Hydro Power Projects

2022: Environment & Forest Clearances to Dams, Hydro, Irrigation Projects

On the basis of minutes of meetings held by Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change’s (MoEF) Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) for River Valley and Hydropower Projects from January 12, 2022 to November 30, 2022; we present region wise details of various Dams, Hydroelectric Power (HEP), Pumped Storage Hydro Projects (PSHP) and Irrigation Projects proposals considered and approved for Terms of Reference (TOR) and Environment Clearance (EC) by the EAC. It also lists out various water projects related proposals seeking Forest Clearances (FC) from and decisions by the Forest Appraisal Committee (FAC) of MoEF in this period.

SANDRP’s 2020 and 2021 overviews on the subject can be seen by clicking the links. You may also like to visit our 2022 overviews on (1) Dam induced floods & damages, (2) Fly ash dam breach incidents, (3) Impact of floods on Polavaram project, (4) People’s resistance against dams and hydro projects, (5) Disasters and accidents at HEPs sites, (6) Dam Safety Issues, (7) Hydro projects opposition and accidents in South Asia.

EAC Decisions: NORTH INDIA

SNProject Name Cap. (in Mw)DeveloperDistrict/ State  River/ BasinMeeting DateProposalDecision
1Sach Khas HEP 288 MwSJVNLChamba/ HPChenab/ Indus12 Jan. 2022For ToRApproved
2Renukaji Dam Project,40 MwHPPCLSirmour/ Himachal PradeshGiri/ Yamuna08 April 2022For ToRMore Info. Sought
     29 July 2022For ToRApplication Withdrawn
3Shongtong-Karcham HEP 402 MwShongtong Karchham HEP, HPPCLKinnaur/ Himachal PradeshSutlej/ Indus12 Aug. 2022Amendment in ECPP absent, Deferred to next meeting
     30 Nov. 2022Extension of Validity of EC, including for enhanced capacity to 450 MwEAC sub-committee to visit the site. Decision Deferred
4Dugar HEP 500 MwNHPC LtdChamba/ Himachal PradeshChenab/ Indus29 Aug. 2022For ECApproved
5Kishau Multipurpose Project 660 MwKishau Corp LtdSirmaur/ HP Dehradun/ UttarakhandTons/ Yamuna15 June 2022For ToRMore Info. Sought
6Phata Byung HEP 76MwLanco Mandakini Hydro Energy Pvt LtdRudraprayag/ UttarakhandMandakini/ Alaknanda14 March 2022Extension of Validity of ECNot Accepted. PP may apply for fresh EC
7Sirkari-Bhyol Rupsiabagar HEP 168 MwUJVN Ltd.Pithoragarh/ UttarakhandGoriganga/ Mahakali29 Aug. 2022Reconsidera-tion of grant of ECSite visit by a sub-committee

In North region, EAC considered 7 HEP projects in the Himalayan states of Himachal Pradesh (04) and Uttarakhand (2), while one project Kishau dam project is interstate project. Of the 7 proposals EAC approved EC for 500 Mw Dugar HEP during Aug. 29, 2022 meeting.  It has also approved ToR for 288 Mw Such Khas HEP on March 14, 2022. Both these projects are on Chenab river in Himachal Pradesh. The ToR application for Renuka dam project has been withdrawn on July 29, 2022.

