After bifurcation of the State the new state formed from the present Seemandhra region will have surplus power and can reduce pollution by shelving the proposed expansion of the Narla Tatarao Thermal Power Station (NTTPS), said scientist and convenor of the National Alliance of People’s Movements Andhra Pradesh (NAPM-AP) chapter K Babu Rao.

Speaking at a roundtable conference on the proposal to expand the NTTPS conducted jointly by the NAPM-AP, OPDR and Human Rights Forum here on Monday, Mr Babu Rao said farmers with lands around the Thermal Power Station were unable to raise a second crop because of the heavy pollution from it. The livestock were also becoming unproductive much earlier then in other areas.

The particulate matter in the air was very high in Jupudi village which was down wind to the thermal power station. He said the huge amount of ash being generated was being dumped into ash tanks causing heavy metal pollution of water resources. The heavy metals had a way of accumulating in plants, animals and humans, he said.

When some of the participants raised the question about development, Mr. Babu Rao said that the development and lifestyle being promised by the developed nations was not sustainable. There was a need for the people to go for an alternative lifestyle that involved reduction in wastage of resources. Natural resources were already being over exploited. He said some sections of society were getting “addicted” to wasteful lifestyles, he said.

Other speakers said that the problems of deforestation and import of coal should also be addressed to reduce pollution and environmental degradation.

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