ENVIRONMENT & ECOLOGY ASPECTS

Last Updated : 03/12/2018

The issue of environmental protection and sustainable development of natural resources to preserve the fragile ecological balance for future generations is of vital importance in the North Eastern Region of India. The relationship between the indigenous people of North East India and the available natural resources around them is multi-faceted. The people are dependent on the God gifted natural resources in general and forests in particular for their livelihood and habitation. Their very existence may be threatened by unplanned development leading to the destruction of forests and other natural resources. The NE Region has vast resources and power potential, which needs to be developed in a planned and sustainable manner, while giving special consideration to the unique and invaluable natural environment and preserve the delicate ecological balance.

NEEPCO takes cognizance of the possible impact on environment and ecology and adopts suitable measures to negate any adverse effect on environment and ecology during the execution and operation & maintenance of its projects. Every care is taken to implement and abide by the laws of the land in respect of environment and ecological safeguards.

Being a Central Public Sector Enterprise under the Ministry of Power, Govt. of India, NEEPCO strictly follows and adheres to all policies and guidelines of the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC), Govt. of India (GoI) with regards to identification and mitigation of Environmental impacts of power projects, with due consideration to the distinctive environmental condition of the North East. In order to achieve the objective of sustainable development, Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is carried out for each project. The following are looked into and suitably addressed in the Environment Impact Assessment & Environment Management Plans reports which are appraised by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC), Govt. of India (GoI) while according Environment Clearance to a project:

Assessment of Impact:

  • Impacts on land environment
  • Impacts on water resources & water quality
  • Impacts on aquatic ecology, terrestrial flora & fauna
  • Impacts on noise environment
  • Air pollution
  • Impacts on socio-economic environment
  • Increase incidence of water related diseases.
  • Reservoir induced seismicity (RIS)

Environment Management Plan::

  • Landscaping and restoration of construction areas
  • Compensatory Afforestation
  • Afforesttion
  • Stabilisation of quarry and muck disposal sites
  • Greenbelt development
  • Anti erosion / soil conservation measures
  • Catchment area treatment plan (CAT)
  • Maintenance of water quality
  • Monitoring of sediment load and inferences
  • Bio-diversity conservation plan
  • Sustenance of river fisheries
  • Creation of botanical garden
  • Anti poaching measures
  • Mitigation measure for noise reduction
  • Control of air pollution
  • Public health delivery system
  • Control measures for jhum cultivation
  • Construction of public utilities such as school, postoffice , bank , community hall, market, prayer halls, grave-yards etc.
  • Protection of sites of Archaeological importance
  • Resettlement & rehabilitation measures
  • Dam break analysis and disaster management plan
  • Interaction with district administration for implementation of environmental safeguard measures.
  • Public hearing involving state government authorities , district authorities, NGOs, environmental interest groups , local community, village committees, people representative, public leaders , prominent personalities etc.

The Environment Management Plans (EMP) are framed up and implemented to minimize or offset any adverse impact on the environment, during project construction and its operational phase.

NEEPCO has an Environment & RR Wing at its Corporate Office for dealing with its all environmental issues.

NEEPCO is the first CPSE under Ministry of Power to have been accredited with ISO14001-1996 in the field of Environment Management System (EMS). The company engages leading consultants (Accredited by MoEF&CC, GoI) specialized in environmental fields for preparation of Environment Impact Assessment and formation of Environment Management Plan in totality.

Major thrust areas of NEEPCO in the field of Environment Management include the following:

Compensatory Afforestation:In order to compensate for the forest land diverted for non-forest purposes for the project, afforestation is undertaken over degraded forestland equivalent to twice the area of forestland diverted and in case of diversion of non-forest land, compensatory forest is raised over an area equivalent to the forest area affected of lost.

Greenbelt Development:Apart from the compensatory Afforestation, greenbelt around the perimeter of various project appurtenances, selected stretches along reservoir periphery is also undertaken to arrest soil erosion. Plantation of fruit bearing trees, ornamental trees, avenue plantation, shade trees along with shrubs, climbers etc. and fast growing trees is done.

Catchment Area Treatment (CAT):To counter the menace of soil erosion and landslides, resulting from unplanned human activities, deforestation etc. The adequate preventive measures are needed for treatment of catchment area to arrest soil erosion as it results in siltation of the reservoir and ultimately encroaching upon the efficiency of a project.

Bio-Diversity Conservation:The construction of project may cause damage/destruction to rare species, local flora and fauna and thus bio-diversity conservation plans have been framed for projects in bio-diversity rich areas.

While deciding the appropriate technology for its gas based thermal power Projects, NEEPCO integrates many environmental provisions into the plant design. In order to ensure that NEEPCO complies with all the stipulated environment norms, following state-of-art pollution control systems / devices have been installed to control air and water pollution:

  • Electrostatic Precipitators
  • Fuel Gas Stacks
  • Low-NOx Burners
  • Neutralization Pits
  • Oil Settling Pits
  • DE&DS System Cooling Tower
  • Liquid Waste Treatment Plants & Management System
  • Sewage Treatment Plants & Facilities