A new commercial airport will be developed in Kutch, Gujarat, after the Union Environment Ministry gave it a green nod following consultations from a panel of experts. Estimated to be worth Rs 14 billion, the project will be built by Mundra International Airport.
With respect to the environment impact assessment (EIA), the Environment Ministry is dabbling with the prospect of relaxing various green norms which is set to benefit the mining and infrastructure sectors. The EIA is carried out prior to giving development projects the final approval.
The Environment Ministry’ Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) has cleared the construction of a new integrated terminal and an apron which will be built as part of the proposed expansion of the Tiruchi airport.
The Union Environment Ministry has reportedly been directed by the National Green Tribunal (NGT) not to provide environmental clearance to any new thermal power plant unless they comply with emission standards notified in December 2015.
The Solar Thermal Federation of India (STFI) and the Indo-German Chamber of Commerce (IGCC) have teamed up for the international ‘Solar Payback’ project, which aims to increase the use of solar thermal energy in industrial processes. The kick-off meeting took place in Mumbai on December 16, 2016.
At least 118 projects in the North-East are pending with the Union environment ministry for forest clearance. As per official data from the ministry of environment, forest and climate change (MoEFCC) for the 2013-November 2016 period, 60 per cent of the 118 are road projects.
The clearance process for highways expansion has been simplified by the Union Environment Ministry. The simplification comes following intense pressure to speed up the process to aid infrastructure development including setting up townships and area-development projects. A notification to this effect was issued by the Ministry recently.
As the Union Environment Ministry is set to give its clearances to a clutch of stranded highway projects in one go, work could soon begin with a combined investments of over Rs 20,000 crore. The Ministry’s blanket approval is enabled by its decision to de-link the environment and forest clearances (EC and FC) for road projects, as per a recent Supreme Court directive.