TNPCB forms committee to study pollution around NLC
CHENNAI: Even though a report highlighted severe water and soil pollution in areas around Neyveli Lignite Corporation (NLC) in Neyveli, the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB) has formed a committee to inspect the area and study the pollution in the locality.
The committee has been formed based on a direction issued by the southern bench of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) that hears suo motu case pertaining to the issue.
The committee was directed to collect water and soil samples in the area and file a report to the Tribunal and file a report.
When the case came up for hearing on Monday, the pollution control board appraised the NGT that the committee has collected samples from a few areas and sent for testing.
The Board sought time for submitting the report as test results are yet to be received.
The suo motu case is based on a report titled 'POWERing Pollution - The Environment Impacts of Thermal Power Stations and Mining Operations in Neyveli and Parangipettai' released by Poovulagin Nanbargal and Manthan Adhyayan Kendra. The report revealed that areas around Neyveli and Parangipettai are severely polluted due to lignite mines and thermal power plants.
As NLC, environment departments of State and Central governments, State municipal administration and water supply department, and Cuddalore district administration sought time to submit their affidavits, the NGT posted the hearing on October 10.
Moreover, samples taken from the borewell at Tholkappiar Nagar in Vadakuvellur showed mercury levels around 250 times higher than the limit. People in the location drink this bore water. There are many kidney patients and people affected by lung diseases, cancer, and skin diseases, the report had said.
The report also recommended central government to come up with a clear road map and decommissioning plan for Neyveli mines and power plants.