The Rampal power plant is likely to produce ashes of more than 38 million tons as wastage in its entire lifetime of 60 years. A very minimal amount of this ash will be recycled to produce concrete and bricks. However, there is a large tank or pond to hold those ashes at the project site but, the capacity of that pond is very limited as it would be topped up within 12 years. After that, the ashes would only contaminate the adjacent rivers, canals and would pollute the environment of the Sundarbans.
A research article on ‘Report on justifying potential threat at ash-dumping of the Rampal thermal power plant’ was presented at the Dhaka Reporters Unity on Wednesday backed by the national committee to protect Sundarbans.
Advocate Sultana Kamal presided over the program while a US researcher named A Dennis Lemli presented the article. Among others prof Badrul Imam, a geology expert and faculty from Dhaka University, M Abul Bashar, faculty of Environmental Biology, Prof Abdul Aziz, faculty of Botany dept., Dr. Md Abdul Matin, member secretary of the national committee, Sharif Jamil, member of the committee and Dr. Anwar Hossain, faculty of Bangladesh Agricultural University were present at that program.
In his presentation, A Denim Lesli said that, the Rampal thermal power plant will produce 38 million tons of ashes in its total expected lifetime of 60 years. After 12 years of operation, the pond that is being built to hold the ashes will be filled with 10 million tons of ashes. But, still, there will be at least 20 million tons of ashes to dump with no safe place remaining to dump at the project site. It will require about 500 hectors of craters to be filled, or the ashes have to be surface-dumped, either way, it will surely pollute the water bodies of the Sundarbans area.
Sultana Kamla once again requested the government to relocate the power plant site to somewhere distant than Rampal’s current location to save the ecosystem of the Sundarbans. All of the coal-based power plants in the world produces ashes which contain more or less harmful materials like Selenium. Selenium is a very dangerous element that may make the fishes impotent or distorted, she added. We’re protesting the Rampal power plant only for the sake of the great Sundarbans, she stated.