New Uranium Mining Projects - Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, India
(last updated 16 Mar 2021)
Andhra Pradesh · Telangana
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Atomic Minerals Directorate not to take up plan for uranium exploration in Amrabad tiger reserve "for the time being"
Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research (AMD) Director Dr DK Sinha said on Monday (Mar. 15) that it has suspended plans of taking up survey and drilling of boreholes to estimate the uranium deposits in Amrabad Tiger Reserve "for the time being", as the state government is not in favour of the project due to public sentiment against it.
(New Indian Express Mar. 15, 2021)
Telangana Wildlife Board rejects uranium exploration proposal in Amrabad tiger reserve
Telangana Wildlife Board on Monday (Oct. 5) rejected the fresh proposal of Atomic Mineral Directorate for research and exploration for survey and exploration of Uranium in Amrabad Tiger Reserve. The board met over a web conference on Monday.
Telangana state forest department principal chief conservator of forest R Sobha confirmed to TOI that the Telangana forest department Uranium exploration fresh proposal in tiger reserve for wildlife clearance had not been recommended.
Telangana Forest department earlier rejected the forest clearance proposals for the same, and with this, the issue has gone to National Wildlife Board and Ministry of Forest and Environment at center.
(Times of India Oct. 6, 2020)
Telangana forest official opposes uranium exploration proposal in Amrabad Tiger Reserve
Telangana Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF) R Sobha has not recommended the proposal of conducting a uranium survey and exploration in a 83-sq km area of the Amrabad Tiger Reserve, by the Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research (AMDER) of the Department of Atomic Energy.
According to the proposal, the uranium exploration would require drilling of 1,000 coring boreholes of three-inch diameter and 3,000 non-coring boreholes of six-eight inch diameter.
The field reports by Forest Divisional Officers from Nagarjunasagar and Amrabad divisions of the Amrabad Tiger Reserve, available in public domain, point out that drilling of boreholes would mean movement of men and machinery. This would require felling of a large number of trees and forming tracks at least five-metres wide. As a result, they did not recommend the project.
The field director (FD) of the Amrabad Tiger Reserve also did not recommend the project, citing that it would take five years to complete and would disturb the movement of endangered wildlife. He also pointed out that the project, if taken up, would cause pollution of "monumental proportions" of water resources and soil, thereby impacting the life of people and wildlife.
(New Indian Express July 12, 2020)
Uranium exploration suspended in some areas of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh after local protests
In response to a question raised in the Rajya Sabha on Thursday (Dec. 12), Minister of State (MoS) PMO, Dr Jitendra Singh, said that the Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research (AMD), has suspended all uranium exploration activities in Mastipuram area in Wanaparthy district, in addition to two areas in Andhra Pradesh - at Nandyal in Kurnool and Kasurigutta in SPSR Nellore.
In his reply, the MoS said that the activities have been suspended due to protests by the locals. "Presently the drilling of rigs have been withdrawn and the exploratory drilling work has been suspended in these areas as per the directives of local administration," he said.
(New Indian Express Dec. 14, 2019)
Central government announces that uranium mining will not be allowed in the Nallamala forests
The Center has announced that uranium mining will not be allowed in the Nallamala forests. The Center responded to a question raised in the Lok Sabha [lower house of India's parliament] on Wednesday (Nov. 20) by Srikakulam TDP MP Kinjarapu Rammohan Naidu on permits for uranium mining in Nallamala. The Minister of Atomic Energy, Jitendra Singh has replied to this.
(The Hans India Nov. 21, 2019)
Rally held against proposed uranium mining in Nallamala forest
With the demand to save Nallamala forest and preserve ecological balance, the students of KVR Government College took out a huge rally [in Kurnool] under the banner Rangam Praja Samskrutika Vedika on Thursday [Sep. 26].
(The Hans India Sep. 26, 2019)
Telangana State Assembly passes resolution opposing uranium mining in Nallamala forest
The Telangana State Legislative Assembly on Monday (Sep. 16) unanimously passed a resolution requesting the Central government not to permit or allow mining operations of uranium in Nallamala forest area of the State.
(Telangana Today Sep. 16, 2019)
Telangana Congress party panel to battle uranium exploration in Nallamala forest
The Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) on Friday (Sep. 13) formed a special committee that would be responsible for taking up agitation against uranium mining in the Nallamalla forest region. The 17-member panel, which included two MLAs, will be led by senior Congress leader V Hanumantha Rao. C Vamshi Krishna was appointed its convenor.
(New Indian Express Sep. 14, 2019)
Protesters prevent UCIL officials from conducting uranium survey in Nallamala forests
Telangana Vidyavanthula Vedika's [Telangana Education Forum] Nalgonda unit obstructed officials of the Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL) in conducting uranium survey in the Nallamala forests on Tuesday (Sep. 10).
As many as six UCIL officials assigned to carry out the survey were staying at a private hotel in Devarakonda.
Upon learning about their presence in the area, Vidyavanthula Vedika activists staged a dharna [non-violent sit-in protest] in front of the hotel. When the officials tried to head to forests, they were stopped by protestors. Though police got to spot and detained the activists, the officials had to return without conducting the survey.
(New Indian Express Sep. 11, 2019)
Rallies and road blockade against uranium exploration in Amrabad tiger reserve
Mananuru reverberated with 'Jai Nallamala' slogans on Monday (Sep. 9) morning and vehicular traffic was brought to a standstill on Srisailam highway, as people from the forest area and villages across Amrabad mandal came out in large numbers to organise a road blockade as part of 'Nallamala Bandh' [general strike] which was observed by people's organizations and political parties against the Centre's attempts to explore Uranium inside Amrabad tiger reserve.
Shops, banks and educational institutions remained closed on Monday and people took out rallies and raised slogans against the proposed Uranium exploration. Revolutionary songs were sung to which women danced forming a human chain. After filling the air with the spirit of defiance, hundreds made a sit-in at the Ambedkar Chowrastha, blocking the traffic heading towards Srisailam and Nagarkurnool for a couple of hours. The message was clear. People were not going to allow the Centre to carry out its plan to explore uranium in the forests which people have always considered their mother.
(Telangana Today Sep. 9, 2019)
Telangana Congress party demands reversal of state government's approval of uranium exploration in Nallamala forest
The [Telangana] Congress on Friday (Aug. 16) demanded that the state government cancel the permission it has given for uranium mining in Nallamala forest in the state, alleging that it is ruining the health and livelihood of Chenchu tribals and endangering ecology.
In a letter to chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, state Congress president N Uttam Kumar Reddy said the Nallamala forest region is one of the largest forests in the world and the reports of the state government permitting uranium mining in the area were highly disturbing.
