Reports & Analytical Notes (Water and Coal)

This section contains various Reports and Analytical Notes by Manthan’s team members under the Water and Coal theme.

Loss of 17.6 billion Units of power generation due to fly ash related shut downs in Indian thermal power plants between April 2019 and March 2022

Fly ash is a by-product of coal fired electricity generation. Thermal power plants in India generate millions of tons of fly ash annually. On some occasions, issues related to effective management of fly ash have impacted power generation at various thermal power stations. This note presents data pertaining to the loss in power generation due to fly ash related problems in the country for three years. It is informed by data from the Central Electricity Authority’s Daily Generation Reports between January 2019 and April 2022.

Read the full note here.

Note published 23 September 2022.

Fly Ash Disposal in Mine Voids and Low-Lying Areas: Report of a Field Visit to Bokaro (Jharkhand)

The Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change issued an Office Memorandum (OM) on 28th August 2019, permitting – and promoting – the use of fly ash in the filling of abandoned mine voids, in low-lying area reclamation, and as a soil conditioner in agriculture. The OM directs that all existing conditions in Environmental Clearances of thermal power plants that prohibit the use of ash via these modes should be replaced with conditions that allow it. Along with the OM, new guidelines have also been issued by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) which are to be followed when dumping fly ash in mine voids/low-lying areas. As part of ongoing research on the potential social and environmental impacts of such modes of fly ash utilisation, a team from Manthan Adhyayan Kendra visited some abandoned mine voids and low-lying areas in Bokaro, Jharkhand. This note presents the findings of the field visit, along with a preliminary analysis.

Read the full note here.

Read the summary here.

Report Published on 3rd August 2022

खाली खदानों और निचले इलाकों में फ्लाई ऐश का निपटान: बोकारो (झारखंड) के क्षेत्र दौरे पर रिपोर्ट

पर्यावरण, वन और जलवायु परिवर्तन मंत्रालय ने 28 अगस्त 2019 को एक कार्यालय ज्ञापन (ओएम) जारी किया, जिसमें खनन के बाद खाली पड़े खदानों को, निचले क्षेत्रो में मौजूद भूमि के पुनरुद्धार हेतु, और खेती की ज़मीन की मिट्टी के कंडीशनर के रूप में फ्लाई एश के उपयोग करने की अनुमति और बढ़ावा दिया गया है । ज्ञापन (ओएम) निर्देश देता है कि थर्मल पावर प्लांटों की पर्यावरण मंजूरी में सभी मौजूदा शर्तें जो इन तरीकों के माध्यम से राख के उपयोग को प्रतिबंधित करती हैं, उन्हें बदलकर ऐसी शर्ते लागु करनी चाहिए जो इसकी अनुमति देती हैं।

कार्यालय ज्ञापन के साथ-साथ केंद्रीय प्रदूषण नियंत्रण बोर्ड (सीपीसीबी) द्वारा भी नए दिशा-निर्देश जारी किए गए हैं जिनका पालन खदानों/निचले क्षेत्रों में फ्लाई ऐश डालते समय किया जाना है। फ्लाई ऐश उपयोग के ऐसे तरीकों के संभावित सामाजिक और पर्यावरणीय प्रभावों पर चल रहे शोध के हिस्से के रूप में, मंथन अध्ययन केंद्र की एक टीम ने बोकारो, झारखंड में कुछ बंद खदानों और निचले इलाकों का दौरा किया । यह नोट मंथन द्वारा किए गए क्षेत्रीय दौरे के निष्कर्षों को कुछ प्रारंभिक विश्लेषण के साथ-साथ प्रस्तुत करती है।

हिन्दी सारांश यहा पढे

प्रकाशन तिथि : 3 अगस्त 2022

POLLUTED POWER : How Koradi & Khaperkheda Thermal Power Stations are Impacting the Environment


The Koradi & Khaparkheda thermal power plants (TPPs), located near Nagpur city, have long been a source of concern for locals due to significant pollution they produce. Manthan Adhyayan Kendra, in collaboration with Asar Social Impact Advisors & Centre for Sustainable Development, conducted a study in the area near these TPPs to investigate the impact of these installations on the region’s air, land, & water resources. Questionnaire based surveys were conducted in the villages and water samples were obtained and tested from 25 locations in the region throughout 3 seasons to investigate the qualitative component of water contamination. Our investigation also looks into the regulatory bodies’ behavior in monitoring and aiding environmental pollution. The research’s findings are startling, since our examination of the study area surrounding Koradi and Khaparkheda TPPs reveals that pollution is pervasive and unrestrained, contaminating air, surface, groundwater, and soil. Recommendations have been made as a part of this report to correct the existing situation.

