Himachal Pradesh's forests make way for Renuka Dam

Policy matters this week
Forest cover of Himachal Pradesh Forest cover of Himachal Pradesh

Forest clearance granted to the proposed Renuka Dam

The Forest Advisory Committee (FAC) of the Ministry for Environment, Forests and Climate Change has granted approval to the proposed Renuka dam project. The project, worth Rs 3,600 crore, requires 909 hectares of forest land in Himachal Pradesh and aims to provide 275 million gallons of water/day to Delhi. Though the approval has been granted, the tricky issues of settling tribal rights and actual demarcation of the land remains unresolved.

No seriousness to clean Ganga: SC

The Supreme Court has warned the Government for showing no urgency to clean the Ganga. While it is being reprimanded for this, the Union Minister for Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation Sushri Uma Bharti has said that the Centre is commited to revive the ancient Saraswati river and trace its route. It has also called for a need to set up the Saraswati Research Institute.

50% diesel & seed subsidy to rain-deprived farmers 

Centre announces 50% diesel and seed subsidy to farmers of regions that have experienced rainfall deficiency of more than 50% as on July 15. The move is aimed at protecting the standing kharif crops and is applicabe to areas declared drought-hit by the states. The Government has also decided to provide a special package of Rs 35,000 per hectare to revive horticultural crops in drought-hit areas.

HC wraps Gujarat Government and Adani Power for damaging environment

The Gujarat High Court has ordered the State Government and Adani Power Ltd to respond to the public interest litigation (PIL) alleging environmental damage at the industry's Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Kutch and surrounding areas. The litigation has blamed Adani Power for constructing a 'kaccha' canal under the sea resulting in water getting mixed with groundwater and making it unfit for drinking and agriculture.

Notice to Environment Ministry for labelling coal as mineral

The National Green Tribunal issues notice to the Environment Ministry for categorising coal as a mineral instead of a bio-resource product. The notice has been served following the petition filed by Chhindwara's Iklehra village (in Madhya Pradesh) panchayat and Village Biodiversity Management Committee who has challenged the Ministry's 2013 guideline that has considered coal as a mineral. The village has also demanded 2% royalty on the coal mined from the area.

This is a weekly roundup of policy matters from August 12-18, 2014. Also read last week's news roundup.

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