(Times of India Aug. 17, 2019)
Professor arrested on his way to meet tribes affected from proposed uranium mining in Nallamala forest - again
Telangana Praja Samiti president Prof M. Kodandaram, AICC Kisan Congress vice-chairman M. Kodanda Reddy, former legislator Dr Vamsi Krishna and others were arrested at Veldanda near Kalwakurthy on Wednesday (Aug. 14) when they were on their way into Nallamala to appraise tribal dwellers about the ill-effects of the proposed uranium mining in the forest tracts.
(Deccan Chronicle Aug. 15, 2019)
Protest rally against uranium mining in Nallamala forest
The members of Nallamala Parirakshana Committee took out a huge rally in Achampet mandal of Nagarkurnool district on Thursday (Aug. 8) and raised slogans against the State and the Central governments for coming out with such a proposal of Uranium mining and destroy the peaceful and most-valuable ecological environment of Nallamala forest.
(The Hans India Aug. 8, 2019)
State Congress party condemns central government's approval of uranium exploration in Amrabad forest
[Telangana] Congress has condemned permission granted to uranium mining in Amrabad forest and alleged that the [Union] government has been trying to loot the 'Ooty of Telangana'.
(The Hans India Aug. 6, 2019)
[Ooty is a town located in the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve in Tamil Nadu]
Professor arrested on his way to meet opponents of uranium mining in Nallamala forest
Telangana Jana Samithi [regional party] chief prof Kodandram has been taken into custody by the police officers. The professor wanted to meet and announce his support to the protesters who have been fighting against the Uranium mining in Nallamala forest, but the police stopped him on his way at Hajipur and detained him.
(The Hans India Aug. 3, 2019)
70,000 people to be displaced for uranium mine in Amrabad Tiger Reserve
The Left parties have demanded that the government desist from its plans to allow Uranium mining in the Amrabad reserve of Nallamala forest.
The proposed Uranium mining would result in displacement of over 70,000 people, predominantly scheduled tribes, living in 42 villages in the area besides severely impacting the biodiversity. The Left parties have decided to organise protests across the State in support of the demand to stop the mining project which was not in the interests of the people.
(The Hindu July 29, 2019)
Campaign launched to save Amrabad Tiger Reserve from uranium mining
A signature campaign for saving the Amrabad Tiger Reserve from uranium mining has been launched by the Hyderabad Tiger Conservation Society (HyTiCoS) as a prelude to the International Tiger Day on July 29.
The campaign was unveiled during the Tiger Day celebrations at the KBR National Park on Saturday (July 27), informed HyTiCoS director Imran Siddiqui.
(The Hindu July 28, 2019)
Environmentalists back Chenchus' fight against uranium mining at Amrabad
The Union government's recent decision to take up uranium mining in Nallamalla forest area at Amrabad in old Mahbubnagar district poses a big threat to the survival of 430 Chenchu families who stay in the thick forest zone.
The environmentalists, who have been expressing concern over the Centre's decision, have decided to visit the tribal habitations on July 19 and join them in the stir.
With news spreading about the government acquiring permission from the Wildlife Protection Board to take up mining has created fear among the Chenchus.
They have resorted to agitations. "Forests are our lifeline. We are depending on the forests for our livelihood. We oppose government's move and will go to any extent to contain their moves to destroy the green and peaceful environment of Nallamalla," said a Chenchu leader.
(The Hans India July 16, 2019)
State official vows they won't allow anyone inside for uranium exploration in Amrabad Tiger Reserve
With the Centre granting "in-principle" clearance for uranium exploration in Amrabad Tiger Reserve in Telangana, despite objections by forest officers, Telangana's Principal Chief Conservator of Forests P K Jha has said they won't allow anyone inside to drill unless full approval is given by the National Tiger Conservation Authority. "We did not allow it till now though the proposal is two-three years old," Jha told The Indian Express.
(The Indian Express July 8, 2019)
Expert panel recommends approval of uranium exploration in Amrabad Tiger Reserve
The quest for uranium deposits to meet India's nuclear power goals has now reached a tiger reserve in Telangana. An expert panel on forests of the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) has recommended in-principle approval for a proposal by the central government's Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) for survey and exploration of uranium over 83 square kilometres in Telangana's Amrabad Tiger Reserve.
The proposal was considered by the Forest Advisory Committee (FAC) in its meeting on May 22, 2019. As per the minutes of the meeting, even though the FAC noted that there are "deficiencies in the proposal", it recommended the project for "in-principle approval" considering that the project is "critical importance from national perspective."
However, FAC stipulated that the approval is subject to the submission of all required documents and said that after "receipt of the same, the complete proposal may be placed before the competent authority for approval." Following this, MoEFCC's Deputy Inspector General of Forests Naresh Kumar wrote to Telangana government on June 19 requesting it to "submit the proposal along-with verified relevant documents" for identified boreholes for further consideration by the environment ministry.
(Mongabay July 5, 2019)
Tribe faces eviction from Amrabad tiger reserve - but uranium exploration approved
Officials in India are threatening to evict a tribe from a tiger reserve in the name of conservation - but have just approved uranium exploration in the same reserve. The move has angered campaigners, who accuse the authorities of hypocrisy.
The Chenchu tribe in Amrabad tiger reserve have pleaded to be allowed to stay on the land which they have been dependent on and managed for millennia.
(Survival International June 15, 2017)
Tribal villagers stage strike over government clearance for uranium exploration in Nallamala forest
A strike last week underscored growing public anger over the government's green light to explore uranium in the Nallamala forest - home to one of India's oldest tiger reserves and the Chenchu, a primitive and protected hunter-gatherer tribe.
The National Board for Wildlife cleared a proposal from the Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research this April to conduct a survey and explore the expensive mineral over 83 square km of Amrabad.
Environmentalists and villagers in the area fear the sample survey will lead to a bigger exploration, ultimately leading to the forest's destruction and uprooting of its indigenous inhabitants.
Nallamala has the Rajiv Gandhi Nagarjuna Sagar-Srisailam tiger reserve project, declared one of the oldest in the country in 1993.
It is a reserved zone for Chenchus, since the Nizams and British ruled the region. The Chenchus depend solely on the jungle, hunting game and gathering forest produce for a living.
The forest-dwellers and villagers living nearby feel threatened by the proposed exploration. People in Nagarkurnool district, which covers Amrabad, observed a total shutdown last week in protest.
They want the government to guarantee that no Chenchu will be evacuated from the area.
"Exploration and mining will threaten Nallamala's rich bio-diversity. Mineral waste could pollute the Krishna river flowing through the forest, and that will be a serious health hazard," environmentalist P Purushottam Reddy said.
(Hindustan Times Apr. 21, 2017)
Uranium mining in Nallamala forest area opposed:
The Anti Uranium Mining Struggle Committee of Nallamala Forest demanded the immediate withdrawal of permissions for mining in the Nallamala forest area for Uranium.
