New Delhi: For not utilising ash generated from its thermal projects completely, the Supreme Court has stayed the heavy penalties levied by the National Green Tribunal (NGT) on the National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC). The SC asked the tribunal to hear the power producer’s side of the argument before taking action. The tribunal in November had imposed hefty fines, ranging from Rs 1 crore to Rs 5 crore, on a few thermal projects of NTPC for having not completely utilised the fly ash they generated as per the norms laid out by the environment ministry in January 2016.
NTPC had contested the charges, saying that the tribunal did not take into consideration the reluctance of user industries like cement plants, to take fly ash from power plants. To complete 100 percent utilisation of fly ash, the environment ministry’s 2016 notification had made it mandatory on user industries to take fly ash from thermal power plants. On the same issue, the SC order will apply to an appeal filed by MP Power Gen Co Ltd.
What is the other side of the story?
The power companies had submitted before the court that power plants cannot compel user industries to take fly ash from them but can just assist in the transportation of fly ash to them. NTPC has been transporting fly ash to user industries free of cost till a distance of 300 km, a senior executive said.
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