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Hathazari Power Plant fined for polluting Halda River

Published : Thursday, 18 July, 2019 at 12:00 AM  Count : 908

The Department of Environment (DoE) has imposed a fine of Tk 2 million on the Hathazari 100MW Peaking Power Plant for polluting the Halda River by dumping industrial waste.
The authorities also ordered the temporary shutdown of the plant after a hearing over the harmful effects of the release of its furnace oil into a water body connected to the river of fishes within it.
Moazzem Hossain, Director of the Department of Environment, Chattogram, passed the order on Wednesday.
Safiuddin Ahmed, Manager of Hathazari Power Plant, and its Executive Engineer Sayed Md Erfanul Kibria were present in the department when the fine was announced. But the two declined to speak to the media on the matter.
The evidence found a few days ago proved that the      Halda is being contaminated by the industrial wastes released by the plant, Muktadir Hassan, Assistant Director of Chattogram DoE, said.
"Hathazari Power Plant was fined for polluting the river. Effluent Treatment Plants or ETP for the factory was not constructed as well. A temporary shutdown has also been ordered as ETP and oil separator system were not yet in place. "
DoE Director Azadur Rahman Mallik had summoned the plant authorities to appear before the department after finding evidence for the pollution of the country's biggest natural fish breeding ground on July 9.
Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) Md Ruhul Amin had visited at Mora Chhara wetland in the 11 mile area in Hathazari after being told about the dumping of the factory's furnace oil into a water body connected to the river.  He had confirmed the matter the following day.
"The power plant had stopped dumping its furnace oil into a water body after being informed. The channel, which was used to dump the oil into the wetland, had been filled immediately, said UNO Ruhul Amin.
The authorities secretly dumped its furnace oil with water after heavy rains, said zoology teacher at Chattogram University Manzurul Kibria, who leads Chattogram University Halda River Research Laboratory.

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