SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT, THE HINDU
CHENNAI, April 5, 2014
Members of the Madras Naturalists’ Society (MNS) and the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) on Friday appealed to the government to relocate the proposed 4,000-MW power plant and a captive port to an alternative location from Cheyyur in Kancheepuram district.
Ravi Chellam, vice-president, BNHS, said the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests’ Expert Appraisal Committee claimed that “migratory birds are found to be negligible’’ in the lagoon area. However, a joint study by the MNS and BNHS revealed that the lagoon had a rich birdlife.
Chennai, April 4
Times of India. Page 5
TIMES NEWS NETWORK
Chennai: The Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) and the Madras Naturalists’ Society (MNS) have released a study that contests the claims of an environment ministry report that cleared the proposed 4,000MW power plant at Cheyyur off East Coast Road near Chennai.
While giving clearance to the project in September 2013, the ministry said the presence of migratory birds was negligible in the area and there were no reserved forests, mangroves or estuaries.
The latest study by independent experts said that the area has more than 36 migratory bird species, eight of them endangered. Besides, it is a feedingcum-breeding ground for fish and has an estuary, it said.
The report has raised concerns of acidic emissions and air pollution from the power plant, and advised the ministry to shift the location of the power plant to another area.
Ravi Chellam of the Bombay Natural History Society, part of the study team, said, “We are not against the power plant. But it should not be given environmental clearance based on incorrect data and claims” .
4 April, 2014 — The 4000 MW Cheyyur coal power project has high potential to irreversibly damage the Odiyur Lagoon, destabilise fisheries and increase the vulnerability of the area to flooding events, according to a scientific study titled “Evaluation of the Waterbirds of Odiyur Lagoon – a Wetland near the proposed Cheyyur Power Plant” by the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) and the Madras Naturalists’ Society (MNS). Releasing the report at a Press Conference today, Dr. Ravi Chellam, Vice President and Member of the Governing Council of the Bombay Natural History Society, said the study makes a strong case for relocating the power plant and captive port to an alternative location that is in compliance with the siting guidelines issued by the Union Ministry of Environment & Forests. He urged the State and Central Governments to notify the Lagoon and its catchment as an Ecologically Sensitive Area under the Environment Protection Act and regulate activities to ensure the protection of local biodiversity, local livelihoods and the region’s hydrological functions. Continue reading
SIDDHARTHA P SAIKIA
Bidding for the ultra mega power projects (UMPP) at Bhedabahal in Odisha and Cheyyur in Tamil Nadu, of 4,000 MW each, will be deferred by at least two months. This means the winning bids for the projects, which require investments of over ₹25,000 crore each, will be declared by the new Government, expected to take charge by May.
“The bidders have sought more time to submit RFPs (request for proposal or price bid). The companies sought extension of the date by three months. However, the Government will extend it by another 8-10 weeks. The order is expected in a day or two,” a senior Power Ministry official told Business Line.
According to the official, the bidders want more time Continue reading
Despite India’s perceived abundance in coal reserves, usable coal will not last beyond 15 years, going by the rate at which it is being consumed in the country, warned former Union power secretary E A S Sarma here on Saturday.
Speaking on the sidelines of a convention on the “Real Face of coal”, former Union Power Secretary E A S Sarma said that rational energy planning should shift the focus from creating new megawatts to saving megawatts in transmission and distribution. “Supply-oriented planning in energy, especially electricity, has outlived its time. Sooner we face this hard reality, the better it will be from the point of view of sustainability,” he said.
The Coal Mine Planning & Design Institute………..Read more: http://www.newindianexpress.com/cities/chennai/Usable-Coal-to-be-Over-in-15-yrs/2014/02/23/article2072545.ece#.Uw8gWvmSwRE
A public interest litigation petition has been filed in the Madras High Court seeking to declare that the proceedings for identification of land and land acquisition for the 4000 MW Ultra Mega Power Project and the captive port at Cheyyur in Kancheepuram district as illegal.
The petitioner, K.Saravanan of Ururkuppam, Besantnagar here, a fisherman, said the Tamil Nadu Government was currently acquiring lands for the power project and the captive port at Cheyyur.
The lands which were being acquired were not the ones that were selected for the project.
In the case of the captive port, land acquisition was being done at a site that was expressly rejected in favour of a different location that was found more suitable. As regards the power plant, lands in a survey numbers that were not even part of the site stated to be required were being acquired. Read more: http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/tp-tamilnadu/plea-to-declare-land-acquisition-for-power-project-as-illegal/article5701116.ece
CHENNAI: Citing “crippling irregularities” and “fraudulent methods” adopted for acquiring lands for a 4,000MW coal-fired ultra-mega thermal power plant at Cheyyur near Chennai, a PIL filed in the Madras high court has sought a stay on acquisition of land in seven villages on East Coast Road.
The first bench comprising acting Chief Justice Satish K Agnihotri and Justice K K Sasidharan on Monday issued notices to state and central governments, besides the Tamil Nadu Maritime Board and the Central Electricity Authority.
According to the PIL, the Kancheepuram district administration has been acquiring lands in Cheyyur, Vedal, Chittarkadu, Gangadevankuppam, Vilangadu, Kokkaranthangal and Panaiyur villages for the power plant and a captive port, though most of these lands lay outside the project area. The Coastal Tamil Nadu Power Limited, a subsidiary of the Power Finance Corporation, is the promoter of the plant.
While the coal-fired thermal plant and ash dyke are to come up in Cheyyur, a captive port to receive the imported coal for the power plant is to be set up in Panaiyur, the PIL said, adding, “The identification of the sites is fraught with illegalities.”
The PIL, filed by a fishing community member, K Saravanan, said these lands were not the ones originally identified for the project, and that at present land acquisition was being carried out at a site that was rejected in favour of a different location.
No committee either visited the spot for identification of the two sites, or submitted a feasibility report, he said, adding, “The clearance for the captive port as well as the power plant is under challenge before the National Green Tribunal (southern bench)”.
Noting that he was not against the power project in Tamil Nadu, Saravanan said coal-fired thermal power plants are ‘red’ category industries because of their inherently polluting nature.
Also, the captive port for the project is now proposed to be located in a site rejected by the site selection teams of the state government. Instead of Panaiyur, the team had selected Tharuthazhalaiyur to locate the port, he said.
The area between the villages which is being acquired for the captive port is covered with sand dunes and is eco-sensitive, the PIL said, adding, “This beachfront is used perennially for a range of fishing-related activities. Locating a port and a 3-lakh tonne coal storage yard at this location would harm the health of local communities, disrupt livelihoods and disturb the coastal ecology.”