Fluoride Action Network

‘Curb emissions or face penalty’

Source: The Indian Express | July 29th, 2003 | by Express News Service
Industry type: Phosphate Industry

New Delhi, July 29: The Government today warned cement, iron and steel, and thermal power plants against flouting environmental norms. The industrial units, both in public and private sector, have been asked to furnish a bank guarantee as an expression of their commitment to work toward a cleaner environmental norms.

In a three-hour-long review held by the Ministry of Environment and Forests, four months after a charter was signed, the industry and corporate sector was given another warning before their bank guarantees could be forfeited.

It warned all fertiliser units to meet fluoride emission limits of 25 mg/m3 and all new urea plants, paper mills and tannery units to adopt the common chemical recovery system within three months.

The Task Force on Environment Protection which met here under the chairmanship of Environment Minister T.R. Baalu, reviewed the industry’s compliance with pollution control norms adopted in a charter in March this year.

Though Baalu sought to dismiss this penalty clause as a ‘‘mere deterrent for the industry against non-compliance’’, Ministry sources said action had been initiated against some defaulters in this regard.

The Minister, however, said the review meeting found encouraging results with 90 per cent units complying with the pollution control norms.

The aluminum industry has been asked to reduce the fluoride emission from one kg per tonne to 0.8 kg per tonne and iron and steel plants to use tar or oil or ETP sludge in blast furnaces. Similarly, refineries have been directed to reduce sulphur-dioxide emission in sensitive areas and new guidelines have been framed for the height of the chimney to make them ventilation co-efficient.