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Consideration of Projects of Thermal Power, Steel Sector, etc. for Environmental Clearance with sourcing of Coal from dedicated Coal Blocks/Coal India Ltd
Government of India
Ministry of Environment & Forests
CGO Complex, Lodi Road,
Dated: l g t h April, 2012
Subject : Consideration of Projects of Thermal Power, Steel Sector, etc.
for Environmental Clearance with sourcing of Coal from
dedicated Coal Blocks / Coal India Ltd. - Regarding
This is in continuation to this Ministry's earlier circular of even number dated
1% November, 2010 on the above mentioned subject regarding proposals relating to
thermal power and other projects, which are largely dependent on availability of coal
as a raw material. I t was stipulated that such projects shall be considered only a t e r
firm coal linkage is available. Further, it was also required that the status of
environment and forestry clearance of the coal source, i.e. the linked coal mine /
coal block will be intimated for consideration of such proposals. I n case of projects
based on imported coal, a copy of the firm MOU signed between the coal supplier
and the project proponent would be required.
2. The issue of firm coal linkage as a pre-requisite for consideration of projects
for environment clearance has been further considered in order to bring in greater
clarity and to elaborate the procedure for submission and processing of proposals for
3. It is essential to have detailed information regarding quality of coal to assess
the environmental impacts of a thermal power project. The various important
parameters of coal quality, inter alia, include (i) calorific value; (ii) sulphur content
and (iii) ash content. The calorific value of coal would determine the quantity of coal
requirement per unit of power generation, ash content would determine the land
requirement for the ash pond as also the water consumption for its disposal in slurry
mode and sulphur content would impact on the SO? emissions which, in turn, would
affect the air quality.
4. Accordingly, quality of coal to be used in the project is taken into
consideration while preparing the environment impact assessment (EIA) report and
carrying out the environmental appraisal.
5. I t is, therefore, essential to provide firm coal linkage for consideration of
proposals for environment clearance of thermal power projects and other projects
which are largely dependent on coal as a raw material. I t is clarified that the coal
linkage could either be in the form of a linkage through a specific mine or a basket
of mines or through dedicated coal block, in the form of linkage accorded by
Standing Linkage Committee of the Ministry of Coal or a fuel supply agreement. The linkage/FSA must provide the details of the coal quality parameters, specifically (i)
calorific value; (ii) sulphur content and (iii) ash content and such other parameters
as may be prescribed by MoEF from time to time. Further, it would be necessary to
indicate the location of mine as this would determine the necessity of using
beneficiated washed coal.
6. In the eventuality of change in coal parameters with respect to the
parameters based on which EIA was prepared, it would be necessary that the
project is referred back to MoEF to revisit the environment clearance granted earlier
so as to assess the adequacy of the conditions already stipulated and to incorporate
any additional condition as may be necessary in the interest of environment
protection including provision of FGD for control of SOx emissions.
7. As regards the issue relating to the status of EC/FC for the linked coal mine, it
is clarified that the case for environment clearance of Thermal Power Projects would
be processed based on the status furnished by the proponent in line with the parallel
processing being adopted for granting environment clearances of projects where
forestry clearance is also required, i.e, having convergence at the last step.
However, EC would be issued only after stage-I forestry clearance for linked mine
has been issued.
8. The above procedure comes into force with immediate effect.
This issues with the approval of the Competent Authority.
All officers of IA Division
(i) PS to MEF
(ii) PPS to Secretary(E&F)
(iii) PPS to SS(JMM)
(iv) PPS to JS(RG)
(v) All SEIAAs/SEACs
(vi) Website of MoEF