At a round table held here on Tuesday (Feb. 14), Telangana Praja Front said that the Uranium Corporation of India should immediately announce the closure of mining works at Nallamala. They called upon all political parties to oppose mining of Uranium in Nallamala forest area.
The committee leaders said that the government should stop the forcible evacuation of Chenchu tribe from the Tiger Reserve area and should provide all basic amenities to them.
The political parties should respect the fundamental rights of the tribes which have been guaranteed by the Constitution and join hands in protecting their rights.
They also demanded that all cases filed against the struggle committee leaders be withdrawn and any oppressive tactics should be stopped.
(Hans India Feb. 15, 2017)
Exploration outcome results in uranium mining in the core area of Amrabad Tiger Reserve becoming unlikely
While the Uranium exploration proposals were given a nod by the Telangana State Board for Wildlife in its first ever meeting in December last, it is learnt that the Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL) did not find the mineral of desired quality in the area. The Board, when it met the second time on Monday (Feb. 27), made it clear that there was no proposal to mine Uranium.
(The Hindu Feb. 28, 2017)
State Board for Wildlife approves uranium exploration in Amrabad Tiger Reserve
The Department of Atomic Energy is likely to begin exploration for uranium deposits in Amrabad tiger reserve following an approval of a exploration proposal by the State Board for Wildlife here on Tuesday (Dec. 6).
The board approved permission for an exploratory survey in 83sqkm of forest area in the tiger reserve in Amrabad and Udimilla in the former Mahbubnagar district (currently Nagarkurnool district) and in Narayanpur of Nalgonda district.
(Times of India Dec. 7, 2016)
[Amrabad Tiger Reserve was earlier part of the Nagarjunasagar - Srisailam Tiger Reserve. Its northern part located in the newly formed state of Telangana was renamed as Amrabad Tiger Reserve.]
Uranium exploration in Mahbubnagar district to continue despite local opposition
The dust on the controversy over uranium mining in Nalgonda district is still to settle and already the government has begun efforts to mine the resource in Mahbubnagar district. Despite opposition from locals, authorities are going ahead with plans to hold a gram sabha [meeting of those entitled to vote] at Urumilla village in Amrabad mandal, in the Nallamala forest area, on June 14.
"We will conduct the gram sabha on Thursday and educate the people on the proposed aerial survey for extracting rich minerals," Achampet divisional forest officer (DFO) Venkata Ramana told TOI. He said that the proposed meeting would not be a public hearing. Sources said that forest officials have been asked by their higher-ups to conduct the gram sabha in Urumilla immediately to gauge public opinion vis-a-vis the mining plan.
(Times of India June 14, 2012)
(on June 2, 2014, Nalgonda district became part of the newly formed state Telangana)
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Tribal residents opposed to displacement for Lambapur-Peddagattu uranium mine project, fear contamination of water
The Uranium Corporation of India Ltd (UCIL) proposes to set up an open pit and three underground mines in Nalgonda district. It plans a central plant about 48 km from the mine site based on acid leaching.
The UCIL decision comes in the wake of a large uranium resource which has been established at Lambapur-Peddagattu region of the district. The corporation is said to be preparing to take up uranium mining in Chandampet and P A Palli mandals. This is causing anxiety among the girijans [tribal] residents of the two mandals.
"If a uranium project comes up here where are we supposed to go," questions a resident. However, residents like Senavath Shankar of Peddagattu say that they are prepared to shift only if the administration protects their interests in all respects. Ramavath Sakru of Limbapur stated that the people were not ready to be displaced by the uranium project, having already been affected by the Nagarjunasagar dam.
Similarly, human rights and people's organisations have threatened to join residents in opposing uranium exploration. In the context of the opposition, it remains to be seen whether the corporation would go ahead with the exploratory work. State Human Rights Forum secretary Gosula Mohan [...] warns of the danger of uranium getting mixed with Nagarjunasagar water, as the backwaters of the Krishna flow through the Nallamala forests which have large reserves of uranium. This would result in causing health problems to the people.
(The Hans India Mar. 30, 2017)
Envrionmentalists fear impacts of proposed uranium mining at Lambapur-Peddagattu on water quality of Nagarjunasagar dam
Environmental activists warn that radionuclide pollution is likely to emerge as another major concern at Nagarjunasagar dam once proposed uranium mining begins at the Lambapur-Peddagattu region in the vicinity.
The latest proposal of the department of atomic energy (DAE) to take up exploration of a portion of Amrabad tiger reserve to discover uranium reserves has sparked fears of radioactive pollution. The Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL) plans to set up a uranium plant in the catchment of the reservoir. The proposal has been kept in abeyance following protests by locals and environmentalists. If DAE exploration results in discovery of more reserves, mining activity may last long. Several research studies over the last two decades have revealed the presence of uranium in the water samples collected from Nagarjunasagar dam and wells in Nalgonda district. The radionuclide content has varied from below detection level to several times more than the maximum permissible level of 30 micrograms per litre. Baseline surveys revealed that the dam is contaminated by uranium but the level is about 50 times below the detection level [?!].
"There may be no immediate problem from uranium contamination. It will get compounded when the actual mining activity begins. The present contamination is due to soil erosion and use of chemical fertilisers and pesticides. We have seen how uranium mining has impacted water, air and soil quality in Tummalapalle in Kadapa district. But in case of Lambapur-Peddagattu the problem will be more severe as a large water body is located in the vicinity," warned V Satyanarayana, an environmental activist.
(Times of India Feb. 4, 2017)
Groundwater contamination expected to increase beyond standards once uranium mining commences at Lambapur-Peddagattu project, researchers say
Researchers assessing the pre-mining contamination of the environment at Nalgonda have found high levels of Uranium contamination in the groundwater and fair levels of gamma radiation, which will increase drastically once mining commences.
About 41 per cent of the groundwater samples collected from sample sites in Nalgonda were found to have contamination levels higher than permitted. Scientists say the Krishna river water and Nagarjunasagar will not be affected by the mining activity, although activists vehemently dispute it.
Researchers from the Centre for Environment at JNTU, Nuclear Fuel Complex and the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) had analysed sample sites in mineralised zones of Nalgonda.
Levels of contamination in the air, water and soil were analysed and Radon concentrations and gamma radiation in the mineralised zones were found to be marginally high but not over the permissible limits. Radiation levels were classified as elevated.
However, groundwater remains a concern as 41 per cent of the analysed samples showed high levels of Uranium contamination. These would go up once mining commenced.
Dr T. Raghavendra, one of the researchers from JNTU, said, "Radiation levels are below permissible limits only for now. But once mining progresses, it will definitely have an impact. They will have to explain how they will control the radiation levels."
