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Bhadreshwar OPG power station

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Bhadreshwar power station (OPG) is a 300-megawatt (MW) coal plant in Gujarat, India.

Location

The undated satellite photo below shows the power station in Bhadreshwar village.

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Background

On February 8, 2012, the National Green Tribunal, a body created in 2010 to handle cases relating to environmental protection, directed that no construction activity should take place with respect to the plant until all approvals are obtained by OPG Power Ventures, the sponsor of the project. Construction had begun at the site without the necessary approvals under the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980, and CRZ clearance. The construction had been challenged at the National Green Tribunal by fisherfolk, salpan workers, and local villagers.[1]

The NGT said, in what seemed like a misguided effort to make the project look clean, the company's environmental impact assessment (EIA) report actually recorded pollution indicators well below possible levels, essentially fabricating their data.[2]

The halting of the project was an unusual event. According to Prayas Energy Group, "It is extremely rare for a thermal power plant (TPP) to have its environmental clearance rejected. In fact, not a single thermal power plant has been denied clearance by the MoEF from 2006 to July 2010...."[3]

Fishermen protest

According to a March 2014 article in the Indian Express, fishermen in Bhadreshwar confronted AAP convener Arvind Kejriwal to express their opposition to the OPG plant. The fishermen submitted a memorandum to Kejiriwal urging him to stop the power plant construction due to threats it posed to their fishing water.[4]

Construction resumes

As of July 2014, the company was reporting that construction was nearing completion at the site and heading toward commissioning in the last quarter of 2014:[5]

The milestone activity of hydraulic testing for both units has previously been completed. Here, the assembly and installation of both turbines and the generator and instrumentation is significantly advanced too. The state-owned electricity transmission company is preparing its high voltage transmission infrastructure including transmission lines for evacuation of power from the plant, an activity that the Company is undertaking, in part, on behalf of the state. Both projects remain on track for commissioning to commence in the last quarter of calendar year 2014.

Operation

The power plant was commissioned in February 2015.[6]

National Green Tribunal order

The order of the National Green Tribunal can be found here.

Press coverage

The order to stop construction of the plant attracted nationwide media attention, including the following stories:

Activist Groups

Project Details

Sponsor: OPG Power Ventures
Location: Bhadreshwar village, Mundra taluk, Kutch district, Gujarat
Coordinates: 22.896182, 69.896263| (exact)
Status: Operating
Nameplate capacity: 300 MW (2 x 150 MW)
Type:
In service: 2015
Coal Source: imported and domestic coal
Estimated annual CO2:
Source of financing:

Resources and articles

References

  1. "National Green Tribunal directs that no construction begin till all approvals are obtained by OPG," Machimar Adhikar Sangharsh Sangathan (MASS) blog, February 15, 2012
  2. "Environment reports have ‘cooked data,' says tribunal," The Hindu, Feb. 12, 2012.
  3. "Thermal Power Plants on the Anvil," Prayas Energy Group, August 2011, p. 2
  4. Gopal B Kateshiya, "Arvind Kejriwal finds ‘bakwas’ in Gujarat, faces protests himself," Indian Express, March 7, 2014
  5. "OPG Project Update," OPG website, July 1, 2014
  6. "OPG Power to commission 300 MW power plant on Saturday," live mint, Feb 26, 2015

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