CSE experts answer the questions raised during the webinar

COAL-BASED POWER NORMS: Where do we stand?

The questions (and their answers) have been listed according to the alphabetical order of the names of people who asked them.Questions from anonymous attendees have been listed at the end of the sections.

For any further queries, you can reach out to soundaram@cseindia.org, vinay.trivedi@cseindia.org


A K M Humayan Kabir Dewan

Q 1: We are going to construct a 2*660 MW Ultrasuper Critical Coal Power plant based on imported bituminus coal form Indonesia. But now days Mercury emission is one of the hot topics in this matter .So, can you provide what type of guideline or norms should be followed for this matter?

Ans: In India and China the allowed mercury emission from coal-based thermal power station is 0.03 ppb. In USA it is about 0.003 ppb.

Q 2: My question is that what will be the best option for Ash pond /dyke management in coal power plant

Ans: Guidelines for ash pond/dyke management are already clearly defined by the government, the main issue remain the actual implementation of guidelines.



Ahmad Faraz

Q 1: I think most of the people are unaware pollution caused by coal mine. Is there no need to aware the public about this important topic?

Ans: There is of course need. At the Centre for Science and Environment we have been writing and communicating with people on this important issue. We also conduct training workshop to create multiple voices who can communicate this important issue to further more people.



Ajit Apte

Q 1: Has CSE conducted any study about coal storage in silos in place of open storage

Ans: CSE has not conducted study specific to coal storage in silos.



Amarjeet Singh

Q 1: Does CSE done any simulation of air pollution control thru Carbon Sequestration and Utilisation technologies to mitigate the increase in tariff due to FGD/new pollution norms by generation revenue from sale of biofuel/ethanol/methanol?

Ans: No yet, we are a policy research organisation. Our scope of work has largely been analysing policy which are announced.

Q 2: 100% flyash utilising since pond ash mgmt. consume lot of water mandatory mixing of flyash in redbrick making mandatory mixing of flyash in filling material in NHAI highways mandatory mixing of flyash in RMC plants?

Ans: Government had already directed power plant to ensure 100 per cent utilization flyash. Flyash can be utilize in various sector. However, making use of flyash mandatory in various sector need specific research and guidelines as per the sector requirement.

Q 3: CSE need to study on conversion of old coal TPP located in 1 million plus population cities of India into W2E plant using local MSW and wheat/paddy crop residue under international competitive bidding route since this will help mitigate MSW management along with generate extra income to farmers as well keep such old TPP more useful.

Ans: This is an interesting concept emerged globally to utilize old power stations. CSE is doing research in this field and will come out with some concrete recommendations soon.

Q 4: Micro algae to biofuel technology can be explored to converting flue gas into ethanol/methanol along with control air pollution as well revenue generation to compensate for investment in air pollution equipment

Ans: We need to study this concept in details. We will get back to you to discuss more on this.

Q 5: Badarpur plant could have converted into MSW plant since Delhi produced 10000 TPD MSW and only 50% are being only treated in existing 2 W2E plants of JSW and Ramky.

Ans: We will discuss with the relevant stakeholders over the possibility.

Q 6: without tariff mitigation measured inbuilt due to competitive power market of India no adoption of pollutions will be adopted by Indian TPP.

Ans: Tariff pass-through has been allowed. Regulators are currently working on mechanisms to collect the same from DISCOMS.



Android Bluedroid

Q 1: By imposing stringent norms are we not discouraging the Coal based power projects, increasing the cost of setting and operation of power plants. Development and environment to be balanced.
Whether indigenous manufacturers are capable to design the equipment’s competitively to meet costs comparable to competitors?

Ans: Our norms have become tighter but it still can't be said most stringent when we compare with other countries. Secondly, cheap electricity for development does not mean it put health burden on the population in the form of pollution which we are spewing from decades. We need to define a balance between development and environment and that is why the norms were decided by MoEFCC with due consideration of age and size of the plant. Renewable energy projects will never get attention unless we ensure cheap and dirty coal should be burnt with due consideration on public health.CSE does not compare equipment manufacture however, it can said that Indian manufacturers have done well in most of the areas and it’s the high time to promote 'Make in India' aggressively in the field of pollution control technologies.

Q 2: Thermal plants provides lot of employment compared to RE projects.

