Limestone mining by cement company in EJH  opposed

 KHNAM, STIEH lodge complaint with state pollution board

 GUWAHATI: Khun Hynniewtrep National Awakening Movement (KHNAM) and STIEH (Saindur, Tipkur Tipkha, Ieng, Ehrngiew, Khun Hynniewtrep) have objected to limestone mining by Star Cement in East Jaintia Hills district citing pollution hazards and adverse impact on environment and tourism.

In a letter to the member secretary, Meghalaya State Pollution Board, the two parties while opposing limestone mining at Brishyrnot, stated that the activity would have an extremely negative impact on environment in the area.

“Limestone mining can pollute water and create sinkholes. The actual mining process also changes existing waterways, adding additional water to streams and other bodies of water that not only floods the surrounding area, but adds pollutants to it as well,” the parties stated in the letter to MSPB.

“Ground water quality will be affected with sediments spilling directly into the aquifers. As contaminants in ground water move faster through limestone than other types of rocks, therefore, the effect will be hazardous. Quarrying also removes the entire subcutaneous zone, which is an important ground water storage area,” they stated.

“Dust associated with limestone quarrying because of drilling, crushing and screening of rock can travel long distances from a mining site and affect rural residential areas. Mining will immensely affect forest area in the region which is the source for medicine (dawai kynbat) and deforestation will affect the wildlife thereby contributing to global warming,” the parties stated in the complaint.

“Moreover, it will destroy the tourist sites in the area and affect villages such as Sonapyrdi, Kuliang, Borsora, Lumtongseng, Sakhri and Shamplong and its residents. The River lukha located in the vicinity will also be affected to a large scale. Therefore, we strongly oppose the public hearing and mining of limestone from the areas,” they added.

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