NTPC has been granted environment clearance for setting up three coal-based power plants, even before the source of coal has been determined. This runs counter to the ministry's recent directive requiring coal dependent projects to secure environmental and forest clearances for the linked coal block or mine before applying for clearances for the project. However, Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh has cited the importance of these projects in indigenising super-critical technology, as the reason.
The projects will be located in Nabinagar in Bihar, and Sholapur and Mouda in Maharashtra based on super-critical technology. Coal linkages for these projects are yet to receive clearance.