NEW DELHI: It has reported that India ‘s leading iron and steel companies, fared poorly in the green rating test conducted by the Centre for Science and Environment.
The Indian iron and steel sector’s energy consumption of 6.6 GCal per tonne, is 50 per cent higher than the global best practice. Its water consumption (excluding power generation, townships and other downstream operations) is thrice as high. Most steel plants were found to be non-compliant with pollution norms., Economic Times report says.
According to the report, This is a result of a two year long exercise covering 21 steelmakers of over 0.5 million tonnes of annual capacity each. According to Sunita Narain, director general, CSE, “The poor environmental performance of this sector is a measure of the failure of the regulatory institutions in the country. Nobody is asking this sector to improve its green bottom-line. Nobody is measuring and monitoring its actual performance.”
Interestingly the report finds large plants to have close to 1,200 hectares (ha) of land per million tonne of installed capacity, whereas CSE claims a well-designed plant needs not more than 200 ha per million tonne. With its existing land area, the sector could ideally produce 300 million tonnes instead of todays 75 million tonnes and should not need extra land till 2025, says CSE
Their scores of three of five leaves count as average in the green rating exercise. The sector as a whole took just One leaf, scoring just 19 per cent. The cement sector in comparison had back in 2005 earned 36 per cent and Three Leaves.
In the past, CSE green rating programme has scrutinised the automobile, paper, Chlor-Alkali and cement sectors. For this, the key fifth sector, CSE has also offered solutions for improvement.
Tata Steel, Jamshedpur took the fifth spot. Naveen Jindal led Jindal Steel and Power, in Raigarh the ninth. And plants of the country’s largest steelmaker, Steel Authority of India were found be non-transparent and non-compliant, not participating voluntarily. The only exception was SAIL Rourkela whose participation earned it a One Leaf
“The iron and steel sector’s score is the lowest compared with the other sectors that GRP has rated previously. In fact, the steel sector not only has the worst pollution compliance record, it was also found to be highly non-transparent and poor on information disclosure,” said Chandra Bhushan, who heads CSE’s Green Rating Programme.