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Tata Mundra Ultra Mega Power Project, Gujarat, India


The 4,000 MW coal-fired power plant Tata Mundra Ultra Mega Power Project (Coastal Gujarat Power Limited is the subsiadiary of Tata Mundra UMPP) is the first Ultra Mega Power Project (UMPP) established in India. It got approval from the Government of India in 2006-07. The project was aimed to meet the growing energy demands of the country. However, the project has come up in the ecologically fragile areas of Kutch. There are also a number of projects exists nearby this project within a stretch of 70 kms. All these projects set a target to produce 22,000 MW power.

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Tata Mundra Ultra Mega Power Project, Gujarat, India
State or province:Gujarat
Location of conflict:Taluka-Mundra; District- Kutch
Accuracy of locationHIGH (Local level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict. 1st level:Fossil Fuels and Climate Justice/Energy
Type of conflict. 2nd level:Land acquisition conflicts
Thermal power plants
Specific commodities:Fish
Project Details and Actors
Project details

Coastal Gujarat Power Limited (CGPL), Tata Power’s wholly-owned subsidiary, has implemented the 4000 MW (800 x 5 units) UMPP near the port city of Mundra in the state of Gujarat in India. This UMPP is India’s first 800 MW unit thermal power plant using supercritical technology, and is arguably the most energy-efficient, coal-based thermal power plant in the country. As per the bidding norms, the Project was designed to be run on imported coal. The Project will supply power to five states namely Gujarat, Rajasthan and Maharashtra in Western India and to Haryana and Punjab in Northern India, which are currently facing shortage of electricity. It will provide a competitive source of power and help meet these states’ growing demand for electricity.