NORTH EAST & EAST INDIA

SNProject Name Cap. (in Mw)DeveloperDistrict / State  River BasinMeet. DateProposalDecision
1Khuitam HEP 66 MwAdi-shankar Power Pvt LtdDirang Circle/ West KamengGang river, a tributary of Bichom/ Kameng12 Jan. 2022Extension of validity of EC dated 28 Jan 2011. Work not started. No PPA (even now). EC can be extended by 3 years.Approved
2Oju HEP 1878 Mw  Oju Subansiri Hydro Power Corp Pvt LtdUpper Subansiri/ Arunachal PradeshSubansiri/ Brahma-putra29 July 2022For ToRApproved
3CIA & CCS of Tirap Basin. Inclusion of Chinglum HEP in Subansiri Basin Arunachal PradeshTirap/ Subansiri29 July 2022Recommendation of the StudyMore Info. Sought
4Teesta Low Dam – I & II (Combined) HEP 71 Mw (2×30+1×11)WB  Electricity Distribution Company LtdDarjeeling/ W BengalTeesta/ Brahma-putra22 Feb 2022For ToREAC sub com to do site visit
     01 July 2022For ToRDeferred as site visit report not yet submitted
     29 July 2022Site Visit ReportProject NOT suitable and not recommended for TOR
     12 Aug. 2022 Not recommended for ToR
5CIA & CCS of Teesta River Basin StudyW Bengal State Electricity Distribution Compny LtdWest BengalTeesta15 Nov. 2022For acceptance of study reportTo be considered in next meeting
     30 Nov. 2022For acceptance of study reportApproved
6Basin Wise Reassessment of Hydroelectric Potential   12 Aug. 2022Submission of draft report of West Flowing Rivers BasinComments provided on Env aspects
7Review meeting for proposal of Three Tier Monitoring Mechanism   12 Aug. 2022 Comments Given
8CHIREC PSHP 75 MwVenika Green Power Pvt LtdSurajpur/ ChhattisgarhRihand11 Oct. 2022For ToRPP Absent

In North East & East India the EAC considered 8 proposals of which 3 were from Arunachal Pradesh, 2 from West Bengal and 1 from Chhattisgarh states. Of all the proposals, EAC approved the extension of EC validity for 66 Mw Khuitam HEP on 12 Jan. 2022 and ToR for 1878 Mw Oju HEP on July 29, 2022. Both projects are in Arunachal Pradesh.

The EC to Khuitam HEP granted on Jan. 28, 2011 was valid for 10 years and expendable for 3 years. So far the PP could neither start the work nor could sign Power Purchase Agreement (PPA).

In West Bengal, the EAC accepted study proposal for Cumulative Impact Assessment (CIA) & Carrying Capacity Study (CCS) of Teesta River Basin in W Bengal on Nov. 30, 2022. While considering CIA & CCS of Tirap Basin, inclusion of Chinglum HEP in Subansiri Basin (Arunachal) on July 29, 2022, the EAC sought more information.

WEST INDIA

SNProject Name Cap. (in Mw)DeveloperDistrict/ State  River BasinMeet. DateProposalDecision
1Gond Major Irrigation ProjectMP WRDSingrauli/ MPGopad/ Sone12 Jan. 2022Reconsidera-tion of ECPP Absent
2Chinki Boras Barrage Combined Multipurpose Project 50 MwRani Avanti Bai Lodhi Sagar ProjectRaisen, Hoshangabad, Narsimhapur/ MPNarmada28 Jan. 2022For ToRApproved
3Banda Major Irrigation ProjectMP WRDSagar/ MPBanda/ Betwa28 Jan. 2022For ECApproved
4Lower Orr Dam project under Ken-Betwa Link Project Ph IINWDAAshoknagar/ MPOrr/ Yamuna14 March 2022For ECMore Info. Sought
     31 May 2022For ECEAC sub-committee to conduct site visit,
5Kopra Medium Irrigation Project Sagar/ MPKopra/ Ken09 May 2022For ToRMore Info Sought
     15 June 2022For ToRPP Absent
6Kurha Vadhoda Islampur LISTapi Irrigation Dev. Corp. JalgaonJalgaon/ MaharashtraPurna/ Godavari14 March 2022For ToRSite visit by EAC sub com is required
     29 July 2022Site visit report for ToRApproved
     12 Aug. 2022Site visit reportToR already approved
7Brahmagavhan LIS IIIGodavari Marathwada Irrigation Department CorpAurangabad/ MaharashtraGodavari08 April 2022For ECMore Info. Sought
8Bhavali PSHP 1500 MWJSW Energy PSP Two LtdThane/ MaharashtraBham/ Godavari09 May 2022For ToRApproved
9Patgaon PSHP  2100 MWAdani Green Energy LtdKolhapur & Sindhudurg/ MaharashtraVedganga/ Krishna29 Aug. 2022For ToRApproved
10Tarali PSHP 1500 MWAdani Green Energy LtdSatara/ MaharashtraTarali/ Krishna14 Sept. 2022For ToRApproved
11Conventional barrageSurat Municipal CorpSurat/ GujaratTapi14 March 2022For ToRNot under  EIA notification
12Sukhpura Standalone PSHP 5040 MwGreenko Energies Pvt LtdChittorgarh/ RajasthanChambal/ Yamuna01 July 2022For Amendments in ToRApproved
13Rana Pratap Sagar Off-Stream Closed Loop PSHP 1200 MwSemaliya Energy Pvt LtdChittorgarh/ RajasthanChambal/ Yamuna29 July 2022For TORApproved
14Damanganga-Vaitarna-Godavari (Kadva/Dev) intrastate link projectNWDAThane, MahDamanganga, Vaitarna, GodavariNov 15, 2022For ToRPP withdrawn

