Emissions from the coal mines and power plants would cause 29000 air pollution-related deaths, 40000 asthma confirm cases, 19906 new asthma cases in children, 32000 pre-term births, as well as disability related to pulmonary disease.
Prof. Dr. Abdullah G Arijo
Results of hierarchical analyses indicate that high coal production levels are associated with worse adjusted health status and higher rates of cardiopulmonary (Heart and Lungs) disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, hypertension, and lung and kidney disease.
Tharparkar coal mines on the one hand are big blessings whereas, on the other hand, there are ample issues associated with this precious asset.
There are significant environmental impacts associated with coal mining and its use. It could require the removal of massive amounts of topsoil, leading to erosion, loss of habitat and pollution. Coal mining causes acid mine drainage, which causes heavy metals to dissolve and seep into ground and surface water.
Besides, Coalmining harms land, surface water, groundwater and even air, impacts on the land from mining cause drastic changes in the local area, damage to plants, animals and humans occurs from the destruction and removal of habitat and environmental contamination.
With an Estimated Cost (US $ 995.4 million) this setup has been able to create 2500 jobs, with a local share of 1800 against the installed Capacity (660MW). The Thar coal project could help the government save up to $6 billion as the expenditure on the import of energy, including petrol and liquid petroleum, which had touched $24bn. This project has given huge benefits when it comes to the power production sector, however, there are health and environmental issues that have not been addressed.
Upon burning, coal produces several gaseous by-products, including carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide, sulphur dioxide and methane gas, all of which contribute to global climate change
Coal and fuel oil combustion emit fly ash particles into the atmosphere, which contribute to air pollution problems. Upon burning, coal produces several gaseous by-products, including carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide, sulphur dioxide and methane gas, all of which contribute to global climate change.
Studies reveal that the emissions from the massive clusters of coal mines and power plants in Thar will cause alarming levels of toxic depositions in the region and expose the local population to serious health risks, according to a Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air (CREA) study.
If not properly taken into consideration, according to one study, the Thar emissions would constitute one of the largest hotspots of mercury and carbon dioxide in South Asia, adding that the increase in mercury concentrations in crops could also be potentially dangerous for the inhabitants of the area.
Reports reveal, serious health problems faced by the locals. It is, therefore, necessary that the concerned company must take the matter aimed at helping the sufferings of the local folks.
Print and electronic media in Pakistan have long been portraying the problem with a particular focus on the emissions from the coal mines and power plants would be responsible for 29000 air pollution-related deaths, 40000 asthma confirm cases, 19906 new cases of asthma in children, 32000 pre-term births, as well as disability related to pulmonary disease. Therefore, we must act quickly and smartly, or in days to come the concentration of the issues may increase and reach the point of no return.
Prof. (R) Dr. Abdullah G. Arijo is Advisor and Visiting Professor Shaheed Benazir Bhutto University of Veterinary and Animal Science, Sakrand, Sindh Pakistan. Formerly, he was Chairman, Department of Parasitology, Sindh Agriculture University Tando Jam. After retirement, he also served there as Advisor Academics & P&D to Vice Chancellor. He can be reached at Email: firstname.lastname@example.org