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Project area:1,250
Level of Investment:4,140,000,000
Type of populationRural
Start of the conflict:2006
Company names or state enterprises:Coastal Gujarat Power Limited (CGPL) from India
Tata Power from India
Tata Group from India
Relevant government actors:Government of Gujarat, Government of India
International and Finance InstitutionsExport-Import Bank of Korea (KEXIM) (KEXIM) from Republic of Korea
Korea Export Insurance Corporation from Republic of Korea
Asian Development Bank (ADB)
BNP Paribas (BNP) from France
State Bank of India from India
India Infrastructure Finance Company Ltd. from India
Housing and Urban Development Corporation Ltd. from India
Oriental Bank of Commerce from India
Vijaya Bank from India
State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur from India
State Bank of Hyderabad from India
State Bank of Travancore from India
State Bank of Indore from India
Corporación financiera Internacional (CFI)
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:Machimar Adhikar Sangharsh Sangathan [MASS] – Association for the Struggle for Fishworkers Rights, National Fishworkers Forum [NFF], Kanu Kalsaria: ruling party MLA who also spearheaded the protest against Nirma Ltd’s cement plant in Mahuva [2]
Conflict & Mobilization
IntensityMEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)
Reaction stageMobilization for reparations once impacts have been felt
Groups mobilizing:Farmers
Local ejos
Landless peasants
Local government/political parties
Social movements
Fisher people
Forms of mobilization:Blockades
Development of alternative proposals
Media based activism/alternative media
Official complaint letters and petitions
Street protest/marches
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Air pollution, Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Food insecurity (crop damage), Global warming, Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Noise pollution, Soil contamination, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion, Large-scale disturbance of hydro and geological systems, Reduced ecological / hydrological connectivity
Other Environmental impactsWater in the outlet channel is at a whopping 35.6-35.8oC, which no marine life accustomed to a Gulf of Kutchh ‘normal’ of 30-31.8 C at this time of the year, will be able to bear [5]
Health ImpactsVisible: Other environmental related diseases
Other Health impactsAn increase of 20% of severe respiratory diseases is reported among children in the villages near to Tata Mundra power project in Gujarat. The menace of coal dust and fly ash is putting the lives of people and that of animals and horticulture at risk.
Socio-economical ImpactsVisible: Loss of livelihood, Specific impacts on women, Violations of human rights, Land dispossession, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Potential: Displacement, Lack of work security, labour absenteeism, firings, unemployment, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures
Project StatusIn operation
Conflict outcome / response:Compensation
Environmental improvements, rehabilitation/restoration of area
Negotiated alternative solution
New legislation
Strengthening of participation
New Environmental Impact Assessment/Study
Development of alternatives:Fact-finding team has given three different sets of recommendations – one for the company, the second for the IFIs/FIs that financed the project, and the third for the state and national governments.
For the company
1. Compute and monetize all the social and environmental costs and add these to the project costs;
2. Compensate all local people for their livelihood losses;
3. Create a fund for the restoration of mangroves destroyed;
4. Put a halt on operations until the restoration and compensation are done;
5. Immediately conduct an independent and thorough EIA , post-first Unit operation;
6. Conduct a thorough health survey of the entire population and use it as a baseline data for compensating future damage;
7. Employ all possible pollution control measures on a war footing, to save this fragile zone from further damage;
8. Restore peoples access to fishing and grazing grounds, and to salt-pans unconditionally;
9. Provide compensation and medical facilities to help people cope with pollution related problems.
For Government of India and Gujarat
1. Put a moratorium on permission to any more industry/power plants in Mundra/Kutch;
2. Issue a Show Cause to the CGPL/Tata Mundra for multiple violations of clearance conditions;
3. Constitute independent expert committee(s) to thoroughly investigate all pollution, contamination and radioactivity hazard within a reasonable time frame;
4. Based on any such independent expert report, take punitive actions;
5. Do not subsidize the power produced and sold by CGPL by increasing the contracted tariff;
6. All national banks/financial institutions should be directed to adopt sound social and environmental safeguard policies at a reasonable timeframe and their implementation should be made mandatory.
For Financial Institutions
1. The IFIs should undertake an immediate review of the project to examine adherence of their safeguard polices;
2. Until such a review is done, their financial assistance to the project should be suspended. If review concludes that the project is undesirable or unviable, the IFIs should withdraw from it;
3. IFIs should put in place an independent monitoring mechanism to ensure strict compliance of their safeguard policies.
4. National financial institutions should adopt social and environmental policies and should implement them scrupulously in this project. The implementation should be monitored by independent agencies, which include the affected peoples representatives [1].
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:No
Briefly explain:The project has disproportionately high social, environmental, and economic costs.
The company, the licensing agencies of the Government of Gujarat and India, and the national and international financial institutions have either ignored or willfully neglected the social and environmental high costs and did little to mitigate them.
The Social Impact Assessment and Environmental Impact Assessment are misleading and erroneous, having excluded a large number of communities whose loss of livelihood was overlooked. Cumulative impact studies required to understand the overall impacts were not done.
Both the governments and the IFIs failed to earnestly monitor the adherence to laws and their safeguard polices.
The failure to monitor contributed to the continuance of the violations by the company.
The governments and the IFIs are equally complicit in the violations by the company [1].
Sources & Materials
Related laws and legislations - Juridical texts related to the conflict

Coastal Regulation Zone Act
[click to view]

The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act
[click to view]

Land Acquisition and rehabilitation act (2013)
[click to view]

[click to view]

References to published books, academic articles, movies or published documentaries

The Real Cost of Power

Cost of Power.pdf
[click to view]

Links to general newspaper articles, blogs or other websites

(5) Press Release: Severe Impacts Undermined, while Tata Mundra Project seeks expansion
[click to view]

(2)Kutch fisherfolk protest at Tata, Adani projects around Mundra
[click to view]

Tata Mundra Ultra Mega Power Project
[click to view]

(4) 4000 MW Mundra Ultra Mega Power Project (UMPP)
[click to view]

(3) Tata Power Mundra Ultra Mega Power Project
[click to view]

Foreign NGOs spreading falsehood against Mundra plant: Tata Power
[click to view]

Gujarat – Statement condemning World Bank President’s refusal to accept CAO findings confirming Tata Mundra Plant violations - See more at:
[click to view]

Meta information
Contributor:Swapan Kumar Patra
Last update24/06/2014
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