In West zone, the EAC considered 14 proposals concerning Dam (1), Barrage (1) Irrigation (3), Lift Irrigation (2), Multipurpose (1), River Linking (1), PSHPs (5) from Maharashtra (7), Madhya Pradesh (4), Rajasthan (2) and Gujarat (1) states of which 4 were considered for ECs including reconsideration and remaining 9 were for ToR including amendments.

Of all considered proposals EC was approved for one Bandra Irrigation project in M.P. and ToR were approved for 7 proposals which includes Chinki Borras Barrage project in MP and Kurha Vadhoda Islampur Lift Irrigation Scheme (LIS) in Maharashtra. The remaining 5 proposals approved for ToR were for PSHPs 3 in Maharashtra and 2 in Rajasthan.

Notably, the EAC on May 31, 2022 decided to constitute a sub-committee to carry out site visit of Lower Orr Dam project under Ken-Betwa Link Project Ph II in Ashoknagar M.P. and mentioned in the minute that MoEF&CC would “initiate necessary action under EP Act, 1986 in view of the start of construction work without obtaining the EC”.

It is worth mentioning that, EAC last year had found the Kurha Vadhoda Islampur LIS completing 60-70% construction activity without prior EC had returned the proposal. The site visit report for ToR of the project was approved on July 29, 2022.

SOUTH INDIA

SNProject Name Capacity (in Mw)DeveloperDistrict/ State  River BasinMeet. DateProposalDecision
1Sitamma Sagar Multi-Purpose Project 320 MwIrrigation and CAD deptBhadradri Kothagudem/ TelanganaGodavari28 Jan. 2022For ToRMore Info. Sought
     31 May 2022For ToRApproved
2Channaka-Korata (Rudha) barrageIrrigation & CAD DeptAdilabad/ TelanganaPenganga/ Godavari08 April 2022For ECPP Absent
     31 May 2022For ECApproved
3Re-engineering of Indiramma Flood Canal projectBaddam Raji Reddy Vs Union of India before the NGTSiddipeta/ TelanganaGodavari15 June 2022Change the scope of flood flow canal & Gouravelli reservoir by increasing the capacity of canals & reservoir from 1.41 to 8.23 TMCAsked to submit the proposal for a fresh ToR under violation category
4Greenko TS02 Off-Stream Closed Loop PSHPWB State Electricity Distribution Company LtdAdilabad/ TelanganaGodavari29 July 2022For ToRWithdrew Application
5Palamuru Rangareddy LIS (Ph II: Irrigation) Mahbubnagr Rangareddy & Nalgonda/ TelanganaKrishna14 Sept. 2022For ECDeferred as project involves violations, need clearances & other issues
6Ranapur Off-Stream Closed Loop PSHP 1200MwSri Siddharth Infratech & Services Pvt LtdNirmal, Adilabad/ TelanganaSwarna/ Godavari11 Oct. 2022For ToRApproved
7Somasila PSHP 900 MwNew and Renewable Energy Development CorpKadapa/ Andhra PradeshPennar09 May 2022For ToRApproved
8Veeraballi PSHP 2720 MwAstha Green Energy Ventures India Pvt. LtdKadapa/ Andhra PradeshMandavi29 July 2022Amendments in ToRApproved
9Vijayanagar PSHP 2×65 MwJSW Renewable EnergyVijayanagar/ KarnatakaTunga-bhadra08 April 2022For ToRApproved
10Saundatti Integrated Renewable Energy with PSHP 1200 MwM/s Greenko Solar Energy Pvt. LtdBelgaum/ KarnatakaGhat-prabha/ Krishna29 July 2022Reconsideration of ECApproved
11Idukki HEP 780 MwKSEBLIdukki/ KeralaPeriyar08 April 2022For ToRPP Absent
     31 May 2022For ToRApproved
12Expansion of Hydro Project from capacity 4X115 MW to 6X115 MW at Lower Sileru Hydro Power House and improvement of power canal worksAPGENCOAlluri Sitaram Raju, APSileru river, tributary of Sabari river in Godavarai basin15 Nov 2022ECMore Info sought

