Govt mulls reducing period of green/forest clearances

NEW DELHI, July 18: The Government is considering reducing the period for mandatory forest and environment clearances for new industry units from the present 180 days, a top Environment Ministry official said today.
The clearance process has already been streamlined. Now, forest and environment clearances are given within 180 days, he said.
Earlier, it used to take 600 days to give green clearance to projects, which has been reduced to 180 days now.
“For forest clearances, the number of days has been reduced from 550 days to 180 days and this certainly needs to be brought down,” Jha said speaking at the annual session of Cement Manufacturers Association (CMA).
He also invited suggestions from the industry and other stakeholders to bring down this time line and improve the process.
As per the ministry’s standards, it should not take more than 90-120 days for environmental clearance and 120-150 days for forest clearances, depending on the size of forest diversion, he added.
While giving clearances, Jha said the government would maintain an environmental balance for the present as well as future generation as also keeping in mind the development goals.
That apart, the secretary also asked the industry to opt for better fuel utilisation by upgrading technology and utilising better solutions.
“We are planning to have some discussions in the near future and we would like to have your (industry) suggestion based on your experiences,” he added.
The Government is planing to reduce the usage of fossil fuel by up to 40 per cent by 2030 and increase energy efficiency, said Jha. (PTI)


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