stipulate any additional environmental conditions if required.

Based on the directive, the MoEF issued a corrigendum on August 14, 2012.

Challenging this, the villagers filed a petition with the NGT, charging that the crucial CIA studies were carried out in just two weeks. This despite the CIA including the impact of all industries on the local environment in the 25 km radius of the plant. The company, claimed the petitioners, borrowed details from past studies, including that done by a company in the neighbourhood about 15 years ago.

Read full story here:

Green Nod in a Hurry to Cuddalore District Power Plant Gets Tribunal’s Red Light

CHENNAI: The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Monday quashed the clearance given to the 3,600 MW coal-fired power plant coming up in Cuddalore district, directing the private company to get the clearance from the Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) after carrying out a fresh Cumulative Impact Assessment (CIA) Study. The order was pronounced by the Principal Bench in New Delhi, chaired by Justice Swatanter Kumar, following petitions by three persons from villages in the district where the plant is coming up.

In a stinging rebuke of the haphazard manner in which the matter was handled by the EAC, the tribunal criticised the “casual approach” and said it “failed to apply its mind” on the material placed before it.

Read full story here:

Green Tribunal Quashes License for 3600MW IL&FS power plant in Cuddalore

Chennai, 10 November 2014: In a far-reaching order, the National Green Tribunal quashed the corrigendum environmental clearance given to IL&FS’s 3600 MW coal-fired power plant in Cuddalore district and made critical observations about the manner in which a Cumulative Environmental Impact Assessment (CEIA) for a power project should be carried out and the process which the Experts Appraisal Committee of the Ministry of Environment and Forests should consider such reports.

The order emphasized that the IL&FS will have to carry on a fresh Rapid CEIA study for which they should:

“a. Collect baseline/primary data of each and every existing industry as required under prevalent regulations and compare with National Standards as notified by the Government from time to time.

b. Collect data regarding treated effluents discharge/likely to be discharged by such industries.

c. Collect primary baseline data on socio-economic environment.

d. Collect data regarding industry in offing and which are likely to come in next five years as per PCPIR declaration as aforesaid in liaison with State PCB and/or the project proponents.

e. Carry out impact prediction/assessment using appropriate mathematical models.

f. Suggest appropriate management plan/s for significant impacts including financial implications.”

The order also set out that such study (CEIA) “should be placed before the EAC and the EAC shall consider such report and assess whether comprehensive CEIA study is necessary or not and advice the Respondent No. 3 accordingly and thereafter shall carry out the appraisal of the said study or the comprehensive CEIA Study as the case may be as per EC Regulations 2006 and may either recommend the grant of EC on certain specific conditions or decline to recommend the grant of EC by passing a speaking/reasoned order i.e. either recommend or refuse to recommend on reasons adduced therefor.”

The NGT has also come down heavily on the Expert Appraisal Committee of the MoEF for “not applying its mind” in granting the corrigendum Environment Clearance to the project based on the CEIA.

The appeal, seeking quashing of the Environmental Clearance granted to IL&FS on 14.08.2012, was filed by T. Murugandam, former president of Killai panchayat, and two members of the SIPCOT Area Community Environmental Monitors.

Advocates Ritwick Dutta and Rahul Choudhary appeared for the applicants. The public hearing for the IL&FS project was held on 5 February 2010 and the Environmental Clearance was granted on 30 May 2010.

Full text of the NGT Order can be downloaded from the following link:

Click to access 50-2012(PB-I)(APL)-10-11-2014.pdf

Chronology of the IL&FS Power Plant, Cuddalore

Date Event
05.02.2010 Public Hearing for 3600 MW TPP of IL&FS held in Cuddalore
31.05.2010 EC Granted by MoEF
October 2010 EC Challenged at NEAA, matter transferred to NGT
23 May 2012 EC Suspended by NGT pending a Cumulative Environmental Impact Assessment

Click to access 172011(T)_23May2012_final_order.pdf

14.08.2012 Corrigendum to original EC issued by MoEF
Aug/ September 2012 Petitioners (T Muruganandam and Othrs) challenge the corrigendum
July 2014 Final hearing for the case completed
10.11.2014 Final Order of NGT

