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The company's application would be vetted on January 19 by the expert appraisal committee of the Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change (MoEFCC).
The Pottangi bauxite mining lease is set to have an annual capacity of 3.5 million tonnes per annum (mtpa). The Pottangi mines with 75 million tonnes bauxite reserve would feed Nalco's new refinery of one million tonne capacity planned at Damanjodi.
Nalco has firmed up an investment of Rs 56 billion for adding a fifth stream to the Damanjodi refinery whose current capacity stands at 2.275 million tonnes per annum (mtpa). The expansion plan has already been cleared by the High-Level Clearance Authority (HLCA), the highest body to approve investments in Odisha.
Until the time the Pottangi lease is opened up, Nalco would source bauxite from the Panchpatmalli South bauxite mine. The navratna company has opened the new bauxite mine with an annual mining capacity of 3.1 million tonnes per annum. The aluminium major has invested Rs 6 billion on this mine.
According to Nalco’s chairman & managing director (CMD) TK Chand, the new mine would fully cater to the company’s expansion needs till the Pottangi mines commence operations. Nalco has bagged the Pottangi mines with 75 million tonnes reserves. The mine was awarded to Nalco to cater to its alumina refinery expansion at Damanjodi in Koraput district.