• Union Ministry of Coal of India has moved forward with a comprehensive Sustainable Development Plan.
• A full-fledged Sustainable Development Cell (SDC) in Ministry of Coal has been established to advice, mentor and plan action to minimise the adverse impact of mining.
• In line with the commitment of our country to reduce the total projected carbon emissions by one billion tonnes from now onwards till 2030, Bio-Reclamation of mined out land has already been taken up on a big scale by all coal companies through massive tree plantation drive.
• Coal & Lignite companies have planned to install additional 5560 MW of renewable capacity with an investment of over Rs. 15000 Crores. This will take the total installed capacity to 7 GW. Coal India alone has planned to install 3 GW of solar Power in next 5 years to achieve its net zero target.
• First Mile Connectivity (FMC) is other major initiative by coal companies to minimise environmental pollution, where coal is being transported through conveyor belt from Coal Handling Plants to Silo for loading. This process eliminates movement of coal through road.
• Similarly, Surface Coal Gasification Projects have been planned for Syn Gas production to be used further either for production of Methanol/Ethanol, Urea or Petrochemicals. This will be a way forward for use of dry fuel as green coal with relatively lesser carbon footprint and environmental pollution.
Mains Paper 3: Environment
Prelims level: First Mile Connectivity
Mains level: Sustainable Development Efforts