In South Region, the EAC considered 11 proposals from Telangana (6), Andhra Pradesh (2), Karnataka (2) and Kerala (1) states constituting 6 PSHPs, 1 Multi-Purpose Project (Sitamma Sagar, Telangana for ToR on May 31, 2022), 1 Barrage project (Channaka-Korata, Telangana for EC on May 31, 2022), 1 LIS (Palamuru Rangareddy-II, Telangana for EC on Sept. 14, 2022), 1 HEP (Idduki in Kerala for ToR on May 31, 2022).

Of all considered proposals 7 were for ToR of which 6 were approved while application for 1 Greenko TS02 Off-Stream Closed Loop PSHP in Adilabad/ Telangana was withdrawn. 

Out of 3 proposals considered for ECs, 2 were approved including Channaka Korata barrage in Adilabad, Telangana and 1200 Mw Saundatti Integrated Renewable Energy with PSHP in Belagum, Karnataka; the EAC on Sept. 14, 2022 deferred the EC for Palamuru Rangareddy LIS Ph-II in Telangana mentioning that the project involves violations and faces clearances and other related issues.  

Importantly, following the NGT case on re-engineering of Indiramma Flood Canal project in Siddipeta, Telangana which has changed the scope of flood flow and Gouravelli reservoir by increasing the capacity of canals and reservoir from 1.410 TMCs to 8.23 TMCs, the EAC on June 15, 2022 asked the PP to submit the proposal for fresh ToR under violation category.

Summary Form January 12, 2022 to November 30, 2022, the EAC had 16 meetings (two more meetings were held in Dec 2022, whose minutes are not yet out. Once they are out, the decisions in the same will be included here) and considered 41 proposals of which 7 were from North, 3 from North East, 5 from East, 14 from West and 12 from South regions comprised of 9 HEPs, 1 HEP expansion, 4 Multi-purpose dams, 1 Dam, 1 Barrage, 3 Irrigation, 3 Lift Irrigation projects, 1 river link and 12 PSHPs. Out of remaining 6 proposals considered 4 were regarding studies and 2 regarding violations.

During this period, out of the total 41 proposals considered by the EAC, 13 were for EC including extension and reconsideration while 22 proposals were for ToR including amendment of which EC were approved for 5 projects while ToR was approved for 17 proposals.

The EC given to two HEP proposals by EAC are located in Himachal Pradesh (1) and Arunachal Pradesh (1). Interestingly, EAC considered 12 PSHPs (1 for EC and 11 for ToR) in 2022, of which it approved 11 proposals (1 for EC and 10 for ToR).

The date wise link of EAC meetings’ minutes can be seen in table below.

