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/Lignite PSUs have developed more than 30 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 integration of other parks. These sites are expected to generate revenue for self-sustenance and create employment potential for local people.
• NLCIL signed MOU with Pondicherry Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) on 05.10.2022 to promote eco-tourism at Mine-I and Mine-II and showcase sustainable mining activities.
• NCL signed MOU with Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board to boost Singrauli Eco-Tourism Circuit.
• WCL signed MOU with Directorate of Tourism, Maharashtra to promote Eco-tourism.
Development of eco-parks/tourism sites to promote mine tourism is one of the key thrust areas of S & JT Division of MoC and coal companies. Coal/Lignite PSUs has created 15 Eco-parks/Mine Tourism sites in last 5 years (during FY 2019-20 to FY 2023-24 (till October, 2023)in an area of more than 111 ha area of land and integrated 7 nos. of parks with local tourism circuit. In coming 4-5 years, it has been envisaged to create 19 new eco-parks/tourism sites. The sites for eco-parks have been identified and process has already been initiated by coal companies.
Foundation stone of 2 Eco-parks: -
1.Jhanjra Eco-Park of ECL in Pachim Bardhaman, West Bengal
2.Chandrashekhar Azad Orient UG No. 4 Eco-Park of MCL in Jharsuguda, Odisha