Environment Management & Pollution Control

Company’s Environment Policy :

Following the guidelines provided by the National Environment Policy and keeping with the objectives of meeting ever increasing demand of power, CESC have framed a comprehensive Environment Policy.

We believe that our commitment towards the well-being of the living, preservation of the non-living and protection of the environment in which we operate , is an integral part of the power generation process . We recognize our obligation both locally and globally and to the present and future generations and shall adopt best possible practices of environmental management for maintaining the ecological balance.

Thermal power plants are categorized as one of the grossly polluting industries anywhere in the world. Thus our responsibility towards environment is enormous and therefore to prosper in our business by protecting the environment and achieving sustainable development we have set our goals and to meet the goals time bound actions are taken.

Our Goals include not only ensuring compliances with all applicable statutes but also achieving internal standards which are more stringent than the statutes The existing processes are improved upon and new processes are devised . Techno-economically viable state of the art technologies are also adopted to achieve the in house standards. Environmental performances and its impact on environment are monitored and wherever needed the environment management systems are revised through self-assessment and corrective actions.

Charter Of Corporate Responsibility for Environment Protection(CREP) :

As CESC is totally committed to go beyond compliance by voluntarily adopting clean technologies , it endorses the action points of the Charter formulated for Thermal Power Plants. Our generating Stations follow the guidelines and achieve the targets set by the Charter.

Pollution Control Activities :

The pollution control activities at our four Generating Stations include

  • Emission control
  • Effluent control and effluent recycling
  • Ambient air monitoring
  • Solid waste management
  • Hazardous waste management
  • Plantation

Emission Control :

Our constant endeavour has been to contain the particulate emission from our pulverized fuel fired Generating Stations not only within the stipulated norms but to achieve the internal targets set well below the statutory limits.

However our oldest Generating Station namely New Cossipore Generating Station is around 60 years old and it had rudimentary emission control facilities for its stoker fired boilers, at the time of inception with almost no environmental norms in place.

However within a span of three years from January 2003, the boilers have been retrofitted with state-of-art emission control equipments and since early 2006 the emission level of New Cossipore are within the statute.

Flue Stacks :
At our pulverized fuel fired Generating Stations tall stacks are provided for extensive dispersion of particulates and other gases emitted due to combustion of coal.

In fact the stacks for our Unit no.1 and 2 at Budge Budge Generating Station measure 275 metres.

Electrostatic Precipitators :
Primarily particulate emission from the boilers are controlled by highly efficient Electrostatic Precipitators .

Wet Electrostatic Precipitators :
At our New Cossipore Generating Stations having stoker fired boilers as mentioned above we have retrofitted Wet Electrostatic Precipitators (Wet ESP) to the boilers to contain the particulate emission. After frantic search in India and abroad since 2001, to workout a technical solution for retrofitting of emission control equipments as could be possible with severe space constraint besides the difficulty in matching with the very old boiler technology, the workable option was installation of Wet ESPs on the roof of the boiler house. This technology was imported from USA and the equipments were manufactured indigenously under in-house supervision.
A pilot demonstration of a Wet ESP plant brought in from USA was tried and found successful. The Wet ESPs have the facilities of water fogging followed by electrostatic separation within the same equipment. Incidentally, installing Wet ESPs is a pioneering project, and no other power plants in the country can boast of such an equipment.

Flue gas Conditioning :

Particulate emission at all our pulverized fuel (p.f) fired Generating Stations are further reduced through flue gas conditioning by means of controlled ammonia dosing in the flue path prior to electrostatic precipitation. These automated systems are developed in-house and adopted after extensive experiments.

Low-NOx Burners :
At our Budge Budge Generating Station Low-NOx burners are provided to control NOx emission. NOx emission is also reduced by adopting measures for efficient combustion of fuel at all our Generating Stations.

On line emission monitoring equipment :
Opacity meters installed at our p.f fired Generating Stations monitor the level of particulates continuously and also provides the feed back to the automated flue gas conditioning system which in turn controls the rate of conditioning accordingly. Digital video cameras also have been installed for continuous visual monitoring of emission quality.
Continuous monitoring equipment for monitoring SOx and NOx are also installed at the stacks of our Budge Budge and Southern Generating Stations.

On line data acquisition and management :
In order to have a close watch on the level of particulate emission these data are displayed continuously not only on the control panels of Control Rooms at our Generating Stations but also in much larger format special displays on top the panels alongside the most important performance parameters of the power station. This facility not only makes monitoring easier for the operating personnel but also drives them to attach utmost importance to the parameter.

