Coal-based power plants again get extension to install emissions control equipment

NEW DELHI: After twice extending the deadline for coal-fired power plants to implement emission standards announced in 2015, the Environment Department has once again extended the deadline for installation of control technologies. pollution control.
The latest notice, issued on Monday, extended this deadline for retired units (over 25 years old) to December 31, 2027 and for non-retired units to December 31, 2020. 2026. It also extends the implementation period for power plants within 10 km radius of Delhi-NCR and cities with a population of more than one million people to 31 December 2024 from the previous deadline of 2026. December 31, 2022.
On the other hand, the new deadline for power plants located within a 10 km radius of severely polluted areas has been extended from December 31, 2023 to December 31, 2025 while the new deadline for all Other power plants across the country are December 31, 2026. compared to the previous deadline of December 31, 2024.
According to the 2015 announcement on emission targets to control sulfur dioxide (SO2), NOx and mercury from coal-fired power plants, all of these plants are required to meet emission standards targets. and install a desulfurization system (FGD) – the process of removing sulfur compounds from the emissions of fossil fuel-powered power plants – in December 2017.
“Emissions norms have been put in place, recognizing coal-fired power plants as a major contributor to air pollution and leading to deaths. But these extensions when rolled out show that polluters’ concerns prevail over public health in India, and that needs to stop immediately.” Sunil DahiyaAnalyst at the Center for Clean Air and Energy Research (CREA).
Units planning to retire before December 31, 2027, will now be exempt from installing the FGD, and will instead only have to submit an exemption request to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and The Central Electricity Authority (CEA) cites grounds for retirement.
The CREA results show that out of a total of 35 units (33 units within a 300 km radius from Delhi-NCR and two further away), only six have FGD or Spray Dry Absorption (DSI) installed. to control SO2 emissions as of today, 29 units remain. Unit does not have any SO2 control.

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