Daily Court Digest: Major environment orders (May 28, 2019)

Down To Earth brings you the top environmental cases heard in the Supreme Court, the high courts and the National Green Tribunal
Daily Court Digest: Major environment orders (May 28, 2019)

Use latest tech to control stack emission: NGT

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on May 24, 2019 directed the Lalitpur Power Generation Co (LPGC) to comply with the recommendations submitted by a joint committee, especially ensuring the use of latest technology instead of electro-static precipitators for the control of stack emissions.

The plant based in Lalitpur, Uttar Pradesh, has been asked to submit an action plan for mitigation, which will be examined by the committee along with assessing the amount of compensation to be recovered on account of the harm to the environment. 

Action for Vigilance and Knowledge for Empowerment had filed an application with the NGT, alleging that LPGC was using fresh water in excess of the permitted limit, not monitoring ambient air quality, not treating waste-water and was violating green belt plantation requirement around the plant.

The joint committee report also pointed out deficiencies related to fly ash disposal, installation of Continuous Ambient Air Quality Monitoring Stations, handling hazardous waste, control of fugitive emissions, adequate tree plantation and proper operation of sewage treatment plants.

DPCC to recover compensation from Narela, Bawana plastic

Open dumping of waste and burning of plastic waste, drains fully chocked by waste in the absence of collection and untreated waste water from industries being directly discharged into the drains in Narela as well as Bawana industrial areas of Delhi came up for the consideration before the NGT on May 24, 2019.

According to a committee report, industries were asked to pay compensation of Rs 50,000-10 lakh to for environmental offences such as air pollution and dumping of garbage. The sub-divisional magistrate has been asked to recover the damages as arrears of the land revenue and a policy framed for recovery of compensation.

The NGT directs a further action taken report in the matter of actual closure of the defaulting units and recovery of compensation as assessed to be filed by the Delhi Pollution Control Committee within three months.

Animal waste in Sutlej

Animal carcasses were allegedly being disposed in the Sutlej at Ladhowal village in Punjab's Ludhiana, the NGT heard on May 24, 2019. Such dumping, without any consent/permission from concerned authorities, led to the discharge of untreated effluents, contaminated chemicals, left-over waste and blood of dead animals into the river and the release of toxic fumes and gases, spreading foul smell in the area up to several kilometres.

The NGT directed a joint committee, comprising representatives of Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), Punjab PCB and the district magistrate to check facts and ensure proper action by the statutory authorities under the Water Act 1974, Air Act 1981 and the Environment Act 1986 in accordance with law within two months.

Rihand reservoir polluted by thermal plants

The violation of environment norms by thermal power stations operating in the districts of Singrauli and Sonebhadra in the states of Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh has resulted in damage caused to water bodies, including Rihand reservoir. Surface and underground water have been polluted affecting rivers like Son, Renu, Bijul and streams/nalas like Ballia Nala, Chatka Nala, Kahuwa Nala. The case came up for hearing on May 24, 2019 before the NGT.

The tribunal directed the constitution of a committee comprising representatives of the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, CPCB, the Uttar Pradesh PCB and the Madhya Pradesh PCB to look into the matter; statutory authorities were asked to take appropriate action and recover compensation for damage to the environment from identified polluters and furnish a report to the tribunal within three months.

Gujarat asked to explain buying buses

The NGT on May 24, 2019 directed Gujarat to furnish its response by way of a factual and action taken report in the purchase of 4,000 BS-IV buses for non-essential purposes, in violation of orders by the Supreme Court and the NGT, within one month. 

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