(Deccan Chronicle May 7, 2014)
Environmentalists warn from possible impacts of uranium mining in Lambapur area on Hyderabad's drinking water resource
Few Hyderabadis know that they consume 0.14 to 9.50 micro gram per litre of Uranium when they drink water from the river Krishna. While the amount is within the permissible limits set by the World Health Organisation, environmentalists warn that the dissolved uranium levels in water will go up once the Uranium Corporation of India Limited takes up mining in Nagarjunasagar.
The intake may then actually exceed the permissible levels of 15 micro grams per litre fixed by the World Health Organisation.
Almost 60 per cent of the drinking water needs of the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad are met by Krishna water drawn from Nagarjunasagar and the state government has plans to tap more water from the river, ultimately taking it to 80 per cent.
(Deccan Chronicle July 18, 2011)
UCIL seeking clearances for construction of three underground mines and a uranium mill in the Lambapur area
Regarding the commencement of the uranium mining plant in Nalgonda, the sources said that UCIL is actively pursuing the clearances for construction of three underground mines in the Lambapur area and a processing plant at Seripallee, a village close to the mine site.
(Times of India Oct. 24, 2010)
Villagers stop uranium exploration, as livestock dies after consumption of borehole water
A section of the villagers of Peddamula village stopped the ongoing reconnaissance survey of uranium deposits near Chitriyal village in Chandampet mandal on Saturday (Aug. 1).
According to sources, the agitated villagers arrived at the survey site in two tractors and raised slogans alleging that 10 goats of the village died after consuming water from the boreholes dug as part of the survey at the site.
They demanded that the officials concerned should immediately stop the works and pay compensation to the shepherds of the village.
(The Hindu Aug. 2, 2009)
Tribal organisation demands stop of mining in Nalgonda
Andhra Pradesh Girijan Samakhya president Ramavath Ravindra Kumar Naik has demanded immediate revoking of all permissions and alienation of lands to companies like Jindal in Visakhapatnam and Nalgonda districts to stop injustice towards tribals.
Uranium mining in Nalgonda district and proposed bauxite mining in Visakhapatnam agency area, setting up of factory by Jindal group would lead to violation of 1/70 Act, and deprive the Adivasis of their right over the local natural wealth.
(The Hindu July 3, 2007)
Lambapur-Peddagattu uranium project accorded environmental clearance
Central environmental clearance is accorded to the uranium project proposed to be set up in Nalgonda district and two other places, Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL) Chief Executive A. Madhusudana Rao said on April 10, 2006.
(The Hindu, April 11, 2006)
Andhra Pradesh opposition criticises Lambapur-Peddagattu uranium project in State Assembly
The opposition in Andhra Pradesh on March 9, 2006, voiced concern over the threat to public health by the proposed uranium mining unit in Nalgonda district, and asked the Congress government to reconsider the project.
In the state assembly, the main opposition Telugu Desam Party (TDP), Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS), Communist Party of India (CPI), Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M), Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) said the project would not only affect the people of Nalgonda, but will also pose a threat to this state capital by polluting the source of drinking water.
(Times of India March 9, 2006)
Protest walk against uranium mining at Lambapur-Peddagattu
Anti-uranium activists launched a protest walk on January 3, 2006, to mobilise the public support against the Uranium Corporation of India Limited's proposal to set up uranium mining and processing units at Peddagattu and Seripally respectively.
They reached Devarakonda after covering about 40 villages and hamlets and addressed many roadside meetings to educate students and villagers on the ill-effects of uranium.
Addressing a meeting at Devarkonda, Human Rights Forum State general secretary Balagopal flayed the Government's insistence on going ahead with the project when local tribals expressed their opposition against it. "Development should not be at the cost of people. Sustained development with people's involvement is the need the hour," he said.
(The Hindu Jan. 7, 2006)
Indian Government announces plan to construct Lambapur-Peddagattu uranium mine
Government is proposing to set up a uranium mining and processing plant at Nalgonda in Andhra Pradesh, Indian Parliament was informed on Dec. 22, 2005.
In a written reply, Minister of State in Prime Minister's Office Prithviraj Chavan said Uranium Corporation of India Ltd (UCIL) proposes to set up an opencast mine and an underground mine at Lambapur and two underground mines at Peddagattu in Nalgonda. A uranium processing plant is to be set up at Seripally village in Deverkonda Mandal in Andhra Pradesh at estimated cost of Rs 5584.2 million (US$ 124 million). The Ministry of Environment and Forests (MOEF) has given the site clearance and an application has been submitted to MOEF for environmental clearance in respect of setting up of mines.
(Hindustan Times Dec. 22, 2005)
Demonstration in Nalgonda against Lambapur-Peddagattu uranium mine project
On Oct. 25, 2005, anti-uranium activists held a demonstration in Nalgonda in front of the office of the Environment Engineer, Pollution Control Board, reiterating their demand that Uranium Corporation of India Limited proposal for uranium mining in the district be rejected.
On coming to know that the Corporation's proposal to set up mining project at Lambapur-Peddagattu is reportedly being considered by the reconstituted expert committee (mines) at a meeting in New Delhi on October 26, the activists under the aegis of the Movement Against Uranium Project, Jana Vignana Vedika and Human Rights Forum organised the demonstration with placards and banners.
(The Hindu Oct. 26, 2005)
Overwhelming opposition against uranium processing plant at public hearing
Environmentalists, people's representatives, political leaders and local tribals opposed the proposal to construct the uranium processing unit at Seripally in Devarakonda mandal of Nalgonda district.
Of the 60 persons, who took part in the environment public hearing held by the Pollution Control Board here on March 3, 2005, as many as 57 persons said a firm "no" to the Uranium Corporation of India Limited's proposal to set up the Rs.3720 million processing plant. Those who raised serious objection to the plan included the Nalgonda MP, Suravaram Sudhakar Reddy, the Devarakonda MLA, Ravindra Kumar, the Seripally sarpanch, R. Sakru Naik, eminent anti-nuclear activists, Praful Bidwai of New Delhi, Surendra Gadekar and Sanghamitra Gadekar of Gujarat, apart from a large number of locals, predominantly lambadas.
(The Hindu March 4, 2005)
Opposition also to new site of uranium mill
The future of the uranium processing plant proposed by the Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL) hangs in the balance due to the opposition from peoples' representatives, environmental groups and, last but not least, local tribals.
The UCIL shifted the processing plant site from Mallapuram in Pedda Adisarlapally mandal to Seripally in Devarkonda mandal.
While the distance between the mining area, Peddagattu, and Mallapuram was 18 km, the proposed site is 55 km way from the former. "The present site, Seripally, is 28 km from Nagarjunasagar [reservoir]. Hence, there will not be any scope for water contamination," the UCIL's Chief Superintendent, Mechanical, Madhusudan Rao, observes.