These real-time data are also displayed continuously at the Station Managers desk through local area networks of respective Generating Sations , to Vice President(Generation)’s office at the Company’s Head Office and to the Corporate Environment Cell through CESC’s own intranet.

GHG Emission and Clean Development Mechanism credit
The Company has also focused on energy efficient technologies and has adopted various energy efficiency improvement measures in the Generating Stations to accomplish this mission.

CESC is the first thermal power utility in the world to be registered with UNFCCC for Carbon Credits. In fact, today CESC has to its credit, three registered CDM project which reflects our strong commitment towards reduction of GHG emission. Our focus on energy efficient technologies and adoption of various energy efficiency improvement measures in the Generating Stations resulted in accomplishing this mission.

At Budge Budge we have been able to reduce energy consumption per kwh of energy generation and at Titagarh the original auxiliary fuel combustion system have been upgraded with more energy efficient technology. In both cases, significant saving in coal consumption resulted in reduction in CO2 generation.

Effluent Control :

The circulating water from the river pumped through the condensers of the units having once-through system goes back to the river without any appreciable change of physical and chemical properties. The temperature of the CW outlet water discharged is monitored so that the difference between the temperatures at intake and outfall remains always within the permissible limit.
Treatment of all other effluents generated from different processes and sections of the Generating Station is primarily carried out at the Effluent Treatment Plants(ETP) by controlled dosing of necessary chemicals.
Neutralising pits are there at all our Generating Stations for treatment of effluent released from the De-Mineralizing Plants prior to its final treatment in ETPs.

Effluent Recyling and Conservation

All our Generating Stations except New Cossipore have achieved complete recycling of effluent by adopting different modified processes.

  • Recycling of bottom ash handling water :
    These systems not only conserves huge quantity of fresh water normally used for ash handling but also eliminate the possibility of ash laden effluent to be discharged to the river due to improper treatment at any point of time.
    Both our Budge Budge and Southern Generating Station were provided with zero- discharge bottom ash handling system since their inception . In fact this system when installed at Southern was the first of its kind in the country.
    At Titagarh Generating Station however a similar closed system was developed in-house for handling bottom ash.
  • Recycling of process effluent :
    Other forms of process effluents are primarily treated at the ETPs and recycled after further treatment and polishing though filters, for reuse as service water. All these systems have been developed in-house and put into successful operation.
  • Cooling Towers :
    Cooling towers which facilitates conservation of huge quantity of river water are installed at our Budge Budge Generating station for the Condenser Cooling Water system .
  • Root Zone System :
    This eco-friendly system has been installed at our Titagarh Generating Station for treatment of sewage released from the septic tank overflow and the clean water is entirely reused in gardening and watering of plants. This is in addition to the normal sewage treatment carried out for treatment of sewage in all the plants.
  • Ambient Air Monitoring :
    Ambient parameters are monitored at all our Generating Stations and also in the vicinity , according to a fixed schedule and a close watch is kept on the parameters which are always within our internal targets. One Continuous Ambient Air Quality Monitoring Station has been installed inside Budge Budge Generating Station.
    Work Zone monitoring is also carried out so that people working in pollution prone areas like Coal Handling , Ash Handling and De-Mineralizing Plants are not exposed to undesirable pollution.
    Dust Extraction and Dust Suppression Systems are provided at the Coal Handling plants to contain fugitive emission of coal dust.
  • Solid waste handling and management :

Ash Handling :

At all our p.f. fired Generating Stations dense phase Dry Ash Extraction Systems are installed by means of which fly ash is extracted and conveyed from the ESP hoppers to the Ash Silos. None of our Generating Stations are provided with Ash Ponds which have innumerable adverse effects on environment and human health.
Bottom Ash is transferred in from of slurry to the Hydrobins through the Zero-Discharge System ( as mentioned above) from where after decantation the moist ash is transported in dumpers for land development , construction of roads and structural filling. The handling water however moves in a closed cycle , thus eliminating the possibility of environmental degradation and conserving huge quantity of fresh water.