Read Full report Here

Read English Summary Here

मराठी सारांश इथे वाचा

हिन्दी सारांश यहा पढे

Short documentary on the issue, Watch Here 

Report Published on 18th November 2021

Lest We Forget – A status report of neglect of coal ash accidents in India (August 2019–May 2021) by the Fly Ash Watch Group

Widespread coal flyash mismanagement and non-compliance with laws, norms, and court orders by thermal power plants highlight that ash pollution from power generation is yet to be treated as a serious threat by authorities and power generators. Lest We Forget provides the current status of eight coal ash accidents that have occurred in India between August 2019 and May 2021. Spanning across six states, the accidents are of ash pond breaches, ash slurry pipeline leaks, and ash slurry discharge into water bodies. The report provides information on the underlying causes of the accidents, the latest status of compensation, remediation, and follow-up action (or lack thereof), and recommendations for the way forward. The report is a collaborative effort of ASAR Social Impact Advisors Pvt. Ltd., Centre for Research on Energy & Clean Air, and Manthan Adhyayan Kendra and has been brought out on behalf of the collective of the Fly Ash Watch Group.

Read Full Report Here.

Report Published on 7th July 2021

व्‍यावसायिक कोयला खनन हेतु नीलामी: छत्तीसगढ के माण्‍ड रायगढ़ क्षेत्र की खदानों को शामिल करने से गंभीर कानूनी, सामाजिक एवं पारिस्थितिक चिंताएँ

दिनांक 18 जून 2020 को प्रधानमंत्री श्री नरेन्द्र मोदी के द्वारा आत्‍म निर्भर भारत अभियान के तहत 41 कोयला खण्‍डों के लिए बेरोक-टोक खनन हेतु नीलामी प्रक्रिया प्रारंभ की जिनमें अंतिम उपयोग अथवा अंतिम उपयोगकर्ता, बिक्री या उपयोग, गैस या द्रव्य में परिवर्तन, या निर्यात पर कोई प्रतिबंध नहीं है ।

व्‍यावसायिक कोयला खनन के लिए देश भर से चयनित 41 कोयला खदानों में से, छत्तीसगढ़ राज्य के उच्‍च जैव-विविधता क्षेत्र तथा प्रस्‍तावित लेमरु हाथी रिजर्व में स्थित 5 कोयला खदानों को स्‍थानीय समुदायों और छत्तीसगढ़ सरकार के कड़े विरोध के कारण नीलामी की सूची से बाहर किया गया।

हालांकि, कुछ दिनो बाद, 3 अन्य खदानों को इस नीलामी की सूची में शामिल किया गया जो की उस क्षेत्र में स्थित है जो की पहले से ही कोयला खनन और ताप विद्युत उत्‍पादन का कहर झेल रहा है। इससे भी अधिक महत्‍व की बात यह है कि इस इलाके की नई खदानों को नीलामी में शामिल करना राष्‍ट्रीय हरित अधिकरण (एनजीटी) के आदेश का स्‍पष्‍ट उल्‍लंघन है और इसे गंभीर कानूनी चुनौती का सामना करना पड़ सकता है।

यह नोट इस मुद्दे पे विस्तृत तरीके से प्रकाश डालता है ।

पढ़ने के लिये यहां क्लिक करे.

प्रकाशन तिथि: 16 सितंबर 2020


Commercial Coal Mining Auctions : Legal, Social & Ecological concerns around inclusion of mines in Mand Raigarh of Chhattisgarh.

18th June 2020 saw the launch of the auction process for 41 coal blocks where coal can be mined for entirely commercial purposes in India. Of the total, 9 mines were from the state of Chhattisgarh. Following strong resistance from communities and the state government, five coal mines falling in the Hasdeo forest and proposed Lemru Elephant Reserve were withdrawn. In lieu of these, three new mines falling in the Mand Raigarh coalfield were added to the list. This note highlights the legal, social and ecological concerns around inclusion of the mines in Mand Raigarh of Chhattisgarh. Raigarh district has borne the brunt of coal mining and related operations for over two decades; legal cognisance of the same has also been taken. If any of the three coal mines later added to the list were to become operational, they could be in direct contravention of a February 2020 order of the National Green Tribunal, which directed, “No further expansion or new projects in the area before thorough evaluation.”

