Navelim (Bicholim) pollution under control

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August 23, 2012 at 5:05 am #3783

The situation in Navelim village in Bicholim taluka which saw a black powdery dust emanating from Sesa Goa’s plants and entering houses creating panic, is under control after the company discontinued using high capacity burners at its metallurgical coke plant which is under expansion.

Speaking to TOI on Monday, Sesa Goa associate general manager for safety Mahesh Mahajan said, “Presently, we have stopped all nine burners. The mixed fire had generated soot. We have installed persons to monitor the situation. We strove hard to rectify the situation and have achieved success. The mixed fire was caused when we started commissioning the second battery of the coke oven plant.”

On Saturday, when thick black layers of powder had polluted food and water, upset villagers and sarpanch Gopinath Gauns informed the officials of the company of the problem.

Gauns said, “The company officials are reckless and that is why our village got affected by pollutants. Our panchayat has taken a decision to fight pollution.”

In a statement Sesa Goa said commissioning of its metallurgical coke plant expansion is underway and heating of the second battery of coke ovens started on Thursday. As part of the initial steps of the heating process, the coke ovens are required to be pre-heated, as a one-time activity, before they are charged, the statement said adding that high capacity diesel burners are used for pre-heating.

On Friday at around 7pm, an “unexpected misfiring” in two high capacity diesel burners resulted in the generation of soot, which dispersed into the atmosphere, Sesa Goa said. “Immediately, the burners were set right and the process was continued. However, despite precautions, two burners misfired again at around 11pm on Saturday”, it said.

The company also said that “to ensure that no further inconvenience” is caused to people or property, it discontinued further use of all high capacity burners.

In March 2010, GSPCB had given consent to Sesa for establishing a mini blast furnace, sinter plant, coke oven for manufacture of met coke and waste heat recovery boiler for generation of power.

Source/Reference: Times of India, “Navelim pollution under control

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