Rajasthan Vidyut Utpadan Nigam (RVUNL) has received approval from the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change in India to start mining at Parsa coal block at Surguja in Chhattisgarh.

The Parsa coal block is estimated to have a supply capacity of 2.7 rake coal per day and a production capacity of five million tonnes of coal annually.

Rajasthan energy additional chief secretary Subodh Agarwal was cited by TNN as saying: “The state is estimated to get 1,000 rakes annually from the Parsa coal block. The mine has reserves of 150 million tonne coal and can produce until 30 years.”

According to Rajasthan Energy Minister B D Kalla, the Parsa coal mine was allotted in 2015 to the state.

However, mining activities at the mine, which covers an area of more than 841.53ha, could not be carried out as there was no environmental approval.

Kalla was reported by the news agency as saying: “We created pressure by submitting the bio-diversity study report and as a result, the mine got the clearance.”

The Parsa coal block is located contiguous to Parsa East and Kete Basin, where the state already sources coal for its power plants.

The Environment Ministry is due to issue permits for the start of phase-II of the PEKB mines.

Kalla was further quoted as saying: “We have put pressure on the centre to give environment clearance to the phase-II area of PEKB which is spread over 1,136ha.

“We expect to get the clearance very soon. After that there will be no shortage of coal at the power plants.”