Ans: Presently we have far from reeling our actual RE potentials. When you look RE from holistic perspective, solar, wind, and including biomass, the quantum of employment generation will be enormous



Anupam Chatterjee

Q 1: Does Indian coal, with low sulfur content, require expensive mandates like FGDs, or should the govt push for more coal washing to reduce emissions?
With a huge part of the country, especially the eastern zone, deeply reliant on coal based economy, doesn't the environment issue begets the tough choice of starving today vs choking tomorrow?
Due to the contractual structure of power agreements, any push towards cleaner technology or green energy raises the tariff for end users. The country's residential tariff is one of the lowest, but on PPP basis, it is among the highest in the world. What are the options to tackle this challenge?

Ans: There is no one solution to it currently. Coal washeries sector has not picked up well and will require time to develop and establish itself. In such a scenario, having FGDs could be the best available solution. Several studies have demonstrated the cost benefits of FGD are much greater than installing an FGD itself.



Arun Kumar Dwivedi

Q 1: What is the useful life of a thermal power plant? Are we doing the life cycle analysis and life cycle cost analysis of thermal power plant especially the plant which are based on older technology?

Ans: Design life of thermal power stations is 25 years. LCOE is not calculated for tariff purposes by regulators.



Aruna Thigulla

Q 1: can you explain about ash utilisation measures.

Ans: you can refer to 'Heat on Power' by CSE to get an overview and you can also check Central Electricity authority reports on flyash utilization (http://www.cea.nic.in/tcd.html).



Avinash Pareek

Q 1: Most of the TPP's in the nation and major Steel Plants consuming COAL were working in LOCKDOWN period also.... Blue skies aren't seemingly due to TPP's and Steel plants. Please elaborate.

Ans: Pollutant levels did not drop to 0. The organized sectors like TPP or steel plant does contribute to the environmental pollution. But it is due to the restricted movement of vehicles and shutdown of operations of most of the small and medium scale industries that the pollution in the ambient environment reduced significantly.

Q 2: BTPS TPP was closed ...Ash from POND is not converted in to Fly Ash Bricks.Since December 2018. Does you put Fly Ash dumping in to Highways and Low Lying areas above mfr. of Fly Ash Bricks on one hand and on other Hand Saving of Top Soil. NO ASH for Fly Ash Products.

Ans: In an ideal case flyash use by various sector should be done based on the quality of ash. Actual utilization on field varies, due to large amount of flyash generation and limited demand. Presently, quantum of flyash is so huge, different methods needs to prioritise and judiciously taken as areawise demand to address the flyash problem.



Awkash Kumar

Q 1: Fly Ashpond has been regulated for new proposed plants. What about old plants they has no provision for fly ash pond?

Ans: The guidelines for flyash are similar to every plant irrespective to its age. There is no provision as on date to manage on fly ash pond design/maintenance from PCBs.



Biju I K

Q 1: What is the CO2 emission factor from the power sector?

Ans: About, 1 kg of carbon dioxide is emitted on burning 1 kg coal depending on the quantity, quality of coal used and efficiency of the plant.



Bipul Verma

Q 1: What is the progress in power generation from alternative sources than coal based?

Ans: In the last three years 70 per cent of the new generation capacities added to the grid are renewable. You can get more details in the link https://www.downtoearth.org.in/blog/energy/renewable-capacity-additions-exceed-new-coal-in-india-67269



Deepak R

Q 1: who can participate in bidding for how much minimum quantity?

Ans: Question unclear. We will reach out to you on your email to seek clarity.



Dr. Vijai Singhal

Q 1: what about the mercury in fly ash besides emissions in air?We should have norms for mercury for stack emissions also.

Ans: Fly ash is ultimately used in construction industry, predominantly as binder like cement. Studies have shown that the alkaline nature of Cement immbolises mercury in fly ash. Meaning mercury is struck along with other alkalis in fly ash and it is difficult to leach or vaporise or oxidise into the atmosphere. You can find more details at https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0304389412001239.



Emergency Person

Q 1: The study seems to have covered all major pollutants. Are there ary observations on how efficiently our power plants use land? This is relevant especially in the context of the observations made w r t on retrofitting older plants Dr M.R Anand (Former EA M/o Coal?)

