Daily Court Digest: Major environment orders (October 3, 2019)

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 03 October 2019

Effective environmental governance can curb crop burning

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has been hearing cases on crop residue burning for the past six years and only effective environmental governance can address the problem, said Justices Adarsh Kumar Goel, SP Wangdi and K Ramakrishnan.

“At the level of states, the responsibility may be more onerous and still more onerous at the district level,” read an October 1, 2019 order of the NGT. The tribunal also ordered that a special cell be created in the office of the chief secretary to review the situation on a daily basis at least for a month.

Similar cells should also be set up at the district magistrates’ offices and other appropriate levels. The monitoring mechanism should be ready by October 7, 2019 and state websites should be used to encourage public participation and awareness.

The tribunal asked joint secretary of Union Ministry of Agriculture, secretaries of agriculture from Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh to be present in the next hearing on October 15 with a status report.

Green nod for mining project in Yamuna valid: NGT

A three-member NGT bench on October 1, 2019 dismissed an application filed against green clearance granted by a state-level Environment Impact Assessment Authority (SEIAA), Himachal Pradesh to a mineral-based industry for mining of sand, stone and bajri in Yamuna.

One of the key reservations against giving the clearance was that the project fell within an eco-sensitive zone and that stream sand mining activities would have adversely impacted the river's water quality.

Another argument was that the proposed mining site was an important wildlife habitat and wildlife corridor as it was surrounded by national parks, sanctuaries and conservation reserves.

A joint inspection had been carried out, the project proponent had got clearances from various authorities and an approved mining plan had been submitted, said the NGT.

Wood-based industries in Uttar Pradesh

The NGT put the provisional licenses for establishment of new wood-based industries in Uttar Pradesh on hold on October 1, 2019. Online recommendations are being considered for these industries.

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