The Indian Government has set up a ministerial committee to set boundaries for 193 coal blocks falling in ‘no-go’ forest areas.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh established the committee during the Union Cabinet meeting on 14 January.

Coal Minister Sriprakash Jaiswal said that mining in the areas will increase the supply of coal for the energy sector and provide energy security in an environmentally sustainable manner.

According to the prohibition designed by India’s environment ministry, areas with over 30% gross forest cover or 10% or more in weighted forest cover are out of bounds for coal mining.