Ans: The Central Electricity Authority (CEA) suggests using 0.44 ha per MW of capacity. CSE data collected between 2011 and 2015 found that the plants possessed far more, using an average of 0.72 hectares/MW, of which over 40 per cent was used for disposing ash; old state-owned plants used nearly four times more area per MW than private plants. If land used for coal mining, water reservoirs and ash ponds is added to this, a 1,000 MW plant would use about 8,800 ha over its life, a figure that dwarfs land use for all technologies except hydropower.


Er(Mr) K K Roy Chowdhury Chowdhury

Q 1: what are your views to facilitate utilisation of power station wastes use of fly ash, fgd waste in Cement plants?- kk.roy@cmaindia.org

Ans: Both flyash and FGD gpysum is an important resource for the cement industry. Cement and power plants are already collaborating to address this ensuring mutual co-benefits. We have been facilitating the same through policy advocacy by pushing thermal power plants to utilize 100 per cent flyash and FGD gyspum in the cement industry and other industry.



Jayanta Topadar

Q 1: Respected Madam, Can’t we all Indians go for a Signature Campaign in Support of the Valuable CSE Report?

Ans: Good suggestion. Thanks



Jayesh Vyas

Q 1: The analysis of Hg for TPS is not carried out by many SPCBs; what are the reasons and how these can be tackled?

Ans: The SPCBs regularly monitor thermal power station emissions on quarterly/monthly basis for 3 basic parameters – PM SO2, and NOX. They should ideally analyse Hg also, but are not doing it. CSE has recommended the same through this report.

Q 2: Why are we afraid of NP plants? As if we take all needed safety measures it can be made safe.

Ans: Question unclear. We will reach out to you on your email to seek clarity.

Q 3: For NOx it is necessary to follow the revised method for collection and analysis of samples; all TPS are not doing this and so the data of NOx conc. will be incorrect. What can be done to rectify this?

Ans: Question unclear. We will reach out to you on your email to seek clarity.



Jitendra Gavali

Q 1: Coal excavation and forest protection, biodiversity laws etc are in conflicts. How to make those protection laws functional? In the name of requirements, govt always put forests at stake, in fact they are rejuvenating water and soil. So what should be our priority?

Ans: Our resources - coal and other minerals are mostly under forestland. There is always a dilemana, however growth agenda also cannot be sidelined. So a balanced approach by identifying prime areas of forest and conserving the same, on diversion of forest it must be ensured an alternate area for forestation has been identified and forestation be carried out there.



Karl Karkaria

Q 1: In your opinion, is the quality of Indian coal an impediment to comply with the proposed NOx norms?

Ans: No. Our discussions with manufacturers like BHEL, and other experts we feel quality of Indian coal is not an impediment to comply with the proposed NOx norms.

Q 2: Do you expect norms on carbon emissions to be introduced in the future?

Ans: Currently we don't foresee carbon norms. COP commitments are now bottom-up, so at this moment we don't anticipate. However, there are discussions happening to co-fire biomass waste in coal power stations which could potentially reduce CO2 emissions. Also PAT schemes gives targets to improve station heat rate in power stations. BEE is handling the PAT scheme. Closing old power stations can also overall increase the efficiency of Indian coal fleet, because most old power stations are inefficient. CSE is working to support implementation of these policy measures.



Kaushlendra Kumar

Q 1: As plant's become old, the risk of damage/loss increases. What are the major risks faced by Power Generating companies which are can be Covered by taking insurance policies and which cannot be covered by insurance policies.
Also, what are the risk mitigation approach followed by these units?

Ans: Normally we understand from experts working with Coal power stations that they don't take insurance on the components. However there is a legal requirement under the Public Liability Insurance Act for the power station to cover any loss to public living in the surrounding area.



Kazuyuki Murakami

Q 1: I agree the overall observation and views you've presented. I would like to know, if I may, how it is going with your interactions with the relevant ministries and institutions to expedite that utilities and their power plants would comply with the Norms in time

Ans: The ministry and the government is taking the best measures possible to push implementation of the norms.



Kerim Sert

Q 1: What kind of projects or strategies CSE has to push the government to implement cleaner technologies?

