THRISSUR: There is no dearth of examples to substantiate the observations made the other day by Sukumar Azhikode - 'expert opinions are often untrue, farce' - while inaugurating dharna against the proposed Athirappilly hydroelectric project here.

An example is the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) on the project which was carried out by Water and Power Consultency Services Private Limited (WAPCOS), Hariyana.

The Kerala State Electricity Board had assigned the study to WAPCOS on October 8, 2002 and the consultants submitted the study report to KSEB next year.

PALAKKAD: The grama panchayats should prepare plans for the development of watersheds in their respective areas and seek approval if they want it to be implemented under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS), according to District Collector K S Sreenivas.

Each watershed area should be considered as a unit and agriculture, irrigation, animal husbandry and social forestry activities should be undertaken jointly so that productivity is increased.

WADAKKANCHERRY: Kalamandalam Vice- Chancellor K G Poulose has called upon the people of Kerala to protect rivers in the state.

Speaking at a discussion on

PATHANAMTHITTA: District Collector P C Sanalkumar said on Wednesday that a task force was set up to check the spread of Hepatitis A in the district.

Addressing a meeting to discuss measures to control the spread of Hepatitis A, the Collector said that as part of the programme, water sources would be chlorinated. To ensure the successful implementation of the preventive measures, the assistance of health workers, voluntary agencies, Literacy Mission and Kudumbasree Mission would be utilised.

THIRUVANANTHAPURA: The Water Policy-2008 announced by the LDF Government on Monday envisages provisions like 'polluter pays' for preventing water pollution. Those who pollute water will be made to pay a fine according under the policy. Another thrust area of the policy tabled by Water Resources Minister N.K. Premachandran in the Assembly on Monday, is the announcement of recycle and reuse policy for drainage water.

PALAKKAD: The technical advisory committee of the Central Water Commission has approved a Rs 30 crore scheme for the extension and modernisation of the Kanhirapuzha irrigation canal.

The project had been included under the Prime Ministers' agriculture package for drought-hit areas. The State Government has also accorded the financial concurrence so that the Rs 30 crore modernisation scheme secures the investment clearance of the Planning Commission.

PATHANAMTHITTA: Agriculture Minister Mullakara Ratnakaran said on Saturday that around 1,000 hectares of unused paddy fields would be brought under cultivation soon.

Presiding over a high-level meeting on the intensive paddy cultivation programme convened at the collectorate conference hall here, Mullakara said that 2,891 hectares of paddy fields remained unused in the district.

KOCHI: Are windmills eco-friendly? Of course, in plains, but not in High Ranges where they pose serious threat to the Earth.

Attappadi hills are the telltale example. It is one of the two sites where windmills are being set up for power generation in the state.

The other being Ramakkalmedu in Idukki district. Apart from these, 16 sites have also been identified for windmills in Kerala.

Kerala does not have much hope on the proposed Athirappally hydroelectric project even if the environment committee panel headed by Madhav Gadgil visits the area on January 29 to make an on-the-spot study again.

Though Union Minister of State for Forest and Environment Jairam Ramesh said the final decision on the clearance for the project will be taken after the committee submits its report, th

KOCHI: Blame it on the lackadaisical attitude of the civic body of Kochi and the health department of the city. Sheer negligence on the part of the authorities has paved the way for the leakage of the biogas plant at Ernakulam Market.