The Goa Coastal Zone Management Authority (GCZMA) has directed the South West Port Ltd (SWPL), a JSW Infrastructure Ltd (JSWIL) group company, to revise Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report for proposed enhancement of the capacity and modernisation of berth 5A-6A of Mormugao Port by considering the issues raised during public hearing against the project.
The two berths 5A and 6A are handling cargo like coal, limestone and steel products. Berth 5A is used for export of steel slabs and steel coils, whereas berth 6A is used for import of coal and limestone.
As the demand for coal and other products is increasing at JSW steel plant in Vijayanagar, the South West Port Ltd (SWPL) has proposed to deploy highly-mechanised and efficient environment-friendly material handling system at both the berths to increase the cargo-handling capacity to meet the demand.
The order came after the authority noted during its 152nd meeting that EIA report was deprived of relevant information and the issue raised during the public hearing, and GCZMA came to the conclusion that the applicant must revise the EIA report as per the public hearing conducted in the matter and then approach the authority.
“We, therefore, direct the project proponent to revisit the EIA report from the stage of public hearing,” the authority said. The GCZMA has received a proposal from M/s South West Port Ltd (SWPL) seeking NOC/ permission for proposed enhancing of the port-handling facility at berth 5A-6A of Mormugao Port.
The project proponent has stated that the implementation of the said project will lead to increase in port efficiency, better utilisation of existing resources and overall net reduction in pollution level due to retrofitting of material handling systems with latest dust entrapment systems and barriers. With the proposal, the expert members of GCZMA Dr Prabhakar Shirodkar and prof Suhas Godse inspected the site and observed that the proposal involving installation of modern, environment-friendly equipment for enhancing the handling capacity of the cargo does not involve any extra space on land or in water front area or any kind of construction within the CRZ area.
It may be noted that the GCZMA had issued NOC in April 2000 to MPT for development and modernisation of berths 4, 5 and 6 which involved utilisation of water front areas as well as foreshore facilities. This NOC was issued based on clause 3 (2) ii of CRZ Notification 1991 and 2011. The team while observing the proposed modernisation plan will reduce pollution to a large extent as well be environmental friendly had recommended the authority to grant the NoC.
The team further stated that the proposed project will enhance the capacity of coal imports to 13 – 14 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) of bulk (coal, iron ore, lime stone dolomite, bauxite, mineral ores and other miscellaneous cargo) and about 2 MTPA of unutilised cargo (steel bars, coils, flats and plates and other steel products).
The project proponent stated that the project is for modernisation and for enhancing the infrastructure of equipment and hence, no new foundation will be laid and there will be no extension of jetty.