Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) is putting up a 5000 cubic meter per day (5.0 MLD) seawater desalination plant in Odisha’s coastal district of Ganjam, adjacent to Gopalpur, through MoU mode between Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) and Indian Rare Earths Limited (IREL), a Public Sector Undertaking under DAE. A 6300 cubic meter per day (6.3 MLD) Nuclear Seawater Desalination plant has already been commissioned and is in operation at Kalpakkam, Chennai along Bay of Bengal in IGCAR, DAE premises which is in operation since 2002 and now also is in operation at designed capacity and availability factor. The site at Ganjam district, Odisha has been considered since it is located on the coastline of Bay of Bengal (only 750 meters away from shore line) and a drought prone zone facing acute water shortage. There is no proposal at present to set up desalination plant in coastal area of Maharashtra. Capacity of the plant at Odisha is 5000 m3/day (5.0 MLD) at a cost of Rs 112.90 crore.
Necessary financial sanction of Rs 112.90 crore has been issued by the Government for the OSCOM plant. All the statutory clearances, namely, OSPCB (Odisha State Pollution Control Board), MoEF-CRZ (Ministry of Environment & Forests- Coastal Regulation Zone), AERB (Atomic Energy Regulatory Board) are obtained and MoU between BARC and IREL has been signed.