However, the Nalgonda MP and Communist Party of India (CPI) general secretary, Suravaram Sudhakar Reddy, is not ready to buy the argument: "We oppose the proposal since the plant could create havoc in the event of floods. If the water that is used for processing of the ore leaks into Nagarjunsagar, it would be having a devastating impact on people. We don't want to see the project anywhere near Nagarjunasagar".
The UCIL desires to acquire 278 hectares of area (173 ha for processing plant, 80 ha for tailings disposal and 25 ha for township). The projected cost for the processing plant is Rs. 3.72 billion (US$ 85.3 million). A public hearing is slated for March 3, 2005.
(The Hindu March 2, 2005)
New site for proposed uranium mill being considered
"We are going to change the processing plant site in tune with the Technical Committee's opinion that it should be established away from Nagarjunasagar," State Minister for Mines and Geology, Uma Madhava Reddy said adding that the Government would take a decision on the issue in a couple of months.
UCIL officials had already launched a search to shift the processing unit to a "safer" site much before the PCB came out with its observations last week. A team of officials inspected revenue land at Seripally in Devarkonda mandal for the purpose, it is learnt.
(The Hindu, Feb. 2, 2004)
State Pollution Control Board says 'no' to uranium plant
In a major victory for environmental groups, the Andhra Pradesh State Pollution Control Board is believed to have decided rejected and "not to consider" the Uranium Corporation of India Limited's (UCIL) proposal to set up uranium mining unit and processing plant at Lambapur/Peddagattu and Mallapuram villages respectively in Nalgonda district. The decisions were taken at the meeting of the Consent For Establishment (CFE) Committee held in Hyderabad on Jan. 28, 2004.
The proposal for the processing plant at Mallapuram, in the vicinity and catchment of the Nagarjunasagar reservoir, was rejected out of hand by the committee. The Technical Committee that had studied the project is reported to have already rejected the proposal. The reservoir, built to supply Hyderabad with water, now already contains uranium concentrations in the 2 - 3 µg/L range, that is above the former WHO 2 µg/L preliminary guidance (WHO's current preliminary guidance is 15 µg/L). Expert opinion is that once mining of uranium ore is permitted in the Lambapur-Peddagattu belt, the leaching of radionuclides into the Nagarjunasagar reservoir will only increase.
For the proposed uranium mine in the Lambapur/ Peddagattu area, the Technical Committee suggested safeguards for its operations. However, the CFE Committee decided not to consider the request for consent of the UCIL at the proposed site as the suggestions and recommendations of the Technical Committee are "impracticable and go against the universally accepted precautionary principle."
(The Hindu Jan. 29, 2004; Times of India Jan. 30, 2004)
Tracts of tiger reserve excised for uranium exploration
On January 16, 2004, the Union forest and environment ministry has approved the denotification of 1,000 hectares of the Rajiv Gandhi Tiger Reserve and 1,000 hectares of reserve forest in Chitral to allow UCIL to carry out exploratory drilling for uranium.
Sources said the area that has been dereserved is home to some species of deer and several invertebrates. The Zoological Survey of India had sometime ago discovered some new species in the area where exploratory drilling has been permitted, sources added.
(Times of India, Feb. 2, 2004)
Guerrilla group attacks Lambapur-Peddagattu uranium mine project
On Dec. 3, 2003, the People's War Group (PWG) set on fire exploration equipment at the site of the proposed Lambapur-Peddagattu uranium mine. Two drilling machines, two generators, two trucks and a jeep were set ablaze by armed members of the guerrilla group. Later, the group held a meeting in Peddagattu village, explaining the tribals the anticipated hazards of the proposed mine. (The Hindu Dec. 5, 2003)
Guerrilla group joins opposition to Lambapur uranium mine project
"We will prevent the project from coming into existence at any cost," spokesman Malkapuram Bhaskar of (Maoist) People's War asserted. The state government should not permit such "anti-people" projects.
(Times of India Aug. 25, 2003)
Political parties worried about Lambapur uranium mine project
The proposed uranium mining project in Nalgonda district has attracted the attention of the major political parties with Congress, MIM, CPI and CPM demanding that the government should put the project on hold until a consensus is reached on the utility and safety of the project.
(Times of India Aug. 17, 2003)
Mining project will affect reserve forest and tiger reserve
As per Uranium Corporation of India Limited's (UCIL's) plans, mining will be conducted over 400 hectares of the Rayaram reserve forest. Similarly, the uranium ore processing plant to be set up near Mallapuram village in the P A Pally mandal is just 3 km away from the Azmapuram reserve forest.
Adding to the worries is the fact that the Rajiv Gandhi-Nagarjunasagar Tiger Reserve is less than 6 km from the proposed mining area. According to a senior official of the forest department, as per the provisions of the Indian Wildlife Act, no industrial activity shall be permitted within 25 km of a notified sanctuary.
Further, mining being an activity capable of increasing the noise levels, the environmentalists' apprehension is that the project, if it becomes a reality, will drive away the precious wildlife of the area. The tiger reserve and the adjoining reserve forest where the mining is proposed is home to the tiger, leopard, bear, several species of deer and other animals.
(Times of India, Aug. 7, 2003)
About the Nagarjunasagar Tiger Reserve:
NGOs mobilizing against uranium mining project
With mining of uranium likely to begin shortly in Lambapur and Peddagutta villages near Nalgonda, several NGOs in the city as well as in the districts have begun the task of mobilising public opinion against the project.
The public hearing on the Uranium Corporation of India Limited's (UCIL) plan to set up a uranium mining plant would be taken up on August 19, 2003. The Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) prepared by UCIL would be presented to the public on August 19 to seek their opinion.
NGOs like Samriti, Environment Protection Council, Centre for Resource Education , Citizens Against Pollution, and Mines Minerals and People are already camping in the area to increase awareness among the villagers about the possible side-effects. A documentary depicting the effects of a similar uranium plant in Jaduguda, Bihar, would also be shown.
"The EIA says that the radiation will be minimal and constantly monitored, but they do not have any concrete action plan as to how they would minimise the radiation," Narasimha Reddy of the Centre for Resource Education said.
As the proposed plant is close to Nagarjuna Sagar reservoir, the effect of radiation, if any, would not only affect the local population but people residing in a much bigger area, he said. "The run-off water from the mine and surrounding areas will seep into the reservoir and finally find its way to the city," Reddy said. The Akkampally reservoir is only 14 km from the proposed mining fields, he said.
(Times of India Aug. 1, 2003)
Uranium mining sets off alarm bells in Andhra Pradesh
Mallapuram and other nearby villages of the Nalgonda district could face disaster if the Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL) starts extracting and processing uranium, which some greens say is highly likely "given the past safety record of UCIL," it has been claimed.
