Even though, environmental sustainability may appear too far-fetched when it comes to coal-related operations, Vedanta’s and Adani’s coal projects in Goa have set pioneering benchmarks
At a webinar on World Environment Day, Mahesh Patil, a member of Goa Coastal Zone Management Authority (GCZMA) and Manoj Borkar, a biologist, highlighted the pitfalls of aggressive economic developmental activities and the need to take a sustainable approach.
Especially, in a state like Goa that has a rich biodiversity, ecosystem restoration has become the need of the hour. However, this can be further accelerated with equal participation from the private players. Vedanta and the Adani Group’s coal projects in Goa are among the testaments of how sustainability can be integrated in coal-related operations, which are usually deemed environmentally detrimental.
In its bid to reduce the environmental impact of coal operations, the Adani Group has been making use of water spray which reduces coal dust emissions to a significant degree. The group loads and unloads coal at the Mormugao Port Terminal, where it holds 10 per cent stake. Similarly, Vedanta and JSW, which own two berths each at the terminal’s coal handling facility, have also been leveraging spray systems. The spray water is added with wetting agents that help in capturing dust better.
The fact that coal dust impacts the environment as well as people’s health is undeniable. In this regard, sustainable approaches adopted by companies like Adani at their coal projects in Goa, are significant.
Forging ahead in its sustainability drive, Vedanta has also been re-greening one of its mines. The company has been undertaking spice and horticulture plantations at the Sanquelim mine. In fact, it is one of the few mining businesses that have taken such an initiative. Regardless of how big or small, efforts like these, especially in a biodiversity-rich state like Goa, is definitely the need of the hour.
While India is making great strides in renewable energy sector for attaining carbon neutrality, coal still remains indispensable for fulfilling current power demands. Sustainable and eco-friendly approach may appear too far-fetched of an attempt when it comes to coal-related operations. However, companies like Vedanta and Adani’s coal projects in Goa, have definitely proven otherwise.