Rampal plant yet to get DoE clearance: Manju

Dhaka –The 1320-megawatt thermal power plant project at Rampal, adjacent to the Sundarbans, is yet to get environmental clearance certificate from the Department of Environment (DoE).
“The DoE is yet to provide any environmental clearance for the 1320MW coal-based Rampal thermal power plant in Khulna,” Environment and Forest Minister Anwar Hossain Manju told Parliament on Thursday.

The minister was replying to a starred question from Jatiya Party MP AKM Mayeedul Islam (Kurigram-3).
He, however, said the DoE approved Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report about the project incorporating proper conditions under the Environment Conservation Rules 1997.
“If the mitigation measures the EIA report suggested are properly implemented, there will be no possibility for the project to harm the Sundarbans, the world’s largest mangrove forest,” he said.
Manju also said the Rampal power plant will not affect the Sundarbans, but create employments for local people, increase their purchasing capacity and reduce their dependence on the Sundarbans.
He said the coal-fired thermal power plant will be set up with super critical technology and 59 conditions were imposed in the EIA report to avoid any negative impact on the Sundarbans during the construction and operation phases of the power plant.
As per the conditions, bituminous coal having only 0.6 per cent sulfur will be used in the power plant importing from Australia or Indonesia, he said.
Besides, the minister insisted, the standard of air emitted from the plant will be maintained following the World Bank guidelines, boiled or untreated water will not be released to the river, and the water treated by Effluent Treatment Plant (ETP) will be reutilised as much as possible.
The proper measures would be taken for the optimum utilisation of fly/bottom ash from the proposed power plant, Manju said.
As part of mitigation measures, there will be electro static precipitator (ESP), low nox burner, flue gas desulfurisation (FGD) and 275-metree chimney to control air pollution and there will be ETP, setting pond, waste water treatment plant (WWTP), de-salination plant, API oil water separator, water recycling and reuse to control water pollution, he mentioned.
To prevent pollution caused by coal, coal dust suppression system (DSS), closed conveyor belt and covered cargo or ship will be used in the project, he said.
The minister said there will be online monitoring system to control pollution. A coordinated monitoring team comprising officials of the DoE, BPDB and other agencies concerned, will be there to assess the impacts round the clock, he said.