The UCIL wants to set up a 1,250 tonnes a day capacity uranium ore mining unit and processing unit. It would have to acquire 526.65 hectares in the Peddagattu and Yellapur villages for mining uranium and 318.25 hectares for a processing plant proposed to be set up in the Dugyal and Mallapuram villages.
Villagers say the "uranium people" - company representatives - called on them and are making preparations to hold an environmental public hearing on August 19, 2003.
Greens warned villagers against allowing a uranium processing plant to be located so close to human habitations.
It's just one km, from the Nagarjunasagar dam which supplies water for irrigation while the Akkampalli reservoir is four kms away, which is the offtake point for Hyderabad's new drinking water supply scheme.
(Gulf News July 30, 2003)
State government to issue mining license for Lambapur-Peddagattu project
The state government will shortly issue mining licence to the Uranium Corporation of India (UCIL) to extract uranium ore from the Lambapur and Peddagutta reserves in Nalgonda district.
The decision comes in the wake of a technical committee, which studied the UCIL project at Jaduguda in Jharkhand, clearing the proposal to set up a hydro metallurgical plant in Nalgonda district.
The corporation estimated that the two places in Nalgonda district have about 11.02 million tonnes of uranium [ore] reserves spread in a 1,326-acre [536 ha] land. The UCIL reportedly proposed to invest about Rs 450 crore [Rs 4.5 billion = US$ 96 million] for setting up the plant.
According to estimates, the UCIL proposed to generate about 1,250 tonnes of ore per day for 20 to 25 years.
Meanwhile, J Rama Rao of Forum for Better Hyderabad , has asked the government to conduct an environmental impact analysis before allowing the UCIL to start mining operations in Nalgonda district. "In the name of development, future generations should not be deprived of their rights."
(Times of India May 22, 2003)
UCIL applies for mining license for Lambapur-Peddagattu project
Uranium Corporation of India Limited has applied for grant of mining lease for their Lambapur-Peddagattu project (Andhra Pradesh).
(Hindustan Times, Feb. 18, 2003)
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AMD seeks clearance for uranium exploration in Kappatralla reserve forest, Kurnool district
Hyderabad: City-based Atomic Minerals Directorate for Research and Exploration (AMD) has sought the Union ministry of forest and environment for forest clearance for uranium exploration in Kappatralla reserve forest to an extent of 468 hectares.
AMD has sunk 20 boreholes so far and covered only 30% of the area and they have now decided to dig further to cover the remaining area in Kappatralla in Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh.
"The department proposes to carry out survey and subsurface exploration by drilling in Kappatralla reserve forest," the directorate said in its application, hoping to carry out uranium mining in 468 hectares in the forest reserve.
(Times of India Aug. 26, 2020)
Uranium exploration suspended in some areas of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh after local protests
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New uranium deposits identified in Andhra Pradesh
The Atomic Minerals Directorate has identified new sources of uranium at Koppunuru in Guntur district and Bichun and Nayagaon areas of Jaipur district.
(Deccan Herald Aug. 16, 2012)
Uranium found in two Andhra Pradesh villages
The Atomic Minerals Directorate has discovered uranium reserves in Peddur and Kottur villages of Karimnagar district.
In Peddur village, the AMD team noticed the presence of as high as 1.96 per cent tri-uranium octoxide or U3O8. In the Kottur area, U3O8 was present up to 0.059 per cent.
(Deccan Chronicle Mar 9, 2011)
(YSR district was formerly named Kadapa or Cuddappah district)
> View deposit info
Development of India's largest uranium deposit Kanampalle to start within six months?
India's State-run Uranium Corporation India Limited (UCIL) will develop the country's largest uranium deposit, entailing an investment of about $845-million and forecast to yield 6,000 t/d of the element [ehm, well: ore].
The deposit at Kanampalli, in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, would be larger than UCIL's existing uranium assets close-by at Tummalapalli and Turamdih, in the eastern state of Jharkhand, which on average yield 3,000 t/d of uranium [ore].
Sources said that UCIL was currently in the process of fixing the boundary of the mining lease. It would soon approach the federal government seeking forest clearances and the state government for pollution control certifications.
Since strategic atomic elements fall within the purview of the Department of Atomic Energy, the Atomic Minerals Department is in charge of the Kanampalli asset and once all approvals from various federal government are received, the mine will be handed over to UCIL for development.
UICIL sources said that it would take about six months for all federal approvals to be in place and thereafter development of the uranium reserves would start. It would take about seven years for full production to start from the mine.
(Mining Weekly Nov. 27, 2019)
UCIL to start development of Kanampalle uranium mine
Uranium Corporation of India Ltd (UCIL), has decided to start the largest domestic uranium mine and processing plant in Kanampalle in Andhra Pradesh with an initial estimated capacity of 6000 tonnes per day, UCIL chairman cum managing director Diwakar Acharya said on Friday (Jan. 18).
Addressing a press meet at Narwapahar, Acharya said that the Kanampalle project would be completed within the current five year plan (2012-17).
The Kanampalle is closer to Tumallapalle where the largest Uranium ore deposit in the country had been explored and a 3000 tonnes per day mine was inaugurated last year while a processing plant with an equal capacity was in the last stages of commissioning.
(The Pioneer Jan. 19, 2012)
(also spelled Tumallapalle)
(YSR district was formerly named Kadapa or Cuddappah district)
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Inauguration of Tummalapalle uranium mine and mill (Andhra Pradesh)
Uranium Corporation of India's new 3,000 tonne per day uranium mine & and processing plant will be inaugurated at Tummalapalle in Andhra Pradesh on Friday (Apr. 20) by Dr Srikumar Banerjee, secretary, department of atomic energy & chairman Atomic Energy Commission.
With confirmed reserves of over 49,000 tonnes of uranium and indications of much larger reserves in the area, Tummalapalle could become one of the world's largest uranium deposits. The new facility will provide a major fillip to the country's much needed uranium fuel for nuclear programme.
Built at a cost of Rs 11.06 billion [US$ 211 million] and spread over 900 hectares, the mine and plant has adopted the latest systems and equipment. The hydro-metallurgical uranium purification plant has a capacity to treat 3,000 tonnes of uranium ore per day which is mined from underground mine located close to the plant.
The plant will treat the dolomite limestone based uraniferous ore and is the first in the country to adopt an alkali leaching processing method. The final product shall be sodium di-uranate.
(The Economic Times Apr. 19, 2012)
MP boycotts public hearing on Tummalapalle uranium mine project for failure to address problems of displaced families
Uranium Corporation of India (UCIL) today held a public hearing in the wake of protests by the villagers whose lands were acquired for its mining project in the district. The Rs 10 billion [US$ 195 million] Kadapa project is aimed at generating power and is expected to provide employment to over a 1,000 locals. However, it faces stiff opposition from environmentalists who say uranium mining can have disastrous effects in the long run.
