Resource Digest - - MINING -

State-owned Western Coal­field Ltd (WCL) has got the en­vi­ron­ment clear­ance for rais­ing pro­duc­tion ca­pac­ity of its Ju­nad Deep Open Cast mine in Ma­ha­rash­tra to 1.5 mil­lion tonne per an­num (MTPA) from ex­ist­ing 0.60 MTPA.

The ex­pan­sion of the mine, lo­cated in Ya­vat­mal dis­trict, would en­tail an in­vest­ment of Rs 58 crore and would en­sure reg­u­lar coal sup­plies to ther­mal power plant of Mahagenco. WCL is the one of the eight sub­sidiaries of Coal In­dia. "The Min­istry of En­vi­ron­ment and For­est hereby ac­cords en­vi­ron­ment clear­ance (EC) to Ju­nad Deep open cast (OC) mine project for ca­pac­ity en­hance­ment from 0.60 MTPA to 1.5 MTPA," ac­cord­ing to the EC let­ter granted to the Western Coal­fields.

The Min­istry has also given green nod for in­creas­ing the land area of the mine from 174.28 hectare to 449.63 hectare sub­ject to cer­tain con­di­tions, the let­ter said.

WCL has been asked to put in place an af­foresta­tion plan cov­er­ing an area of 210 hectare at the end of min­ing with a den­sity of tree plan­ta­tion of 2,500 trees per hectare.

The com­pany has been asked to main­tain the fi­nal mine void depth not more than 40 me­ters. The void area should be con­verted into wa­ter body and the rest of the area should be back filled upon the ground level.

That apart, WCL has been asked to bring the land af­ter min­ing back to agri­cul­ture. The CSR cost should be Rs 5 per tonne of coal pro­duced, which should be ad­justed as per the an­nual in­fla­tion.

Among other con­di­tions, the Min­istry said WCL should prac­tice con­trolled blast­ing with use of de­lay det­o­na­tors and only dur­ing day time. The mit­iga­tive mea­sures for con­trol of ground vi­bra­tions and to ar­rest the fly rocks and boul­ders should be im­ple­mented.

"No ground­wa­ter should be used for min­ing oper­a­tions and min­ing should be phased out in sus­tain­able man­ner," it said.

The com­pany has in­formed the gov­ern­ment that to­tal land re­quire­ment of the project is 449.53 hectare. Out of which, 174.28 hectare has al­ready been ac­quired in ex­ist­ing Ju­nad open cast mine and the bal­ance will have to be ac­quired.

The pro­posed mine area has a ge­o­log­i­cal re­serve of 14.58 mil­lion tonnes. The mine­able re­serve is 6.13 mil­lion tonnes, while the ex­tractable re­serve is 6.13 mil­lion tonnes. The Ju­nad OC mine has a life of 11 years, it added.

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