Salem, 25 March, 2008: On 24th March the Environment Appellate Authority ordered Chemplast Sanmar Ltd, Mettur to stop construction or operation of their illegal thermal power plant. All work within this unit has been stopped since this morning. This order was based on an application filed by Nityanand Jayaraman challenging the continued construction of the power plant.
The Tamilnadu Pollution Control Board issued a show cause notice on December 6, 2007 to Chemplast for violating the Environment Impact Assessment Notification and the Kaveri GO. Chemplast Sanmar failed to respond to the notice or adhere to the repeated orders of the Tamilnadu Pollution Control Board.
The Kaveri GO dated 08.05098 imposes a total ban of setting up of highly polluting industries within 5 km from the embankments of River Kaveri and its tributaries. The EIA Notification requires this project to get an Environmental Clearance from the Ministry of Environment and Forest before commencing with any construction work.
“The site on which the plant is being built was previously a hazardous waste dump site. Once the construction of the thermal plant is completed the waste cannot be removed and remidiated.” said Madeshwaran of Gonur West Agriculturists Development union.
Since January 2007 the local villagers have repeatedly informed the authorities of the illegal construction of the thermal plant.
Chemplast Sanmar has faced serious allegations by villagers of polluting and contaminating the air, water and soil in Mettur with highly toxic and potent chemicals. Moreover Chemplast Sanmar discharges its effluents into River Kaveri through pipelines. The Tamilnadu Pollution Control Board and other district authorities have not take any action against the company while on the other hand they are being allowed to expand their production.