Environmental public hearing for SCCL mine held

An environmental public hearing was conducted for change of technology from the Load, Haul and Dumper (LHD) operations to the Continuous Miner method in the existing Padmavathi Khani 5 incline underground mine of the Singareni Collieries Company Limited (SCCL) at Rudrampur in Chunchupalli mandal on Tuesday.

The public hearing was held under the aegis of the Telangana State Pollution Control Board (TSPCB) as per the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC)’s notification dated April 6, 2018, under the environmental clearance re-validation category as per the standard terms of reference, SCCL sources said.

The PK 5 incline existing underground coal mine still has 9.315 million tonnes of coal reserves and 10 years lifespan up to 2029-30.

Coal to the tune of 40.005 million tonnes has already been extracted from the underground mine with a lease area of 916.48 hectares at Rudrampur till September 30, 2020, sources added.

Speaking on the occasion, SCCL General Manager, Kothagudem Area, Ch Narasimha Rao enumerated the growth plans of the State-owned SCCL and the environmental protection measures and the CSR activities.

The SCCL has spent ₹ 12.78 crore on development of roads, improvement of sanitation, education facilities, among other amenities under the Surrounding Habitats Assistance Programme (SHAPE) and the CSR scheme between 2004 to 2019 in the Kothagudem area, he said.

Participating in the public hearing, some of the elected representatives of the local bodies and leaders of various organisations wanted the SCCL management to focus on underground mining, environmental protection, self-employment training to local youth and women in the coal belt region.

They sought wider publicity to the environmental public hearings to ensure active participation of all stakeholders in the process to facilitate elaborate discussion on the environment impact management plans and make the public consultation exercise more meaningful.

Additional Collector Venkateshwarlu presided over the public hearing.

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