Locals reject social impact assessment report of Luhri II hydropower project

News this week
11 Dec 2019
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Sutlej river in Kinnaur, Himachal Pradesh (Image source: Sanyam Bahga, Wikipedia)
Sutlej river in Kinnaur, Himachal Pradesh (Image source: Sanyam Bahga, Wikipedia)

Locals say impact assessment report does not accurately represent the real impact of Luhri II hydropower project

Calling the Luhri II Hydropower Project a farce, residents of Nanj village in Karsog have rejected the Social Impact Assessment (SIA) report prepared as part of the rules preceding the land acquisition process during a public hearing. As per the villagers, they were not given sufficient notice or complete information about the dam project prior to the public hearing. Moreover, they alleged that the SIA report did not include any details about the impact of the project and were sketchy and half-baked. Luhri II is one of the three projects being built on the last free-flowing stretch of the Sutlej river. The project will impact eight villages and submerge 119.79 hectares of land spread over 7.5 kilometres. (Hindustan Times)

CoP 25: India isn't ready to talk about new targets under Paris Agreement

Despite being fifth on the list of countries most vulnerable to the effects of climate change (of a total of 181 countries across the world), India made it clear at the 25th United Nations Climate Change conference (CoP 25) in Madrid, Spain, that it would not enhance its climate action targets in 2020. India noted that rich nations have not met their pre-2020 promises under the earlier Kyoto Protocol. Only 70 countries have, so far, announced their intention to submit enhanced national contributions in 2020. China - the biggest current carrbon emitter - may also not revise its target, and even the US has already opted out of the Paris Agreement. (The Times of India, Firstpost)

Environment ministry reluctant to ban RO technology

The Environment Ministry has shown reluctance to prohibit Reverse Osmosis (RO) technology use for purifying water, because it is an agency that should guide and educate on the potential negative impacts of the technology. In May this year, the Supreme Court upheld the National Green Tribunal’s (NGT) order for the prohibiting use of RO in any case where the total dissolved solids (TDS) measure in water was less than 500 mg/liter. But the Water Quality Association India, which includes stakeholders from RO companies, moved the SC against the NGT orders and the SC asked the RO companies to submit their representations to the ministry. (The Hindu)

Kochi launches drive to ensure supply of clean drinking water

Based on a suggestion by the Kerala Legislative Assembly Committee, the administration of Kochi has launched Operation Pure Water to supply clean drinking water to residents. The Kerala Water Authority (KWA) has taken up the resposibilty to distribute the water through tankers that will be drawing water from hydrants of the KWA. The proposed project will be implemented within two weeks, however, these directives have caused concerns among drinking water suppliers as per whom these regulations are impractical. (The Times of India, The News Minute)

Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka could declare no new coal policy

Following the footsteps of Gujarat and Chhattisgarh, the state governments of Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka could also declare a 'no new coal' policy. This implies these states will not need any new coal power plants in the future, and all of their future energy demands could be cost-effectively met by renewable and flexible based energy alone. All three states have the highest renewable energy potential in India, and their installed renewable energy capacities are either higher than coal power or are on a path to overtake it. Moreover, coal power is more expensive in these states and water shortage further detracts from it's attractiveness as a viable source of energy. (The Times of India)

This is a roundup of important news published between December 1- 9, 2019. Also read policy matters this week.




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