Skip to main content

Tata Mundra power plant in Kutch, Gujarat, "fails" to get environmental clearance for the next phase

By Our Representative
In what is being seen by environmentalists and activists as an important success, the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF), Government of India, has refused to give environmental clearance to the Tata Mundra Ultra Power Project (UMPP). Revealing this, Bharat Patel of the Machimaar Adhikaar Sangharsh Samiti (MASS), which is pitted against the UMPP at Mundra, has said in a statement that the MoEF decision has been reached "citing non-compliance of environmental conditions during the first phase." 
Hence, MASS' statement said, "The Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) of the MoEF declined environmental clearance for the expansion plans for the UMPP." The MoEF decision is particularly surprising because Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been insisting on early environmental clearance to major projects which he considers of "national importance." Tatas are known to have gone close to Modi after they were provided with huge subsidies worth Rs 30,000 crore to shift their Nano car plant to Gujarat from West Bengal.
Referring to a meeting held on July 31-August 1, the minutes of which are available on the MoEF website, MASS quotes the EAC to say, “The environmental clearance (EC) of existing UMPP show that some of the conditions like mangrove plantation, green belt etc. are either non-complied or partly complied.” 
Hence, the EAC is said to have recommended “for a site-visit by a sub-committee for the issues regarding mangrove plantation, and for a detailed action plan for compliance to the conditions stipulated in the EC for the first phase, along with budgetary provisions for public hearing and such other engagements."
The Tatas' UMPP had planned to expand the existing 4,000 MW project by 1,660 MW and had sought environmental clearance. Earlier, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a co-investor in the $4 billion in the project, denied that it was considering to finance Tatas' expansion plans.
The MASS claimed, "The latest report of the EAC reconfirms what MASS, the local organisation of fishworkers affected by the power projects in Mundra, had been raising the past few years. Last year, investigating on a complaint filed by the MASS, the Compliance Advisor Ombudsman (CAO), the recourse mechanism of IFC, had found a number of policy violations by the company. The World Bank President, who is required to take actions on the findings of CAO, has not taken any yet."
"Last month, at the annual general meeting of the UMPP, investors raised serious questions about social and environmental issues of the Tatas' Mundra project. The directors of the company had promised prompt action. However, no action has so far been reported", MASS said.

Comments

TRENDING

Lip-service on World Environment Day vs 'watered-down' eco-safeguards

By Shankar Sharma*  Just a few days ago, the world remembered the routinely forgotten global environment on the occasion of World Environment Day, briefly though, maybe just for the day. There were reports of a few high profile ceremonies in different parts of the country, including a few in New Delhi. Prime Minister Narendra Modi reportedly asked the people of our country to plant one tree per each person as a mark of respect/ gratitude for our mothers.

'Attack on free expression': ABVP 'insults' Udaipur professor for FB post

Counterview Desk   People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), Rajasthan, condemning what it called "insult of Professor Himanshu Pandya" by students affiliated with with the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarti Parishad (ABVP) in Udaipur, has said he was evicted from the class where he was teaching after raising "ugly slogans", forcing him to "leave the university".

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

Pellet gun fire severely injures Dalit worker off Bangladesh border

By Kirity Roy*  This is regarding an incident of firing pellets by the Border Security Force (BSF) personnel attached with Panchadoji Border Outpost of ‘E’ Company of 90 BSF Battalion on a Schedule Caste youth of village Parmananda under Dinhata Police Station of Cooch Behar district of West Bengal. The victim was severely injured and one portion of his face became disfigured due to pellet firing by the BSF.

Moving towards sustainable development? Social, environmental implications of HCES data

By Dr Vandana Sehgal, Dr Amandeep Kaur*  Sustainable development, the high time agenda, encompasses economic, social, and environmental dimensions, aiming for a balance between all these aspects to ensure long-term well-being and prosperity for all. One of the crucial aspects of sustainable development is consumption patterns. Consumption patterns refer to the way individuals, households, and societies use resources and goods. Sustainable consumption patterns entail using resources efficiently, minimizing waste, and considering the environmental and social impacts of consumption choices.

Heatwave in Bundelkhand: 'Inadequate attention' on impact on birds, animals

By Bharat Dogra, Reena Yadav*  While the heat wave and its many-sided adverse impacts have been widely discussed in recent times, one important aspect of heat waves has not received adequate attention and this relates to the impact on birds and animals.

High on aesthetics, this 'pro-Naxal' Punjabi poet shunned sloganeering

By Harsh Thakor*  Surjit Patar, one of Punjab’s top progressive poets, whose life journey symbolised crusade against oppression, died of cardiac arrest at his residence on Barewal Road in Ludhiana, on 11 May 2024, at the age of 79. In Barnala, on June 9th, a gathering of around 10,000 persons for all walks of life was staged in his memory, by the Gursharan Singh Lok Kala Salam Kafla. An award was presented to members of Patar’s family.