20 Power Plants Asked to Comply With Environment Standards

New Delhi
20 Power Plants Asked to Comply With Environment Standards

The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has not conducted any specific assessment of pollution caused by thermal power plants around their sites, but has so far asked 20 of them to comply with environment standards, Lok Sabha was informed today.

Replying to a question in Lok Sabha, Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said CPCB issued directions to the power plants on the basis of the findings of inspections carried out by its Environmental Surveillance Squad (ESS).

"Directions under Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 have been issued to 14 power plants, while under Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution Act), 1981 and Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974, concerned State Pollution Control Boards were asked to direct six power plants to comply with the environmental standards," Javadekar said.

The power plants which have been issued directions include Paras and Koradi thermal power stations in Maharashtra; Patratu, Tenughat, Chandragupta power plants in Jharkhand; Kutch Lignite in Gujarat; Durgapur and Kolaghat in West Bengal; Rayalseema power plant in Andhra Pradesh, and Chhabra thermal power station in Baran district of Rajasthan.

The thermal power plants also include the ones at Korba (East), Korba (NTPC), Korba (West), Amarkantak (Lanco Power) in Chhattisgarh; Talcher (NTPC) in Odisha, Parichha, Anpara and Obra power stations in Uttar Pradesh, as well as, Muzaffarpur and Kahalgaon Super Thermal (NTPC) power plants in Bihar.

Javadekar said the directions were in different phases of compliance. He also informed the Lower House about steps taken by the Central government to contain pollution from the power sector.

Among them is stricter emission limit for particulate matter at 50 mg per Nm3 (Normal Cubic Metre) against the notified limit of 150 mg/ Nm3 for new power plants to be located in critically polluted area, urban area and ecologically sensitive area.

"Installation of Flue Gas Desulphurisation (FGD) system for control of Sulphur dioxide (SO2) emissions is also being imposed on case-to-case basis. Five thermal power plants - Dahanu (Reliance Power), Trombay (Tata Power), Ratnagiri (JSW), Bongaigaon and Vindhyachal (NTPC), and Udupi (Lanco Power) have been asked to provide FGD," Javadekar said.

The government has also made it mandatory to use flyash to achieve its 100 per cent utilisation within five years from November 3, 2009 by the existing thermal power plants and within four years from the date of commissioning of new plants. The existing plants have been asked to conserve water by adopting recycling of ash pond effluents.

Javadekar said power plants using fresh water have to install cooling towers (with higher cycle of concentration) in place of 'once through cooling system'. Cleaner power generation technologies like 'Circulating Fluidised Bed Combustion' is being implemented.

Similarly, use of beneficiated coal in thermal power plants located 1,000 km from coal mine area has been made mandatory. Plants located within 500 to 750 km and 750 to 1,000 km shall commence use of beneficiated coal with effect from January 2016 and 2015, respectively.

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