Meanwhile, local MP and YSR Congress chief Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy accused the PSU [public sector undertaking] officials of doing precious little in redressing the grievances of the villagers whose lands have been acquired for the project. "I strongly urge the concerned officials to find a solution and not take up the project to the next level until the issues are sorted out," Reddy said.
(PTI Mar. 17, 2012)
Tummalapalle uranium mine to be commissioned by April 2012
The Tummalapalle uranium mine located in YSR district of Andhra Pradesh would be commissioned by early April.
The Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) has estimated uranium reserves of the mine at 150,000 tonnes, which are one of the largest in the world.
The DAE Spokesperson, Mr S.K. Malhotra, said that the mine is ready but the uranium processing plants are still under construction, which will take another two months to complete.
A senior official of Uranium Corporation of India Ltd told Business Line that about 1.1 million tonnes of ore be would be mined a year from Tummalapalle, which after processing would yield 250 tonnes of yellowcake (uranium oxide).
The official added that about Rs 11 billion [US$ 222 million] have been invested for developing the mine.
For producing the yellowcake an 'alkaline leaching process' has been devised by Uranium Corporation, which would be used for the first time in the mine, the official said.
(The Hindu Feb. 6, 2012)
UCIL to invest US$ 427 million in Tummalapalle uranium mine and mill project
Uranium Corporation of India Ltd (UCIL) will invest at least Rs 25 billion [US$ 561 million] during the 12th plan in new mine projects in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.
"The investment for two phases of Tummalapalle mine in Andhra Pradesh including processing will cost close to Rs 19 billion [US$ 427 million] [...]," UCIL Director, Technical D Acharya said here today.
(PTI July 27, 2011)
Thummalapalle uranium mine and mill causing depletion and contamination of groundwater even before commissioning
Human Rights Forum State general secretary V.S. Krishna on Friday (June 17) demanded that the government not only drop the proposed expansion of the uranium mine and processing project at Thummalapalli in Vemula mandal in Pulivendula constituency, but cancel the environmental clearance accorded for the project by the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests in February, 2007.
Led by Mr. Krishna, a delegation of HRF functionaries visited Thumalapalle, Bhoomayapalle, Rachakuntapalle, Kottala and Mabbuchinthalapalle villages in Vemula mandal and interacted with the villagers on the problems they were encountering on account of the uranium project.
The delegation noticed contamination of water being pumped through borewells and people complained that groundwater in the nearby villages depleted from 50 feet to over 200 feet now, affecting their drinking water and irrigation needs and deprived them of livelihood.
Groundwater has depleted and became contaminated even before commissioning of the uranium mine and mill and the consequences would be alarming after mining operations begin, Mr. Krishna feared.
The project could drain out water in villages within a radius of 10 kms. and gravely affect drinking water availability and cultivation of crops, he opined.
(The Hindu June 18, 2011)
Villagers complain of water contamination, demand full compensation for families displaced for Thummalapalle uranium mine and mill
YSR Congress Party president and Kadapa MP-elect Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy on Monday (May 23) sought payment of full scale compensation to the families displaced by Uranium Corporation of India project in and around Thummalapalle village in Vemula mandal in Pulivendula constituency.
Mr. Jaganmohan Reddy visited the uranium mine and mill at Thummalapalle and held discussions with the UCIL officials following complaints by the people that the project was causing contamination of groundwater, particularly drinking water.
(The Hindu May 24, 2011)
Tummalapalle uranium mill to start operation by March 2011
While environmental activists vehemently opposed the Uranium Corporation of India's plan to carry out uranium mining in Lambapur area of Nalgonda district, the uranium processing facility in Tummalapalle in Kadapa district has attracted no opposition whatsoever and is now in the final stages of completion.
The processing of uranium ore from the Tummalapalle plant may begin by March 2011, making it a first in south India. Tummallapalle is located in Pulivendula assembly constituency, represented by former chief minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy till his death in September 2009.
According to sources, the location of the uranium plant in an area inside Y S Rajasekhara Reddy constituency ensured that there is no opposition to it, either from the local people or environmental activists. "Enough steps were taken to ensure that the project comes up without any hitch," one official said.
The steps included providing employment to about 300 people belonging to the families who lost their land for the project. The sources said some more jobs were being created to accommodate the members from poor families whose DKT patta land [given free by the government to landless Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes with conditions on future sale and land use] had been acquired for the project. The uranium corporation also undertook welfare measures in the villages in the 15-km radius of the plant which included construction of schools, providing drinking water facilities, as well as medical aid.
The Tummulapalle uranium processing facility, which is in the final stages of completion, has got clearance from the Centre for the enhanced processing of the ore from the original 3,000 tonnes per day to 4,500 tonnes, although the plant has a capacity to process 6,000 tonnes a day.
According to the sources, the mine is expected to yield three times more uranium than what was earlier thought of. "Initially, it was estimated to produce 15,000 tonnes of uranium. It is now revised upward to 40,000-45,000 tonnes," they added.
(Times of India Oct. 24, 2010)
Tummalapalle mine to start producing uranium by year end 2010
The Tummalapalle mine in Andhra Pradesh is likely to start producing uranium by end of 2010 or early 2011, a top Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) official said today (Aug. 9). "Production is on at the Tummalapallee project... by 2010-11 we will start getting (Uranium) from Tummalapalle," AEC Chairman and Atomic Energy Secretary Srikumar Banerjee told reporters here. The project was initially estimated to produce 15,000 tonnes of uranium but was revised upward to 40,000 tonnes, he said, adding this was the first project in India to use the latest 'alkaline leaching process'.
(IBNLive Aug. 9, 2010)
Worker dies in blasting accident at Pulivendula uranium project
A worker was killed when a large boulder fell on him during blasting operations in the uranium project at Mabbuchinthalapalli in Vemula mandal in the early hours of Friday (Nov. 27).
(The Hindu Nov. 28, 2009)
Contract awarded for construction of uranium mill at Pulivendula project
Hindustan Dorr Oliver Ltd has announced that it has bagged a prestigious order for Uranium Ore Processing Plant from Uranium Corporation of India Ltd worth INR 4.41 billion [US$ 86.5 million] for their Greenfield Ore Mining and Processing facility of capacity 3000 [metric] tonne per day coming up at Tumalapalle in Andhra Pradesh on LSTK [lump sum turn key] basis.
The process plant shall adopt innovative Alkali Pressure Leaching process technology which will be used in India for the first time and Bateman of South Africa are Company's Technology partners for this project.