This note highlights the legal, social and ecological concerns around inclusion of the mines in Mand Raigarh of Chhattisgarh.

Note Published on 16th September 2020

Read Full Note Here

ताप विद्युत् संयंत्रो द्वारा जल उपयोग के मानको के उल्लंघन पर मंथन अध्ययन केंद्र द्वारा, सूचना के अधिकार के अंतर्गत प्राप्त जानकारी पर आधारित सारांश रिपोर्ट I

यहाँ  पढ़ें

Wide-spread Non-Compliance as Thermal Power Plants don’t Meet Water Use Norms

This new Note by Manthan Adhyayan Kendra brings out widespread non-compliance by thermal power plants with legally binding limits on how much water they are allowed to use. The Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change had issued a Notification on 7 December 2015 to set legally binding limits on water to be used for each unit of electricity generated (i.e., Specific Water Consumption) by thermal power plants throughout the country. They had to comply by Dec 2017.

This Note is based on an ongoing study by Manthan Adhyayan Kendra using information accessed under the RTI Act  2005, and apart from the non-compliance, highlights several other issues of concern, and gives a set of recommendations to improve monitoring and implementation.

Read the Summary here

Read the Full Note here

Comments on the Standard Conditions to be Stipulated in Environmental Clearances for Thermal
Power Plants, Issued by MoEFCC on 19 Nov 2018

On 19th Nov 2018, the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC) issued Standard Conditions for Thermal Power Sector to be stipulated as conditions while granting the environmental clearance (EC). This note looks at these Standard Conditions to understand whether they strengthen the environmental protection regime vis-à-vis the conditions being stipulated currently while granting ECs.

Note published on 7 Jan 2019.

Read full note here.

Many Thermal Power Plants Violating Zero Waste Water Discharge Norms

The Notification by Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change of Dec 2015 requires all thermal power plants installed after Jan 2017 to achieve Zero Waste Water discharge. However, information obtained by Manthan under the Right to Information Act shows this being grossly violated. The note, part of our ongoing monitoring of compliance of thermal power plants to environmental norms related to water, gives details.

Note Published on 5th Dec 2018.

Read full note here.

Loss of 7 Billion Units power generation due to raw water shortage at coal based thermal power stations in India from June 2016 to April 2017

Coal based thermal power generation needs huge amounts of water. Water shortages have been affecting power generation at such plants on a regular basis. Manthan is monitoring such loss in generation on an ongoing basis. This brief note documents the loss in power generation at coal based power plants due to shortage of water.

Report Published 18th May 2017.

Read full report here.

Environmental Violations in and around Coalmines, Washeries and Thermal Power Plants of Tamnar & Gharghoda Blocks, Dist. Raigarh, Chhattisgarh, Report of Fact Finding Team.

A two-member fact finding team comprising of environmental and social researchers Shripad Dharmadhikary and Manshi Asher inquired into the complaints about environmental pollution, loss of land and livelihood and other impacts of coal mines, coal-washeries and thermal power plants in the Tamnar and Gharghoda blocks of Raigarh district of Chhattisgarh. The focus of the team was on impacts related to water. This is a report of the fact finding team.

Report, published November 2016.

Read full report here

Implications of New Regulations for Water Consumption of Thermal Power PlantsDSC08005

On 8th Dec 2015, the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change, Government of India, notified new regulations concerning emissions and water use of thermal power plants (TPPs) in India. This note analyses some implications of these new regulations  with respect to the water consumption limits of coal based power plants.

Note, published on 8th Feb 2016.

Read or download Summary Highlights here.
Read or download Full Detailed Note here.


Impacts of Coastal Coal Based Thermal Power Plants on Water : Field visit Report

Costal TPP cover pageCoal based thermal power plants (CTPPs) need water in huge quantities, and hence have a significant impact on water resources in the surroundings. However, it is generally assumed that few such concerns exist with respect to coastal coal based power plants as they use sea water, which is available in virtually unlimited amounts. This is fallacious thinking, because it is based on an understanding that sees the use of water by CTPPs only in arithmetic or algebraic terms. In reality, the impact of CTPPs on water is multi-faceted and based on a multi-dimensional, complex relationship. This report brings out such impacts of coastal thermal power plants based on field visit to several such projects.

Report, published 28 October 2014

Read full report here.