Is it a Boon or a Bane? Government Approving Private Firms For Limestone Mining Extension Projects In Meghalaya

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-NET Web Desk

The Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change, New Delhi has granted environmental clearance to Star Cement for expanding its limestone mining project in Brishyrnot village, East Jaintia Hills district.

“This is to inform the public that the Star Cement Meghalaya Limited has been accorded environmental clearance by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, New Delhi for its mining lease area of 42.051 hectares, located at Brishyrnot village with a production capacity of 2.507 Million TPA of limestone and production capacity of 0.217 Million TPA of shale”, – stated by the public notice released by Star Cement.

It is a common perception that private businesses like Star Cement are now placing the environment at risk for self-benefits. Recently, a massive protest was organized against such projects by several Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) and locals. It was believed that the limestone mining project will pollute the environment. There were concerns that the project located near the Narpuh Wildlife Sanctuary and Wah Lukha will adversely impact the areeas in its vicinity. The protests gradually turned violent on November 21, 2020, this massive injuring many in due course

Even Meghalaya CM, Conrad K Sangma then had to cancel the public hearings due to stiff opposition.

Several such projects are in the pipeline in  Meghalaya stood which may have a considerable impact on the environment.  One of them being the 210 MW Hydroelectric project that is proposed to be implemented on the Umngot River.

Over the years, this river grew to be a major source of livelihood for people of the neighbouring regions. Fishing, tourism in the river are a source of income for many. Building a dam on the river might bring sorrow for these families if their plight is not taken into consideration.

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