Promoting Eco-Tourism in mining areas
Mining areas, after exhaustion of coal reserves, offer good potential for promoting tourism by developing eco-parks, sites for water sports, underground visits, golf grounds, avenues for recreation, adventure, bird watching etc.Over the years, coal companies have developed more than 15 eco-parks by undertaking sustainable mine closure practices. These mining sites are now stable, environmentally sustainable and present a very beautiful site aesthetically.
Some of these sites have already been integrated with local tourism circuit and coal companies are consulting the respective State tourism departments for integrationof other parks. These sites are expected to generate revenue for self-sustenance and create employment potential for local people.
Development of eco-parks/tourism sites to promote mine tourism is one of the key thrust areas of SDC Cell of MoC and coal companies. In coming 3-4 years, it has been envisaged to create 10 new eco-parks/tourism sites and take up expansion of 4 existing eco-parks. The sites for eco-parks have been identified and process has already been initiated by coal companies. It is expected that following 4 parks will be completed in 2021-22:
Modwani water body and Eco-Park in Madhya Pradesh is being developed by Northern Coalfields Limited near Jayant Open Cast Mine (Singrauli) covering an area of 8.5 Ha. The site is being developed to create recreational facility for nearby area and to promote tourism. Major facilities being created are development of garden, internal road, Children's Park equipment, Rest shelter, Cafeteria, water fountain, boating facilities, electrification, parking etc.
Govardhan Eco-ParkandAshok Eco-Parkin Jharkhand (Dhanbad) are being developed by BCCL in Bera and Kuya Colliery respectively. The area of Govardhan Eco-park is 7.5 Ha and that of Ashok Eco-park is 2.5 Ha. These sites are being developed to create recreational facility for nearby area and to promote tourism. Major facilities being created are development of Water Body, Water Fountain, Children Park, Flower Garden & Artistic Shrub Work, Green Tunnel, Prayer Room, Meditation Hall, Cafeteria, Walkways garden, internal road, Rest shelter, parking etc.
Mine-II Eco-Park in Tamil Nadu is being developed by NLCIL in Cuddalore district covering an area of 10 Ha. The Eco-park is being developed by converting the mine site into a lake surrounded by park and greeneries. Key features of attraction will be Water body, Boating Facility, grass land, resting benches, Dense Natural Plantation, Children's Park equipment, bird watching zone etc.