SNDatesMinutes Links
112 Jan. 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/2701202288535590ApprovedMoM22ndEACRVHEPheldon12-1-2021.pdf
228 Jan. 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/2102202281861820ApprovedMoM23rdEACRVHEPheldon28-1-2022.pdf    
322 Feb. 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/1403202295245805DraftMoM24thEACRVHEPheldon22-2-2022.pdf
414 March 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/1204202289407967FinalMoM25thEACRVHEPheldon14-03-2022.pdf    
508 April 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/0105202213620169DraftMoM_26th_EACRVHEP_8-04-2022.pdf    
609 May 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/0206202254316678Draft_minutes_27_EAC_Hydro_9_may_2022.pdf    
731 May 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/2006202238124047FinalMoM_28th_EAC_RVHEP_31-05-2022.pdf    
815 June 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/2806202257406561Finalminutes_29_EAC_River_valley_heldon_15_June_2022.pdf    
901 July 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/1807202262565806Final_minutes_30_EAC_river_1_july_2022.pdf   
1029 July 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/1708202274493316Revised_Draft_Minutes_31_EAC_river_valley_29_July_22_v2.pdf   
1112 Aug. 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/0609202229817290Draft_minutes_32_EAC_12_August_2022_RiverValley.pdf   
1229 Aug. 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/0609202262648832DraftMoM33rdEACRVHEPheldon29_08_2022.pdf
1314 Sept. 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/0410202297296050Final_MOM_34th_River_Valley_14_09_2022.pdf    
1411 Oct. 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/2510202239279546FinalMoM35th_EAC_RIV.pdf
1515 Nov. 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/2911202232005856Final_36th_MoM-_25-11-2022.pdf
1630 Nov. 2022http://environmentclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/Form-1A/Minutes/2012202214518473ApprovedMoM_37_EAC_River_valley_30_Nov_2022.pdf

Forest Clearance The details of various projects including hydro, dam and irrigation considered by FAC for forest clearances in 2022 is given below.

SNProject Capacity (in Mw)DeveloperDistrict/ StateRiver BasinDateProposalDecision
1Standalone Pumped Storage Component of Saundatti Integrated Renewable Energy ProjectGreenko Solar Energy Pvt. Ltd.Belagavi/ KarnatakaGhat-prabha27 Jan. 2022Diversion of 160.4 ha. of forest land in Karlakatti-Chakrageri-Kagihal Villages, Savadatti TalukInfo. Sought
     31 March 2022 More Info. Sought
     13 June 2022 Approved
2Etalin HEP 3097 MwEHEP Company LtdDibang Valley/ Arunachal Pradesh 11 May 2022Diversion of 1165.66 ha (including 91.331 ha underground area) of forest landCommittee constituted to examine the content of representations made against the proposal
     09 Dec. 2022 Deferred for discussion in next meeting
3Sarkula Medium Lift Irrigation ProjectMP WRDShivpuri/ MP 11 May 2022Diversion of 126.42 ha forest landApproved
4Majhagaon Medium Irrigation ProjectMP WRDPanna/ MP 15 July 2022Diversion of 426.763 ha of forest landSome conditions of Stage I FC changed
5Construction of Ash dyke and water reservoirNTPC Ltd.Chatra/ Jharkhand 07 Nov. 2022Proposal for non-forestry use of 10.24 ha of forest landDeclined

The FAC has held 11 meetings from Jan. 27, 2022 to Dec. 09, 2022 and considered 5 proposals pertaining to diversion of forest lands for hydro, dam and irrigation projects in 7 meetings. During this period the FAC has approved 2 proposals, declined approval on 1 proposal, deferred 1 proposal while changed Stage 1 FC for one proposal. The links and details of 7 relevant FAC’s meetings in 2022 can be seen in table below.

SNDateMinute Links
127 Jan. 2022http://forestsclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/FAC_Minutes/21114121312141MoMofFACheldon27-01-2022.pdf
231 March 2022http://forestsclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/FAC_Minutes/4116125112221MoMofFACheldon31-3-2022.pdf   
311 May 2022http://forestsclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/FAC_Minutes/51119123812111MoM.pdf    
413 June 2022http://forestsclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/FAC_Minutes/611171213121811642_1655468956411.pdf  
515 July 2022http://forestsclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/FAC_Minutes/711261219122011642_1658840556190.pdf   
607 Nov. 2022http://forestsclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/FAC_Minutes/111128122612151download.pdf  
709 Dec. 2022http://forestsclearance.nic.in/writereaddata/FAC_Minutes/121122125012161approvedMoMofFAC9-12-22.pdf

Compiled by Bhim Singh Rawat (bhim.sandrp@gmail.com)

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