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Conditional clearance for Aranmula airport project

Special Correspondent
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‘Consent to Establish’ from Pollution Control Board required

The Union Ministry of Environment and Forests has granted environmental clearance to the proposed Aranmula airport, promoted by the KGS group, subject to specific conditions.

The order issued by the Ministry on Monday specifies that the promoters should obtain “Consent to Establish” from the Kerala Pollution Control Board under the Air and Water Act, besides fulfilling other conditions.

The some of the other conditions are the following:

The proponent should take measures recommended by the Minor Irrigation Department to maintain the riverlet passing through the project areas. (These include improvement of flows of the Kozhithodu, a tributary of the Pampa; minimum filling for infrastructure and periodic desilting of the stream.)

Though the site is not a wetland, in view of the presence of various plants species, the proponent shall fill only a minimum area required for runway, apron, taxiway and the remaining area will be preserved in its natural form as committed. Only the area required for runway 1000X150 m shall be filled to one metre height. The soil required for filling shall be met from an elevated area of about 14.5 acres available within the site. Necessary permission for levelling should be taken.

The State government shall consider the observation of the Legislative Committee on Environment about the de-notification of the excess land except the land under the possession of the KGS Group and apprise the Ministry.

The project proponent shall have a master plan for the project and other related facilities, if any. The terminal building shall incorporate the features of local architecture in and around the area as well as special measures to highlight the Indian antiquity. The land use around the airport complex shall be regulated.

Legal action

Legal action shall be initiated against the project proponent if it was found that construction of the project has been started without obtaining environmental clearance.

The project proponent will set up separate environmental management cell for effective implementation of the stipulated environmental safeguards.

The order says that the proponent should follow various rules and norms regarding treatment of sewage and liquid effluent and solid waste management. It also specifies energy conservation measures.

The Ministry has also stipulated general conditions regarding norms to be following during the construction phase, including facilities for workers, proper disposal of muck, use of water and machinery, quarrying, noise reduction and effluent treatment.

Any appeal against this environmental clearance shall lie with the National Green Tribunal.


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