Application Of Environment Protection Act For Tata Steel Accounting Essay

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About Tata Steel

"Tata Steel produces steel using an integrated steel-making concept, utilising raw materials like iron ore, coal, limestone etc. to produce hot metal (liquid iron). This hot metal is converted into steel through a steelmaking process. The liquid steel is then cast and rolled into a variety of products. Tata Steel`s Jamshedpur (India) Works has a crude steel production capacity of 6.8 mtpa. The Company also has proposed three Greenfield steel projects in the states of Jharkhand, Orissa and Chhattisgarh in India with and a Greenfield project in Vietnam. In addition to Steel Works, the Group has significant operations to support its steelmaking activities, including mines and collieries. The iron ore mines and collieries in India give the Company a distinct advantage in raw material sourcing. The Flat Product business in India is dominated by five big companies. Tata Steel ranks second in terms of size with about 18% market share. The Long Product business, in contrast, is highly fragmented. In this market, Tata Steel has positioned itself to meet the needs of quality conscious, discerning customers. They comprise large reputed infrastructure project companies. [1] "


"Tata Steel aspires to be the global steel industry benchmark for Value Creation and Corporate Citizenship. [2] "


"Consistent with the vision and values of the founder Jamsetji Tata, Tata Steel strives to strengthen India's industrial base through the effective utilization of staff and materials. The means envisaged to achieve this are high technology and productivity, consistent with modern management practices. Tata Steel recognizes that while honesty and integrity are the essential ingredients of a strong and stable enterprise, profitability provides the main spark for economic activity. Overall, the Company seeks to scale the heights of excellence in all that it does in an atmosphere free from fear, and thereby reaffirms its faith in democratic values. [3] "

Environment, Health and Safety

"The independent third party audits are conducted by M/s. IRQS for divisions certified to Environmental Management System, ISO 14001:2004 and Occupational Health and Safety Management System, OHSAS 18001:1999 once a year. [4] "


"Social audits are conducted once every 10 years by a bench of external, independent auditors comprising eminent individuals from the judiciary, social organisations and financial institutions, appointed by Tata Steel's Board of Directors. The last audit was conducted in 2004. [5] "

Health, Safety and Environment Risks

The manufacture of steel involves steps that are potentially hazardous and which are likely to cause disruptions to normal operations if not executed with due care. The Company's businesses are subject to numerous laws, regulations and contractual commitments relating to health, safety and the environment in the countries in which Health, Safety & Environmental Risks: it operates. These rules are becoming more stringent. The Group has set specific goals to be achieved by 2012 in the areas of CO2 emissions (1.5 tonnes per tonne of liquid steel) and LTIF (below 0.4). For the sustainability of its operations, the "Process Safety & Risk Management" (PSRM) programme has been started for the high hazard operations and processes, in order to ensure freedom from high consequence, low frequency process incidents. PSRM will be implemented in all facilities by FY` 12.

Business Risk

Key Stakeholder

Performance Indicator



CO2 Emissions

Community, Government, Customers, NGOs

Specific CO2 emission excluding:

Imported Elect + Mobile + HFC (t/tcs)



Energy Efficiency

NGOs, Community, Government

The specific energy consumption of the integrated iron and steel works at Jamshedpur in GJoule/Tonne of Crude Steel



Water Management

NGOs, Community, Government

Water Consumption in million m3 / Annum



Waste Management

NGOs, Community, Government

% of generation indicating the quantity of the waste generated that was utilized








Number of fatal accidents (Employees + Contractors)



Steel Production Process

The following flow charts give a snapshot of the supply chain involved in the production of flat and long products produced using steel. This representation would help us identify sources of non-compliance with Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 at a later stage. [6] 

Flat Products

Long Products

Balanced Scorecard for Tata Steel

The evaluation of the performance of TATA Steel can be done with the help of a balanced score card as portrayed below.

The score card also highlights the importance of sustainability and how it is linked with the internal business process perspective for TATA Steel.

One of the corporate objectives within the internal business perspective is to ensure safety and environment sustainability. The metric that could be used to measure performance with respect to this objective would be the corporate citizenship index. [7] 

Scope of the application of EPA, 1986 for Tata Steel

In this project we will study the effect of provisions of Environmental Protection Act on the operations of Tata Steel all over India, since EPA is applicable to all the parts of the country.

To understand the operations of Tata Steel in India let us try to understand the market, services and products of Tata Steel in India.


