Members of the Kallidalu Ushna Vidyut Stavara Vidoshigala Okkuta submitted a memorandum to Deputy Commissioner S.S. Pattanshetty here on Wednesday stating that the site selected for a 4,000 MW thermal power plant is not suitable as it would cause enormous environmental and health hazard in the surrounding areas.

In the memorandum, the members alleged that the authorities concerned are misguiding the people stating that the site chosen for the plant was barren and unfit for cultivation.

The chosen site and the surrounding areas are best suited for agriculture and horticulture crops and every year, quality betel leaves and onion are exported from these villages.

“Establishing the project would spoil the area in a 10-km radius affecting agriculture and horticulture crops. It would also have an adverse impact on the health of people residing in surrounding areas,” they added.

The members also said that some of the small and medium farmers in Kudgi and surrounding villages are unable to take up proper agriculture activities in their farms owing to lack of irrigation.

If irrigation is provided, they can earn more profits and also contribute to the agriculture income of the region.

In the absence of a facility to stock ash from the plant, there is every possibility that the ash-stored ponds may overflow endangering life in the region. There is also the possibility of acid rain owing to carbon emitted by the plant and this could blacken Gol Gumbaz in the district.

The coal ash contains toxic metals, including mercury, selenium, cadmium and arsenic, that can leach into groundwater and reach a major drinking water source Alamatti Dam posing health hazards, they added.

Before acquiring the land for the plant, the Government and the authorities concerned should study in detail environmental and human health issues, the memorandum said.