Ans: A CSE is working with the stakeholders who are directly involved in the implementation of the norms. We are attempting to understand the road blocks and solutions by discussing with experts, we further take it to relevant authorities for their intervention and seek policy solution.



Ketan Jawney

Q 1: Modern ESP limit as said is 25mg/m3, Can I know the size specific collection limit as Particulate matter (airborne) is the major problem for India. Power Plant contributing how much to PM emission?

Ans: Proportionate contribution of Pollution to air varies widely across India. In Singrauli the pollution in ambient air is much higher than it could be in Delhi due to the sheer volume. So it would not be appropriate to do a pan-India analysis in this case. However in terms of pollution load amongst industries - nearly half of the sulphur dioxide emissions, Particulate matter, 1/3rd of NOx, and over 80 per cent of mercury is from coal-power stations. Cleaning coal power stations can significantly reduce the industrial pollution load in the country.



Kumar Pavadai

Q 1: As per Supreme Court order the NOx limit will be relaxed from 300 to 450 mg/Nm3?

Ans: The MoP requested MoEF&CC for the dilution of the NOx norms. The MoEF&CC, CPCB, and EPCA - the Supreme Court committee in-principle agreed to the dilution provided the power stations comply with the deadlines for the other parameters. No notification so far has been issued by the CPCB on this dilution. You can find more details in our report https://www.cseindia.org/70-of-coal-fired-power-stations-may-not-meet-environmental-norms-10126.



Lavanya Padhi

Q 1: According to Mina Mata convention, mercury emission need to be checked by power plant? Is there any reason they do not measure? Or this issue not addressed?

Ans: True. India ratified Mina Mata convention in 2018. We believe they are in the phase of setting protocols for implementing the same.



Lesley Sloss

Q 1: Hi, Excellent talk - I look forward to reading the report. Do you have any information on the status of the installation of monitoring systems for SO2, NOx, and mercury on the Indian coal fleet? Do any plants have monitors installed? Are there any training schemes in India on how to carry out quality control on these monitors?

Ans: SO2 and NOx monitors are compulsory, so every power station in India have them installed. Mercury however is not mandated as it is expensive. Still few stations might have mercury analysers also - we have observed one in Rattan India Power Station Amaravati, Maharashtra. Quality control has been recently developed by NPL. Currently NPL might be in the phase of developing training schemes on how to carry out quality control on these monitors.



Madhukar Kotwal

Q 1: Whereas meeting the parameters given by you is crucial in terms of maintaining the environment, don’t you think that for around 2 years these will unfortunately take a back seat due to the urgency of reviving the economy? What should be done to prevent such a situation?

Ans: Ideally it should not. Power being an essential commodity is likely to see massive changes in revenue. In-fact upgrading these stations could give rise to more opportunities which can help in reviving small and medium scale industries who will support the power stations to install FGD as suppliers of various components.

Q 2: What are the specific actions recommended to deal with the high ash containing coal the use of which appears to be unavoidable?

Ans: The only solution is to have an effective and upgraded Electrostatic precipitator which can capture high dust loads that originate due to high ash content in coal. Also, with FGD in place it can further reduce the PM levels.

Q 3: Is it true that the requirement of washing coal is going to be diluted? What will be the consequence?

Ans: Yes. There will be increase in carbon dioxide emissions due to transport of high volumes of coal. The size of the dust control systems will need to be increased to remove higher percentage of fly ash in coal.



Manoj Lohakare

Q 1: We want to clear the whether norms of SO2& NOx are also applicable to Coal based boilers which are used for process stream. If yes so what is the norms for it

Ans: According to the definition of Environment Protection Act, 1986 it is applicable to thermal power stations. Standard for process steam boiler are given separtely by CPCB based on their tonne per hour capacity and fuel usage.



MNV Prasad

Q 1: Are there any plants making by-products like FGD gypsum?

Ans: You can refer to our online report on FGD and Limestone available on CSE website www.cseindia.org

Mr. Rohit Kedar

Q 1: What are the plans of Govt. to promote solar? From last 1.5 year there is no subsidy available

Ans: Several schemes such as Pradhan Mantri Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthan Mahabhiyan Yojana (PM-KUSUM), CPSU (Government Producers) Scheme - Phase II and Solar Rooftop Phase II program aimed at the improvement of the generation as well as the adoption of solar energy in the country have been introduced.