Click to access 50-2012(PB-I)(APL)-10-11-2014.pdf

சாம்பல் நகரமாகும் முத்து நகரம்

ஒரு காலத்தில் தமிழகத்தின் முத்து நகரம் என்று கொண்டாடப்பட்ட தூத்துக்குடி இப்போது கொஞ்சம் கொஞ்சமாக சாம்பல் நகரம் ஆகிக்கொண்டிருக்கிறது. தொழில் வளர்ச்சியின் பெயரால், ஏற்கெனவே ரசாயன தொழிற்சாலைகள் நீராதாரத்தை நஞ்சாக்கிக்கொண்டிருக்கும் சூழலில், பெருகும் அனல் மின் நிலையங்களும், அபாயகரமான தொழிற்சாலைகளும் காற்றையும் நஞ்சாக்கிக்கொண்டிருக்கின்றன.

தென்னிந்தியாவின் முக்கிய தொழில் கேந்திரம்

துறைமுக நகரமான தூத்துக்குடி பல்வேறு வகையிலும் தொழிற்துறைக்கு வசதியான இடத்தில் அமைந்திருப்பதால், இங்கு பல்வேறு தொழிற்சாலைகளும் வேகமாக வளரத் தொடங்கின. இதனால், தென்னிந்தியாவின் முக்கியமான தொழில் கேந்திரங்களில் ஒன்றாக தூத்துக்குடி உருவெடுத்தது. ஆனால், மறுபுறம் நீரும் நிலமும் காற்றும் மாசுபடத் தொடங்கியது. இந்நிலையில், சமீப காலமாக தமிழகத்தில் மின்சார உற்பத்திக்காக நிறுவப்படும் அனல் மின் நிலையங்கள் பலவும் தூத்துக்குடியைச் சுற்றிலுமே அமைக்கப்படுவதால், சாம்பல் பரவும் நகரமாக மாறிக்கொண்டிருக்கிறது.

ஆண்டு இறுதியில் மின் உற்பத்தி இலக்கு 4000 மெகா வாட்

தூத்துக்குடி பகுதியின் மின் உற்பத்தி இந்த ஆண்டு இறுதிக்குள்ளாகவே சுமார் 4000 மெகா வாட் அளவை எட்டும் நிலையில் உள்ளது. தமிழ்நாடு மின் உற்பத்தி மற்றும் பகிர்மான கழகத்துக்குச் சொந்தமானது தூத்துக்குடி அனல் மின் நிலையம். 210 மெகா வாட் திறன் கொண்ட 5 அலகுகள் மூலம் இங்கு 1050 மெகாவாட் மின்சாரம் நீண்ட காலமாக உற்பத்திசெய்யப்படுகிறது.

Read full story here:

Accursed County


Upriver from Benares, ask Sonbhadra’s people about the price of development. It shows on their bodies.

Some 96 km south of Varanasi, the late autumn afternoon sun setting over the low-lying Vindhyas, opulent forests and the winding Son river defining Sonbhadra’s rich tapestry of landscape, nothing warns you about the long night that is Bagesati. Sonbhadra is the second largest district of Uttar Pradesh, a panhandle in its southeast, sharing a border with four other states—Madhya Pra­desh, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Bihar—and Bage­sati is, well, a village on all fours.

Eerie darkness looms overhead, below it’s a scene straight out of Zombieland. People amble by slowly, bent, stumbling, their gazes vacant, overcome intermittently by uncontrollable tre­mbling. Sandhya, 14, is sprawled on the floor of the courtyard outside her tenement, unmoving, lifeless, detached, just staring out with glassy eyes. “The abnormal one,” her parents tell everybody. “She was such a sprightly kid,” says her father Jagjivan. “But for the last six-seven years, she has been complaining of severe joint aches, numbness and muscle-twitching. Slowly she started withdrawing from everything.”

Morning dispels the darkness, only to reveal more despair. It’s a tiffin break at the ramshackle school building in the village. Children file out, their bodies contorted, some paralysed, teeth putrid and a few with obvious mental disorders. Their mothers, with crooked backs and bow-shaped legs, wait outside. Rakesh, 22, has convulsions from time to time. “I get tremors all over my body. My arm is slowly becoming immobile,” he says. Half his body started developing deformities eight years ago.

Read Full Story here: