Saturday, February 20, 2010


Vidarbha Environmental Action Group (VEAG) a movement of people of Vidarbha is holding a meeting tomorrow to discuss the environmental issues of proposed 49 new coals fired thermal power plants.

Concerned citizens who include industrialists, doctors, lawyers, traders, farmers etc have come together to form the VEAG.

It is common knowledge that Chandrapur, home of the Chandrapur Thermal Power Plant, is the 4th most polluted city in India. Just last year the people of Nagpur had to suffer because of the failure of the pollution control equipment at the Koradi Thermal Power Plant.

The Government’s intention to permit as many as 49 new coal fired thermal power plants is a matter of great distress considering the quantity of pollution that people of Vidarbha will have to live with. This decision is all the more distressing when we face the threat of Climate Change.

Though these plants will collectively generate 35000 MW of power it will not be used for Vidarbha. This power will be transmitted to Western Maharashtra and other power deficit areas. Vidarbha is already power a surplus area and over 2500 MW of power is currently being transmitted to other parts of Maharashtra. In spite of being power surplus the Vidarbha is facing prolonged power cuts resulting in the economic crises responsible for farmer suicides.

The new plants will rely on imported coal or poor quality coal to be transported from Orissa as there is no sufficient coal in Vidarbha.

The new thermal power plants will require 16000 lakhs tons of raw water per day and burn over 7,25,000 Tons per day of Coal and generate over 2,90,000 Tons per day of Ash. Also 35000 Acres of fertile land will be required only for Ash disposal. The transmission line corridor will require additional 70,000 acres of lands. As there is no demand in Vidarbha huge transmission loses will take place resulting in increasing cost of power to consumer.

Therefore this decision begs the question “why set up coal based thermal power plants when the region is already power surplus and far away from coal mines and consumer?”

In fact there are multiple reasons for this decision

1. The farmers of Vidarbha are already in an economical crisis thus they could be induced to sell their land at throw away prices.

2. There is a general conception that the people of Vidarbha do not protest any injustices done to them so such polluting industries can easily come up.

3. The people of Vidarbha are unaware of hazardous nature of fly ash and gases which will be generated by these power plants.

4. Water from major rivers like Vainganga, Kanhan, Wardha, Pench, Painganga that is used for agriculture and for drinking in urban areas can be easily diverted to these coal fired thermal power plants.

5. Vidarbha being centrally located power can be transmitted to any part of the country by very high voltage transmission lines.

In order to save the environment of Vidarbha it is necessary to educate general public from the ill effects of mega power projects being set up in Vidarbha. Shri R. B. Goenka, Convenor , Vidarbha Environmental Action Group (VEAG) has arranged meeting for all those who are concerned about future of Vidarbha. Experts in the field of energy and environment will give presentation and discuss the issue in detail.

All are invited to attend. Interested person who would like to express their views can mail their request letter to Or call 09422114979 / 9765494321.

The meeting will be held at 4:30 PM at 1 st floor, VIA Hall, Udyog Bhavan, Civil Lines, Nagpur , on Sunday 21st feb. 2010.

For Vidarbha Environmental Action Group (VEAG)

R. B. Goenka,

No comments: