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The Goa government will not allow more coal to be handled at Mormugao Port Trust until companies involved in its transportation come out with technology to control the pollution caused by the fossil fuel's movement, Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar said today.
Parrikar's statement comes in the backdrop of protests by a section of people against pollution caused by coal transportation in the coastal state. The protests are being held under the banner of 'Goa Against Coal.
A delegation of protesters had earlier met the chief minister and demanded closure of the coal handling facility at Mormugao Port Trust (MPT).
"The government is not in favour of any more expansion of the coal handling facility at MPT. We have started efforts to control the amount of coal handled at the port," he told reporters here.
The government has already reduced the coal handling capacity at the port by 25 per cent, he said.
To a question about the pollution caused due to coal transportation and open handling of the commodity, Parrikar claimed, "It is already under control."
"Protests should be against coal pollution and not against movement of coal," the CM said.
Pollution levels in Vasco town, where MPT is located, are now within permissible limit, he said.
Parrikar said the government has already written to companies transporting coal to come out with technology on clean handling of the fuel.
Parrikar said such a technology exists in Europe which allows handling of coal without causing any pollution.
MPT has leased out its coal handling facility to two companies - Adani Murmugao Port Terminal Pvt Ltd (AMPTPL) and South West Port Ltd (SWPL).
Adani Murmugao handles about 5.2 million tonnes of coal annually and SWPL 7.2 million tonnes.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)