Sambalpur, March 22 (Odisha.in) A local water watchdog on Tuesday warned about the possible danger of the thermal power plants Orissa is planning to set up in an attempt to produce 58000 MW power in seven-eight years.
Speaking here on the occasion of ‘World Water Day’ Ranjan Panda, convenor, of ‘Water Initiatives Odisha (WIO)’ said in the last 2-3 years, the state government has signed as many as 27 pacts for generation of thermal power to the tune of 35000 MW.
“The capacity will increase to about 58,000 MW in seven-eight years. To produce the thermal power, the thermal plants would require a minimum of 2297 million cubic meter of water per year” he told ‘Odisha.in’.
“This is enough to meet the domestic water requirement of close to 210 million people. It means about six states of the size of the state’s domestic water requirement” he said. “The rivers, surface water bodies and ground water of the state will be under severe stress if this plan comes to realization” he said.
Orissa is boasting of two digit growth rate. To maintain that more industrialization, through all water guzzling industries like steel, sponge iron, cement, thermal power and mining, will be pushed through with much vigour” he said.
“That means the water demand of the state will surpass the supply much sooner than expected” he said.
“We have argued upon the government to refrain from going for thermal power plant, rather it should invest more on non conventional energy sources” he said.
“We have been also demanding the government to release a white paper on water availability in the state at present as well as in the future taking into account all the sectors” he said.
“If the government does not change its plans, we are surely waiting for a doomed future within a decade or so” he said.