Ash Utilization :

Utilization of fly ash has always been a high priority issue for the CESC’s management. A separate Ash Management Cell at the Corporate level oversees ash utilization from all the Generating Stations.
Whole of the fly ash generated at the Southern Generating Station is being utilized in the manufacturing of Portland Pozzolana Cement (PPC).
Fly ash from our Budge Budge Generating Station is transported pneumatically through pipelines to the Silos on the pontoon jetties at the river front ,erected specially for utilization of ash. Ash from these Silos are directly loaded into covered barges for export to Bangladesh for manufacturing of PPC brand cement.
To reduce dependency on external entrepreneurs and unforeseen disturbances in the supply chain of fly ash for export , a back-up system of High Concentration Slurry handling has been installed to utilize fly ash from Budge Budge Generating Station. Only in the event of exigencies fly ash is transported in form of thick slurry, through this eco-friendly system to a nearby site for making of hillocks to be finally converted into a resort.
At Titagarh Generating Station , an automatic bagging plant has been erected wherein dry fly ash is bagged and transported to cement manufacturers for making of PPC. Dry fly ash from Titagarh Generating Station is being exported to Bangladesh for manufacturing of PPC brand cement

A mechanized brick plant in the vicinity of Titagarh has been erected for making of fly ash bricks. At present ash from Titagarh is transported in moist form for making of roads , land development and structural filling. Ash from both Titagarh and Budge Budge have been widely used in construction of important roads and highways in and around Kolkata.

Hazardous Waste Management :

All our Generating Stations hold valid authorization by the West Bengal Pollution Control Board for storage and disposal of hazardous wastes.

As per the order of the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India the Environmental Information in standard formats, in both English and Bengali languages are displayed at the main entrance of all the Generating Stations for public viewing and the information is routinely updated at the beginning of every month.

  • Plantation :
    Plantation and green belt development in and around the Generating Stations for abatement of air pollution, attenuation of noise and serving as sink for CO2 havealways been considered to be very important aspects of environment management in CESC . The Generating Stations being located either within or very close to the city area, the space available for plantation is limited. But even within this constraint , trees have been planted in spaces available .
    At Budge Budge where space available for plantation is more compared to other Generating Stations, a total of over 1,00,000 trees have been planted and are being maintained under the guidance of expert consultants.

Environmental Management Systems & Occupational Health and Safety Systems :

Our p.f fired Stations namely Budge Budge, Titagarh and Southern Generating Stations are ISO 14001 certified and also Occupational Health and Safety Assessment System OHSAS 18001 certified power stations.

Environmental Management set-up :

An Environment Cell at Generation Division’s Corporate office facilitates strategic decisions regarding environment management ,oversees the environment management practices at the Generating Stations , liaise with Statutory Authorities along with performance monitoring. Engineers from the Corporate cell make surprise visits to the Generating Stations and monitor the particulate , SOx and NOx emission levels.

At every individual Generating Station, a local Environment Management group consisting of Station engineers perform all the required functions of environmental management and pollution control.
Another group at the corporate office namely the Ash Management Cell, monitors and control the ash evacuation / utilization activities of all the Generating Stations.
To accomplish and implement certain specific objectives of the management , Special Task teams are formed ,consisting of three / four engineers from the Generation Division. ‘Flue Gas Conditioning’ for emission reduction and ‘Total Effluent Recycling’ are couple of such special tasks implemented by those teams.

Awards and Accolades for Environmental initiatives :

  • Budge Budge Generating Station was awarded the Second prize in Environment Excellence Award 2004 and first prize in Environment Excellence Award 2006 by West Bengal Cleaner Production centre a collaborative effort of Indian Chamber of Commerce and West Bengal Pollution Control Board.
  • CESC received “National Award for Fly-Ash Utilization” from Ministry of Power, MoEF, and Department of Science & Technology on 4th December, 2005 at New Delhi.
  • Budge Budge Generating Station Won the “Greentech Environment Excellence Gold Award in Thermal Power Sector” in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2012 organised by Greentech Foundation, New Delhi.
  • Budge Budge Generating Station received Silver Shield for Environment Management in Thermal Power Station in National Awards for Meritorious Performance in Power Sector from Ministry of Power, Govt. of India in January 2010.
  • Budge Budge Generating Station received Gold Award for Best Environmental Performance Power Plant of the Year in Asian Power Awards 2010 organised by Asian Power Magazine.
  • Budge Budge Generating Station received Good Green Governance Awards 2011 from Srishti Publications in April 2012.
  • Budge Budge Generating Station received Award for Innovative Environmental Project from Confederation of Indian Industry in 2012.
  • Titagarh Generating Station received National Water Management Award for Water Efficient Unit from Confederation Indian Industry in 2009.
  • Titagarh Generating Station received Bronze Award for Environmental Upgradation in Asian Power Awards 2012.
  • Southern Generating Station ranked third in the large scale industry sector of Environmental Excellance Award, 2007 conferred by Indian Chamber of Commerce and West Bengal Pollution Control Board.