The Forest Advisory Committee of the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change has recommended granting Stage-I forest clearance to the captive mines
of Neelachal Ispat Nigam Ltd
(NINL). The iron ore
mines are situated in Koira, in Odisha's Sundergarh and Keonjhar districts.
A mining lease with NINL was executed on January 11, 2017 after obtaining necessary approval from the Odisha government.
The mines have reserves of 102 million tonnes or ore and are spread over 874 hectares. In November 2016, the ministry had granted environment clearance with a proposed production capacity of two million tonnes per annum (mtpa).
NINL will now need to comply with certain stipulations to obtain final (Forest Stage-II) clearance, following which it can commence mining operations with a capacity of two million ton per annum. The availability of iron ore
to its own steel plant would enhance NINL's financial position and ensure further expansion of its 1.1 mtpa plant.