Daily Court Digest: Major environment orders (November 9, 2022)

Down To Earth brings you the top environmental cases heard in the Supreme Court, the high courts and the National Green Tribunal

By DTE Staff
Published: Thursday 10 November 2022

Polluting tyre units come under NGT scanner

The National Green Tribunal has directed that polluting tyre pyrolysis oil units (TPO) be shuttered until they manage to compy with environmental norms.

TPOs should follow ‘zero liquid’ and ‘zero emission’ norms, added the NGT November 7, 2022.

TPOs produce pyrolysis oil from used tyres. It is used as fuel in cement, ceramic and other industries. The process involves combustion and thus generates carbon.

The carbon generated during the process should be used in the cement industry instead of sending them to landfills, the tribunal noted.

The NGT was responding to an application filed by Social Action for Forest and Environment — an environmental protection organisation.The applicant complained about the absence of proper management of end-of-life tyres/waste tyres.

The tribunal has also directed the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) to finalise the classification of the units based on compliance reports filed by them.

The NGT directed CPCB to finalise revised standard operating procedure (SOP) within one month. The SOP should also provide mechanisms for certifying the fuel quality standards of pyro-oil according to the norms of the petroleum ministry, NGT added.

The tribunal had entrusted the CPCB to file a report. The CPCB report compiled the status of all tyre pyrolysis units in the country based on information furnished by state pollution control boards.

The report included 17 states where tyre pyrolysis units exist. There are 757 TPOs in these 17 states, the report noted. Uttar Pradesh has the maximum number of units (148), followed by Haryana (101), Rajasthan (95) and Maharashtra (85).

Some 216 units of the 757 are yet to comply with environmental norms. Some 192 TPO units are closed down for failure to comply with the norms, the report stated.

Illegal mining

The NGT has constituted a joint committee to look into alleged illegal mining in Odan village in the Rajsamand district, Rajasthan. The tribunal was responding to an application November 7.

The tribunal directed the committee to submit an action-taken report after visiting the village. The report should be filed within four weeks, the NGT noted. Next hearing on the matter is scheduled for December 13, 2022.

Encroachment on Upper lake

The NGT has directed the Bhopal municipal corporation to initiate necessary action to remove encroachment on the upper lake — an internationally acclaimed Ramsar site.

The lake is a major source of drinking water for the city’s residents. The tribunal was responding to an application November 9, 2022.

The tribunal has also directed the Madhya Pradesh State Pollution Control Board “to take necessary actions for slapping environmental compensation against the same.”

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