The Meghalaya government has transferred ₹100 crore to Central Pollution Control Board for restoration of environment damaged by unregulated rat-hole coal mining in the State, officials said.
The amount was provided from ₹445 crore the State government had collected under the Meghalaya Environment Restoration and Protection Fund (MERPF), an account where 10% of the market value of coal per metric tonne was deposited from the transportation of coal that was extracted before the National Green Tribunal banned rat-hole mining in April 2014.
The NGT has been advising the State government on the utilisation of the MERPF.
A government spokesperson said the State government has so far sanctioned three projects for restoration of environment. One of these is being implemented by the Central Institute of Mine and Fuel Research for treating acidic water. The MERPF will also be utilised in tree plantation and closure of abandoned mines.