Odisha State Pollution Control Board (OSPCB) has predicted that fly ash generation may even touch 150 million ton per annum if all installed and proposed thermal power plants go into full capacity production.

An in-depth study titled ‘Fundamentals of Fly Ash and its Management in Odisha’ which was released here on Tuesday, the forecast annual generation of ash may increase to about 150 mtpa if ash-contained coal increase up to 50 per cent. It cautions that fly ash utilisation will pose a major challenge for the State.

The book was authored by R. N. Senapati, former Chairman of SPCB, Sidhant Das, former SPCB Member Secretary and A. K. Swar, board’s senior environmental engineer.

About 30 thermal power plants, including captive power plants having total installed capacity of about 11,400 mw capacities, are operating in the State consuming about 52 mtpa coal containing ash content more than 40 per cent, the study says.

It says consent to establish for installation of 17 thermal power plants of installed capacity of 15,624 mw has been given by the SPCB, Odisha.

Further 17 thermal power plants have submitted consent to establish applications to the SPCB, Odisha, for installed capacity of 22845 mw and applications are under process.

Of these units, Sterlite Energy Limited (2400 mw), Jharsuguda, Jindal Stainless Limited (270 mw), Kalinga Nagar and Bhushan Energy Limited (300 mw), Dhenkanal with combined capacity of 2,970 mw have started production.

MoU signed

The State government has signed MoU with 30 independent power plants.

All these thermal power plants have been allowed with a mandate to meet the power needs of the State and country.

“Considering 40 per cent ash content in coal, the fly ash generation in the State is likely to increase by more than five times, from the current level of 24 million ton per annum to 127 in future if all the proposed projects (49159 mw) are installed in addition to the existing installed capacity of about 11400 mw and thereby the total coal-based thermal power generation capacity may reach about 60,559 mw in the State,” SPCB’s senior environmental engineer said.