Coal India assessing airport project’s impact on coal reserve

November 5th, 2008 - 7:10 pm ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, Nov 5 (IANS) State-owned Coal India Ltd (CIL) Wednesday said it will soon submit a report to the West Bengal and central governments, evaluating the impact of a proposed private airport project on its existing underground coal reserve in the Durgapur-Asansol industrial belt.”We have received the full map of the aerotropolis project. Now we are evaluating its impact on our underground coal reserve. CIL will submit a report to the state government and also to the centre clarifying its position on the issue,” CIL chairman Partha Bhattacharyya told reporters on the sidelines of the ninth International Mining and Machinary Exhibition (IMME) here Wednesday.

The aerotropolis is coming up in Burdwan district’s Andal area. CIL has raised objection saying if the project comes up in the same area, two billion tonnes of coal will become unextractable.

Bhattacharyya has said CIL is looking into several aspects like what is the total volume of coal reserve present in that particular area where the aerotropolis project is supposed to come up.

“This apart, we are also considering whether this project would affect the process of future exploration of coal in that particular region,” he said, adding Central Mine Planning and Design Institute Ltd (CMPDI), a research arm of CIL, is now dealing with the matter.

CIL also submitted its objections to the civil aviation ministry in October this year, stating the facts about how the coal reserves would be affected if the airport project were to come.

“We want aerotropolis project to come but not affecting the existing coal reserve we have over there. CIL would just inform the government about its impact and rest depends on them to decide what to do with the project,” said Bhattacharyya.

He said CIL had a meeting Sep 29 with West Bengal Chief Secretary Amit Kiran Deb about the issue and formed a joint committee to handle the issue. The expert team had also visited the site.

“We’ll incorporate their inputs in the report,” he said.

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