As John Kerry arrives, India extends compliance date for coal plants

Days ahead of US special climate envoy John Kerry’s India visit on upping climate ambitions and a possible carbon neutrality goal, India has brought in rules giving a near 3-year extension to its coal-fired plants to comply with emission norms. As per the Environment (Protection) Amendment Rules (EPAR) of 2015, all thermal power plants in the country were to switch to the Flue Gas Desulphurisation (FGD) system by December 2017.

This deadline was shifted to 2022 after the Supreme Court stepped in. In a new notification issued on April 1, the Union Environment Ministry has announced the Environment (Protection) Amendment Rules, 2021 which extend the timeline for compliance by three years up to December 31, 2025, and has also brought in a graded plan to impose ‘environment compensation’ on entities that are non-compliant. The deadline is stiffer- December 31, 2022 – for thermal plants within 10 km of Delhi-NCR and other cities with a million-plus population and Dec 31, 2023, to Dec 31, 2025, for those within 10 km of critically polluted areas. The remaining thermal plants have time until Dec 31, 2025, to meet the emission norms.


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