Naini Swami

Q 1: Wanted to know if there are any Court interventions for more timely and stringent implementations of these norms?

Ans: If power stations miss the deadline or miss to deposit the penalty - there is a possibility to petition at the Court.

Q 2: Compliance with these norms seems quite poor and now a slew of around 50 new mines has been announced by the FM, along with a move for privatisation in coal mining. So, why is CSE then not stressing on a movement towards coal ban and to move towards renewable sources?

Ans: CSE is working to enable smoother transition to renewable. We have a separate team working on policies promoting renewable energy. Significant investments have gone into the coal sector and fast transformation will be difficult. However please note in the last three years 70 per cent of the new generation capacities added to the grid are renewable. Coal is gradually declining, you can get more details in the link https://www.downtoearth.org.in/blog/energy/renewable-capacity-additions-exceed-new-coal-in-india-67269



Neel Kamal

Q 1: Germany is opening a new coal power plant this summer to be run by Finnish state-owned Fortum. Swedish state-owned Vattenfall is already operating new coal plants in Germany. German government has decided to stick to coal until 2038, if the deadline of 2022 of putting FGD at coal fired plants is not met, then what in India?

Ans: We understand that Germany initially had a deadline of 2030 to phase out coal which has now been extended to 2038. Thanks for the update over the new coal power plant in Germany. We will stay in touch with you to understand the updates. In India, if coal-based thermal power stations do not meet the norms strict penalty measures will be enforced. We at the moment are working with stakeholders to identify the measures. The most widely recommended measure being downgrading the plants in the Merit order dispatch system and inducing a competition between the plants to start/complete the construction at the earliest.

Q 2: It seems the coal based thermal plants only want to buy time but are not going to fulfil 'Flue-gas desulfurization' norms. One public sector power plant has already shut operations due to it in Punjab and half of the units of another public sector plant have been permanently closed. The three private sector thermal plants seems non-committal on the count. My questions is will government really act tough or it just want to provide time, if plants not comes up with fulfilling norms where stand we as a nation in containing environmental de gradation.

Ans: Environment Compensation of about Rs 18 lac a month for each non-compliant parameter, these violating power stations which you have mentioned will have to pay by June 5, 2020 to CPCB. We are tracking the updates on this order which was recently issued by CPCB to these stations. We will keep you updated on the follow-ups.

Q 3: As per sub section 5 of the section 6.2 of revised tariff policy of union power ministry notified on January 28, 2016 pertaining to tariff structuring and associated issues, the thermal plants located within 50 kilometre radius of sewerage treatment plant of municipality/local bodies or similar organisation shall in the order of their closeness to the sewerage treatment plant, mandatorily use treated sewerage water produced by these bodies and the associated cost on this account be allowed as a pass through in the tariff. Such thermal plants may also ensure back up source of water to meet their requirement in the event of shortage of supply by the sewerage treatment plant. The associated cost on this account shall be factored into the fixed cost so as not to disturb the merit order of such thermal plant, this is not happening, what solution?

Ans: Wastewater use is happening in a few power stations in a radius of 50 km around the cities for example Koradi thermal power station. Currently cost of water is allowed for recovery as part of fixed cost. You can also refer to our story https://www.downtoearth.org.in/news/energy/sewage-power-52882



Pankaj Verma

Q 1: Recently Storage based Renewable energy has come to equal to themral power plant tariff...why not to stop thermal power plant in future. Please provide your input

Ans: Renewable energy capacity addition rate has shown a growing trend in the past few years and coal based capacity addition rate has slowed down, however, such huge transition cannot happen on a fast track basis as India is currently highly dependent on coal. Better policy initiaves favoring renewables and discouraging coal can bring huge reforms in the sector.



Paul Baruya

Q 1: Thanks, are there measures to raise electricity tariffs to finance pollution control retrofits? (Paul Baruya - IEA Clean Coal Centre, London)

Ans: Yes. We are awaiting CERC's white paper on tariff mechanism to pass through the pollution retrofit costs to customers. You can find more details on it at https://www.downtoearth.org.in/news/energy/reliance-gets-cerc-nod-to-spend-rs-1-663-crore-on-device-to-reduce-pollution-70784



Piyush Sharma

Q 1: we can see that EU, China, etc, has further lower emission norms. Why India cannot have such low norms. Is the technology responsible for this or is it the quality of coal.

