Environmental nod for Reliance drilling

RAJAHMUNDRY, NOV. 29. Reliance Industries has been given the environmental clearance for exploratory drilling in its KG-III-6 offshore block in the Krishna-Godavari basin by the Minister for Environment and Forests. The Rs. 800-crore project envisages drilling of eight wells.

Company sources said this was the second block for which RIL had obtained environmental clearance and where a rig was placed. RIL had already begun drilling operations in the first block in the KG basin.

According to a recent notification of the Ministry of Environment and Forests, the project did not require a public hearing, but it would be subject to strict compliance of a host of specific and general conditions. The project was granted a no objection certificate by the Andhra Pradesh Pollution Control Board on August 10.

Reliance has been asked to communicate the schedule for the start of drilling operations, at least, one month in advance to the Wildlife Warden having jurisdiction over the nearest coastal area for monitoring any impact on wild life and to obtain prior approval of the DG Shipping under the Merchant Shipping Act.

According to the notification, the company has to provide for adequate infrastructure facilities near the offshore installations to facilitate deployment of booms and skimmers/chemical dispersants in case of oil leakage.

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