GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
Ministry of Power
UNSTARRED QUESTION NO. 2771
ANSWERED ON DECEMBER 18, 2012
Hydro-Electric Power Projects in Karnataka
2771. SHRI RAJEEV CHANDRASEKHAR:
Will the Minister of POWER be pleased to state:
(a) whether the proposed hydro-electric projects in Karnataka lies in the midst of eco-fragile Western Ghats Rain Forests, and the man-elephant conflict zones;
(b) whether it is a fact that to avoid necessary environmental clearances, some of these projects have been scaled down into smaller projects of less than 25 MW which requires less than five hectares of forest land; and
(c) if so, the details of such projects and action taken by Government?
THE MINISTER OF STATE (INDEPENDENT CHARGE) OF THE MINISTRY OF POWER
(SHRI JYOTIRADITYA M. SCINDIA)
(a): The Techno-economic Clearance (TEC) for Gundia Hydro Electric Project (HEP) (1×200=200 MW), Karnataka lying in Western Ghats was accorded by Central Electricity Authority (CEA) on 25.04.2008. However, Western Ghat Ecology Expert Panel (WGEEP), constituted by Ministry of Environment & Forests (MoEF) has not recommended execution of Gundia HEP as loss of diversity and environmental impacts would be significant. Detailed Project Report (DPR) of Shivasamudram HEP (run-of-river) (3×100+3×15=345 MW), Karnataka was received in CEA in April, 2012 for concurrence. However, the DPR was returned on 16.05.2012 with the observations that the project would be taken up for examination in CEA after inter-State issues are resolved. No other DPR of any HEP in Karnataka in the eco-fragile Western Ghats Rain Forests is pending with CEA for concurrence.
(b) & (c): As per the information furnished by Government of Karnataka, no project has been scaled down into smaller projects of less than 25 MW which require less than five hectares of forest land to avoid necessary environmental clearances.