Impact of Climate Change in Mining Region –A
Case Study

Prasoon Kumar Singh1, Ruchi Singh2 Dipanwita Bhakat3 and Gurdeep Singh4

Centre of Mining Environment, Department of Environmental Science & Engineering,
Indian School of Mines, Dhanbad-826 004, Jharkhand, India
1E-mail: pks0506@yahoo.co.in

Abstract

Climate change affects the mining region both directly and indirectly; and among the different environmental impacts of mining a very prominent one is damage to water resources. If mining is conducted below water table, ground water flows into the excavation site. It needs excessive ground water withdrawal that creates lowering of water table and resource depletion in the surrounding region. Water availability is dependent on rainfall. Subsurface reservoirs or aquifers are a blessing of nature to ensure water availability. The distribution pattern of the groundwater resources are influenced by the geomorphology, topography, terrain characteristics, geo-tectonic disturbances, characteristic of the source, recharging zones etc. Of late, this valuable resource is getting affected and progressively depleted by the change of climatic conditions.  Talcher coalfield of Mahanadi Coalfield (MCL) - a subsidiary of Coal India Limited is one of the important coal-bearing regions in Orissa. One major river i.e., Brahmani river is passing in the NE direction of the Talcher area. Jharia Coalfield occupies an important place in India’s industrial and energy scenario by virtue of being the storehouse of Prime coking coal. Damodar is main river passing over southwest direction of Jharia coalfield. The  paper focuses on the impact of climate change on the changing pattern in respect of the characteristics of geology, rainfall and water-table fluctuations of both the Talcher and Jharia coalfields in the study area.