Transmission lines through Thane flamingo sanctuary given green light from Center | Bombay News
The expert committee (EAC) of the Union Ministry of the Environment for authorizations of coastal regulatory zones (CRZ) has given the green light to the installation of 47 transmission towers in Mumbai, part of which will cross Thane Creek Flamingo Sanctuary for less than half a mile. .
The project, which will help meet the growing demand for electricity in the suburbs of Mumbai, will also result in the deforestation of more than 1,800 mangroves over 14.5 km across 71 hectares of forest. The mangroves and salt marshes in Airoli, Mulund, Bhandup, Kanjurmarg, Nahur and Vikhroli will be impacted by this project, according to information submitted to the forestry department by the project promoter.
According to a letter of interest issued to a private electricity company Adani Transmission in 2019, the project is expected to be completed by March 2022. However, before proceeding with the physical works, the ad hoc vehicle of Kharghar-Vikhroli Transmission Pvt Ltd will also need to obtain authorization. of the Forestry Department and the National Wildlife Council, which is currently being processed. The Bombay District Court had already granted permission to cut mangroves in February this year.
The Ministry of Environment cleared the project at its 270th CRZ project meeting on August 11, after the Maharashtra State Coastal Zone Management Authority (MCZMA) recommended permission for the project. in June of this year. At the time, it was noted by the committee that around 6,000 mangroves would be affected by the project, in addition to those that would need to be felled. Of the 47 towers proposed to be installed to facilitate the supply of electricity from Airoli in Thane to Vikhroli in Mumbai, 44 will be installed in the CRZ protected area, of which 34 will be installed in the CRZ-IA areas.
The Union Ministry confirmed all the recommendations of the state authority while sanctioning the project. “Bird deflectors should be installed in the transmission line in order to avoid accidental collisions of birds, for example flamingos, etc., with the support of reputable institutions,” noted the EAC.
The forestry department will also have to proceed with compensatory mangrove plantations as well as reforestation of degraded forest lands twice the area diverted for the project. The net present value of forest area has been calculated to be approximately ??9 lakh per hectare.
According to a presentation made to the Union Environment Ministry by the project developer earlier on August 11, “the proposed transmission lines project would provide an additional 1,000 MW of power supply to Mumbai and the surrounding areas. suburbs, thus helping to meet ever-increasing energy demands. from the city. Executing such a public utility project will help Mumbai city to obtain economical energy from other sources, thus benefiting consumers in Mumbai, in terms of ensuring 24 hour supply. and 7 days a week at competitive rates.
Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray had tasked the project promoter to focus on physical works following a major power outage that hit the city in October 2020, hampering health services amid the Covid pandemic -19.