Ans:Techno-economically implementation of the current norms can bring down pollution levels substantially. On further tightening like the Western world there is benefits however those are marginal in comparison to the investments they require. Given we are making efforts to move away from coal at the earliest, we are supporting the implementation of the current norms which is techno-economically more sensible.



Polash Mukerjee

Q 1: Given that the law (Air Act, Environment Act) already contains measures for non-compliance but remains widely unimplemented, how can we ensure that accountability is fixed, and non-action is penalised? Can associated health costs of non-compliance be recovered, to act as a deterrent?

Ans: Concerted efforts are required to address this issue. We are working on a paper to fix accountability and to address non-compliance in thermal power sector. We will have stakeholder consultation on the same.

Incorporation all the externalities (environmental or health) for non-compliance is a complex issue. However, more studies are now available which should be used to include health cost of non-compliance to act as deter.



Pradip Pradip

Q 1: What about ash - input and output. Do we have data how much unburnt carbon is there collected in the ash - is there any data available. This is important since ash limits in the coal being burnt in the power plants in India, are being relaxed

Ans: Coal power station strive to reduce their unburnt carbon limits in ash because it adds cost to them. Unburnt carbon in coal power plants are below 100 ppm of fly ash in general.



Pramod Suri

Q 1: the recentproposed notification of MOEF stopping washing of coal (overruling its earlier directive of transporting washed coal with34% ash for all power plants at500 km away) will further increase the PM and other pollutants compared to what it is today.

Ans: Final notification on 21st May, 2020 has allowed power plants to use unwashed coal irrespective of distance from the mine.

Q 2: what does CSE feel about this?

Ans: CSE believes thermal power plants are already in non-compliance with new environment norms and implementation of flyash notification, the use of unwashed coal will make the situation worse, if such non-compliance continues. Thus, power plants should be held accountable to meet these norms immediately.

Q 3: Should we not discontinue washing of the coal?

Ans: There is no one solution to it currently. Coal washeries sector has not picked up well and will require time to develop and establish itself. In such a scenario, having FGDs could be the best available solution. Several studies have demonstrated the cost benefits of FGD are much greater than installing an FGD itself. However it does not mean we should discontinue washing coal. By transporting washed coal there is lesser stress on the transportation network - GHG emissions, cost of transport are reduced. One can't ban the coal washeries because FGD is in-place or ban the FGD because coal washeries are in-place. They have different benefits and can co-exist to cater at different levels to customers, say a power station located 1500 km away it makes economic sense to procure coal with 33% ash content and design a smallerFGD small for treating sulphur dioxide emission depending on Sulphur content in coal. Washing coal necessarily doesn't low sulphur content significantly - emissions of around 500mg/N.cu.m is possible. The norms are 200 mg/N.cu.m.

Q 4: since Indian coal is high in ash, don’t you think that govt. should not stop washing of coal to reduce ash content?

Ans: Yes, we support your argument.



Prashant Kokil

Q 1: Can the presentation of Ms Soundaram be shared please.

Ans: The report, PPTS and recordings will be uploaded here- https://www.cseindia.org/coal-based-power-norms-10123

Q 2: Why not recalibrate the observations in the report on the basis of AAQ as observed during lockdown as thermal power plants were operational while other industries and vehicular emission contributions were at the minimum.

Ans: During lockdown period, many studies have shown a drastic reduction in PM and NOx as industries and vehicles contribution is minimum but SO2 levels have not gone down that much mainly in hot spot regions where power plants were operating as power plants contribute substantially to SO2 emissions load.



Pratibha Singh

Q 1: Why SOx and NOx are different during different years

Ans: Question unclear. We will reach out to you on your email to seek clarity.

Q 2: Why mercury monitoring is not going on?

Ans: The SPCBs regularly monitor thermal power station emissions on quarterly/monthly basis for 3 basic parameters - PM,SO2, and NOX. They should ideally analyse Hg also, but are not doing it. CSE has recommended the same through this report.



Qian Zhu

Q 1: What about India's commitment to CO2 emissions reduction? What are the policies for TPP efficiency requirement?

