Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) has called for a fresh environmental impact assessment (EIA) involving international experts for the proposed Rampal Power Plant Project.
The call came from the annual meeting of the anti-graft agency in its auditorium in the capital yesterday. An EIA prepared in August 2013 by the government's Centre for Environmental and Geographic Information Services that gave the green light to the project is widely considered to be flawed.
“Once the coal-fired power plant is set up near the Sundarbans without an acceptable and fair environmental assessment, it will welcome havoc into the mangrove forest,” said TIB Executive Director Dr Iftekharuzzaman.
The proposed 1,320MW power station is a joint venture between Bangladeshi and Indian companies. Environmentalists claim that the power plant will pose a threat to the Sundarbans in various ways as it is located just 4km outside the designated ecologically critical area of the forest.
The plant is expected to produce 750,000 tonnes of fly ash and 200,000 tonnes of bottom ash a year, according to an earlier EIA.
TIB trustee board chairperson Sultana Kamal and its member Mohammad Shamsuddin, among others, spoke at the meeting.