January 30, 2017 Read More →

Clashes in Bangladesh Over New Coal Plant

From Reuters:

Police used tear gas and water cannons on Thursday to disperse demonstrators protesting against a coal-fired power plant they say will damage ecologically sensitive mangrove forest and disrupt the lives of thousands.

UNESCO last year sought the relocation of the 1320MW power plant from the 742-hectare site where it is being built, saying it posed a risk to the nearby Sundarbans, the world’s largest mangrove forest and a World Heritage site.

Police said about 200 protesters took to the streets in the center of Dhaka, while campaigners said more than 50 activists were injured in clashes.

Campaigners said the plant, a joint venture between state-run entities Bangladesh Power Development Board and India’s NTPC Ltd, would disrupt the livelihoods of about half a million people and make millions more vulnerable to natural disasters.

“This is a suicidal project,” said Anu Mohammad of activist group the National Committee to Protect Oil, Gas, Mineral Resources, Power and Ports, which called for an eight-hour general strike in Dhaka on Thursday.

The government has indicated it is unlikely to abandon a push to build more coal-fired power plants, despite growing opposition from residents and environmentalists.

Full article: Protests in Dhaka against Sundarbans site of NTPC coal-fired power venture