Ans: There are discussions happening to co-fire biomass waste in coal power stations which could potentially reduce CO2 emissions. Also PAT schemes gives targets to improve station heat rate in power stations. BEE is handling the PAT scheme. Closing old power stations can also overall increase the efficiency of Indian coal fleet, because most old power stations are inefficient. CSE is working to support implementation of these policy measures.



Rahul Khanna

Q 1: When will be able to see renewable energy transformation in India?

Ans: We are slowly transitioning to renewable energy. We anticipate to witness a reasonable shift to RE by 2050 or before through all our efforts.



Rajiv Aundhe

Q 1: For NOx - do standards specify Ultra low NOx burners?

Ans: Yes to meet the standard of 300 mg/N.cu.m, ultra-low NOxburners are also a solution.

Q 2: Can u share the PPT?

Ans: PPT will be uploaded here- https://www.cseindia.org/coal-based-power-norms-10123



Ravinder Yadav

Q 1: apart from gypsum, co2 also emitted at larger quantity. Doesn’t it hamper the India's commitment (INDC Paris Agreement?)

Ans: The annual installation of coal based power is on the decline. As renewable energy is becoming more and more competitive, our government is pushing for renewable energy projects. We believe with concerted efforts for cleaner sources of energy, we will be on track to achieve our INDC target.

Q 2: For overall Indian thermal power sector, last year plf was around 67%. We have seen that some more efficient units (sub critical or supercritical) are either failed to get PPA or lying idle. Is it possible that we ensign some other stringent efficiency based norms (based on GOHR) with these proposed environment norms.

Ans: Efficiency norms are already defined by BEE to TPPs. Electricity Regulatory Commission also approve payment to the plant only if it meets the required efficiency.



Reena Bajpai

Q 1: Why can't we use solar energy?As India has good source of sunlight

Ans: We are using solar energy. The transition is happening.



Sarthak Soni

Q 1: Please shed some light on recent Ash-pond linkage in Singrauli, Madhya Pradesh?? Who is responsible for the same from legal view point? Who is responsible to reclaim the land that is affected? What are the penalty provisions to punish the responsible? Can't the NGT or HCs or SC can take suo-moto cognizance of such happenings?

Ans: The Company is responsible for the ash spillage from legal point of view and the company is responsible. NGT can take it up suo-motto. Since already there are host of cases which are happening at the NGT over the pollution in Singrauli area, the lawyers in the region took it to NGT pro-actively. NGT had order over Rs 200 Cr compensation. However the company has challenged this order and the case is now pending at the Supreme Court.

Q 2: India having lowest standards of coal which is used in TPP, wouldn't the coal exporting countries will be taking the advantage of this and dumping low quality coal in India?

Ans: It is true that India has lowest quality of coal in comparison to other country. However, India's thermal power plants monitor their coal quality carefully since the price of coal is directly correlated to quality of coal. It is matter of their profitability, thus, they ensure quality of imported coal.



Satyanarayana Cheerla

Q 1: How to dispose of the solid waste from FGD plant. Many Power plants are hesitant to handle solid waste from FGD plants?

Ans: Details on how to management of FGD waste is available in this report https://www.cseindia.org/content/downloadreports/10043.

Q 2: FGD Gypsum is not truly Gypsum. You have to find out ways for its uses.What are your suggested plans for technology for CO2reduction? Or lesser GHG reduction per MW. For what penalties you suggest for each lapse in whole gamut of Env.Protection and power generation.

Ans: Research studies say with good quality limestone input in wet limestone FGD, the quality of FGD gypsum produced is similar to natural gypsum. FGD gypsum is already being used in various sectors like construction in China and plasterboard/gypsum in USA. Its use in agriculture as a fertilizer is also propagated but with certain caveats.

Suggested plants for CO2 reduction
1. All the new units are supercritical units and ultra-supercritical.
2. Improve efficiency of existing sub-critical fleet
2. Shut old and inefficient plants
4. Biomass co-firing



Shripad Dharmadhikary

Q 1: Change in merit order dispatch - are you suggesting that plants pushed out of the merit order stack due to non-compliance with norms will not also be paid fixed costs?