(SteelGuru Mar. 1, 2009)
Foundation stone laid for Tummalapalle uranium mine and mill, Cuddapah, Andhra Pradesh
On Aug. 10, 2008, Atomic Energy Commission chairman Anil Kakodkar laid foundation stone for the mine at Tummalapalle village in Kadapa.
The Uranium Corp of India Ltd (UCIL) is building the mine and mill at a cost of Rs 11.29 billion ($268.8 million). It would have a capacity to produce 150,000 tonnes of uranium a year [?!?].
The project would be completed "as early as possible", Kakodkar told reporters on the occasion.
He tried to allay apprehensions in some quarters that the mine would be harmful to environment and public health.
"We will take care of (people's) safety. There need be no apprehensions. It will have no impact on environment or people," said Kakodkar, who is also the secretary of the Department of Atomic Energy.
Several environmental groups have raised apprehensions that the mine would impact the environment and the health of people living in nearby villages. They alleged that several of their activists were beaten up by the police during the mandatory public hearing held in 2006, to silence their protest.
(The Economic Times Aug. 10, 2008)
Foundation stone to be laid for Tummalapalle uranium mine and mill, Cuddapah, Andhra Pradesh
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy will lay foundation stone for the Rs. 10.29-billion [US$ 261.7 million] uranium project at Thummalapalle in Vemula mandal on November 20, 2007.
(The Hindu Nov. 17, 2007)
India approves uranium mine and mill at Tummalapalle, Cuddapah, Andhra Pradesh
On Aug. 23, 2007, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) gave its approval for setting up of a uranium mine and processing plant at Tummalapalle, Cuddapah, Andhra Pradesh, at a total cost of 11.06 billion rupees ($269.9 million). The plant will be set up by the Uranium Corporation of India.
The mine is likely to be commissioned within 30 months and the processing plant in 36 months.
Indian government acquires land for Pulivendula uranium mine project
The development of the Tummalapalle uranium mine and mill project is expected to commence soon, after the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) gave its approval on Feb. 8, 2007, to deposit Rs 137 million [US$ 3.1 million] with the Andhra Pradesh government for the land acquisition.
The project involves the extraction of uranium from underground mines in 879 hectares spread over five villages - Mabbuchintalapalle, Thummalapalle, Rajukuntapalle, Bhoomayagaripalle and Kottala - in Vemula mandal in the Kadapa district.
UCIL expects to extract 3,000 tonnes of ore per day with a uranium concentration of 0.039 per cent. The mining project is estimated to cost Rs 10.3 billion ($ 224 million).
(Times of India Feb. 9, 2007)
Protests at public hearing on Pulivendula uranium mine project
More than 100 protestors were baton-charged and driven away by the police when they tried to prevent a public hearing on uranium mining in Pulivendula, Kadapa, on Sep. 10, 2006.
The mining project in Kadapa, estimated to cost Rs 10.3 billion [US$ 224 million], involves the extraction of uranium from underground mines in 879 hectares spread over five villages -- Mabbuchintalapalle, Thummalapalle, Rajukuntapalle, Bhoomayagaripalle and Kottala.
UCIL expects to extract 3,000 tonnes of ore per day.
The uranium concentration is very meagre at 0.039 per cent. The mines require 17.85 MW of power for extraction. The lifespan of the project is stated to be 30 years and its employment potential is just under a 1000 people.
(Rediff 11 Sep 2006)
In a press release, members of the NGO mines, minerals & People (mm&P) said "a public hearing based on irrelevant pronouncements is a mere formality and cannot be construed as obtaining the consent of people in a democratic manner."
Nearly a million tonnes of waste would have to be disposed off every year and "the design of the tailing pond is incremental, which can be disastrous."
They also questioned the need for taking up such mining in a densely populated area in the Kadapa district. "The Tummaplapalli Uranium Project will be in one of the densely inhabited regions, compared to the existing and proposed uranium mines in India and a deeper (and proper) inquiry into the environmental impact is called for".
According to them, over 12000 people in the region would be affected and they should not be exposed to radiation and other risks. They appealed to the Government to get the EIA done again, taking into account these aspects.
(The Hindu Business Line 11 Sep 2006)
In a note to the member secretary of the Andhra Pradesh Pollution Board, the Movement Against Uranium Project (MAUP) called the public hearing a "mockery" and said that it was a "private hearing rather than a public hearing". "The presence of large number of hired people brought from the villages not likely to be affected by the project, and prevention of those likely to be directly affected, are clear indications of the stage-managed environmental public hearing (EPH), with the collusion of the authorities concerned," said Capt J Rama Rao, convenor of MAUP, in the letter.
The MAUP has demanded that the Sunday's environment public hearing be treated as null and void and a fresh one be conducted after giving adequate notice, in a free and transparent manner under the supervision of an impartial body. The MAUP said that public hearing was the only legal space available to the people, under threat from large and environmentally sensitive projects, where they could raise their concerns.
"But unfortunately people of these villages likely to be affected by the uranium project have been denied this opportunity as they were not allowed to take part in the EPH of September 10," said Capt Rao.
(Deccan Herald 12 Sep 2006)
NGO criticizes EIA for Pulivendula uranium mine project, Andhra Pradesh
The Movement Against Uranium Projects (MAUP) has opposed the proposal of Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL) to set up a uranium project at Thummalapalle in Kadapa district, saying that it will do more harm than good to the present and future generations.
Addressing a press conference on Sep. 5, 2006, MAUP convener J. Rama Rao said the project to mine alkaline uranium ore was neither technically feasible nor financially viable.
He alleged that the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report for the project did not qualify to be a full report as the baseline data measurement was limited only to winter as against all three seasons required for such a report.
As per the EIA report, the mine was expected to last for 30 years with a capacity of 3,000 tonnes per day from the fourth year of production. However, the average quality of the ore was very low -- only 0.04 per cent.
He said that mining and processing of the ore would invariably contaminate air, soil, underground and surface water despite all claims of environment management. It was an 'anti-people' project incurring heavy social and environmental costs.
A public hearing is scheduled to be held at Thummalapalle on September 10, 2006.
He said that new technology was proposed to be adopted as the uranium ore at Thummalapalle was alkaline. The underground mine leasehold area of 879 hectares belonged to five villages but there was no mention of the number of houses to be acquired and the extent of displacement of the families.
It also proposed to acquire land of which, 49.85 per cent was under cultivation, and develop green belt in only 40 per cent of it.
(The Hindu, Sep. 6, 2006)
UCIL is planning second uranium mine project in Andhra Pradesh at Pulivendula
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Rajasekhara Reddy announced that there will be not one but two uranium mines in the state very soon. The Pulivendula project might even take precedence over the Lampapur-Peddagattu project in Nalgonda.
(NDTV Feb. 10, 2006)