Ans: Yes, for now Electricity regulatory commission are proposing fixed cost also be not paid to plants which don't meet the standards. We are preparing a detailed list of various options available which can discourage non-compliance.



Subhasish Das

Q 1: Apart from the toxic gas load, coal based thermal power plants also spew lot of ash. This ash is also harmful when just unloaded into the soil environment. Whether the CSE has thought on that context? This could also be added as a suggestion from CSE to the Government.

Ans: CSE has not study specific to soil environment, however, overall impaclt of flyash are covered in our report, 'Heat on Power'.



Sugandha Jayaswal

Q 1: By product based power plant in specific sector industries should get some subsidy from the government. Your views on this.

Ans: Biomass based thermal power plants which are based on by-product are already been provided with capital subsidy by the government.



SV Chaitanya

Q 1: Thermal power plants are guzzling lot of fresh water...for instance Thamarabarani river water is diverted to Thoothukudi power plant even when there was huge drinking water shortage...shouldn't such plants be closed to install desal plants?

Ans: Thermal Power Plants along the coast of Gujarat has installed desal plants. Now that these stations are installed, making sure they meet the water norms can still help in reducing their water footprint.

Q 2: Ash utilisation is very low. In Ennore near Chennai, Buckingham canal was filled with fly ash. Though NGT had directed the power plants to remediate the area, no action is taken.

Ans: This is major issues across the India. Power plants fails to develop sufficient linkages to utilize flyash. NGT may fine the plant if directions are not followed. 
Overall flyash utilization is gradually improving but still lot more to be done to address this flyash menace.



Valluri Avinash

Q 1: Indian Govt. is not in position to care about these emissions and citizens too and now COVID-19 will pave way to escape these emissions norms as Govt. are not ready to interfere during these conditions?

Ans: We hope the scenario doesn't turn too gloomy. We will continue our efforts to pushfor implementation of the new norms.



Vidyanand Motghare

Q 1: Which state is complyingwith implementation of new norms?

Ans: We have did surveys in five states - Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab, Maharashtra, and Madhya Pradesh. In terms of PM and NOx, we observe similar pattern over 50 percent of the stations are meeting with the PM and NOx norms. However in terms of FGD installation post 2015 norm announcement, both the state and private sector power stations are lagging behind.

Q 2: Whether dry or wet FGD is recommended practically in India?

Ans: It depends on the life of the plant, water and raw material availability. For smaller size power plants usually both dry and wet FGD options are considered. However for large size power stations wet-FGDs/partial wet FGDs are preferred.

Q 3: Is discussion going on scrapping of 34% ash content limit in MoEF?

Ans: Final notification on 21st May, 2020 has allowed power plants to use unwashed coal irrespective of distance from the mine.




Q 1: Isn't it that private sector's involvement will further disturbs the situation?

Ans: Not clear



Vinothkumar Palanisamy

Q 1: Dear Sir / Madam, This is Vinoth from Tamil Nadu we are taken a trial to reduce NOX level in AFBC boiler with help of Aqueous Urea. I want to know, what is the allowed residual ammonia in the flue gas exit?

Ans: Presently, there is no residual ammonia standards for thermal power plants.



Vipul Patel

Q 1: Why we are not thinking for nuclear energy?

Ans: With Fukushima disaster there is a general push back for nuclear energy.

Q 2: What will the possibility to use petcocks for energy generation by proposal mixing with lime?

Ans: Pet coke is currently used in steel and cement plant by mixing with limestone. Such a possibilty is unavailable in the power sector as most boilers are pulversied coal boilers.

Q 3: What will the possibility to use biomass for energy generation is any work done by the CSE? Because biomass has low calorific value?

Ans: We will shortly be publishing a report on the same. We will keep you updated

Q 4: What is the views of CSE on setting up the CO2 emissions standard for power plants?

Ans: CO2 emission from the plants primarily depends on the amount of coal burnt, and in turn, heat rate or efficiency of the plant. BEE and CERC gives efficiency target to the plants based on incentives or regulations. Thus, our prime focus should be to install best available technology in new plants, plants should get good quality of coal, renovation and modernization should be done to ensure the fleet efficiency.



Yogesh Desai

Q 1: What are norms of SOx, NOx and SPM?

Ans: It varies across industries. Please refer to Environment Protection Act, 1962 for these norms.