Market Segments

Key Customers

Long Products

Large Construction projects

L&T, AFCONS, DLF, Gammon, HCC, individual house builders etc.

Flat Products

Auto, Construction industries, General Engineering, Appliances, Industry and housing applications

Tata Motors, Ashok Leyland,

Toyota, Honda, Ford, Maruti,

Hyundai, Bajaj, TVS


Ferro Alloys, Agriculture Implements, Services like project studies, design & engineering, personnel and technical training, automation, Information Technology, power and water

Landholdings - Tata Steel has acquired land for its operations in Jharkhand, Orissa, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal and Tamil Nadu

Ecosystem Services affected by Tata Steel

There are four aspects of ecosystem services: -





Each aspect and how it Tata Steel uses services provided by nature is described below:-

Provisioning -

Tata steel depends on nature to obtain resources which are necessary for the manufacture its products. Some of the prominent ones are: -

Freshwater - freshwater is required in production process of Steel for cooling, cleaning, etc.

Fuel - Fuel is primarily required by Tata Steel for producing energy in the form of heat, electricity etc.

Regulating -

The top two priorities for ecosystem services are:-

Climate Regulation

Water Regulation

The amount of greenhouse gases emitted by Tata Steel is huge. Table below indicates estimate of the greenhouse gases produced by Tata Steel.



Emissions from Stationary Combustion/Process Comubustion

12,859,606 t

Crude Steel Production


Specific CO2 Production

2.28 t/tcs

As we can see the amount of CO2 released by Tata Steel in environment is huge. Besides CO2 other gases emitted by Tata Steel are Sulphur Dioxide, Oxides of Nitrogen and Particulate matter to the tune of about 5333, 5603 and 4703 tpa respectively. Therefore regulating the emission of greenhouse gases is priority for Tata Steel.

Besides greenhouse gas emissions, company should also pay attention on its water consumption patterns. In 2008-09 the water consumed by Tata Steel was 37.13 million m3/ annum an increase of around 6.1% from 2007-08. High consumption of water by the company would affect the local communities adversely.

Also the large amount of greenhouse gases emitted by the company as well has high consumption of water may not bode well with the Government which may affect the operations of Tata Steel in all the parts of country.

Biodiversity -

There are no sensitive areas defined by EPA, 1986 within a radius of 10KM of company's operations. Hence protecting biodiversity is not a priority for a company when compared to climate regulation or water regulation.

Impact of Environment Protection Act on Economic Value Added (EVA)

"EVA is the calculation of what profits remain after the costs of a company's capital - both debt and equity - are deducted from operating profit. The idea is simple but rigorous: true profit should account for the cost of capital. [8] "

Non-compliance to the procedures and the environment standards mentioned by the Government (like non-compliance to guidelines formed according to Section 3(3) of EPA 1986) may result in penalties, delay in start of the project, stoppage of work in a factory etc. which will affect the bottom line.

By linking corporate social responsibility to value based management, a more consistent framework arises; people, planet and profit. [9] 


EVA formulation






EVA = (VA/ton - C/ton)*ton

There are four steps in the calculation of EVA:

1. Calculation of Net Operating Profit after Tax (NOPAT)

2. Calculation of Total Invested Capital (TC)

3. Determination of Cost of Capital (WACC). Both Cost of equity and cost of debt are taken into account.

4. Calculation of EVA = NOPAT - WACC% * (TC)

In other words, EVA = Turnover - Operating Expenses - Capital Costs

Operating Expense include wages, material, general expenditure, depreciation and taxes.

A company's potential cash earnings if its capitalization were unleveraged (that is, if it had no debt). NOPAT is frequently used in economic value added (EVA) calculations.

Calculated as:

NOPAT = Operating Income x (1 - Tax Rate)

A calculation of a firm's cost of capital in which each category of capital is proportionately weighted. All capital sources - common stock, preferred stock, bonds and any other long-term debt - are included in a WACC calculation. All else equal, the WACC of a firm increases as the beta and rate of return on equity increases, as an increase in WACC notes a decrease in valuation and a higher risk.

The WACC equation is the cost of each capital component multiplied by its proportional weight and then summing: 


Re = cost of equity 

Rd = cost of debt 

E = market value of the firm's equity 

D = market value of the firm's debt 

V = E + D 

E/V = percentage of financing that is equity 

D/V = percentage of financing that is debt 

Tc = corporate tax rate 

The amount of profit realized from a business's operations after taking out operating expenses - such as cost of goods sold (COGS) or wages - and depreciation. Operating income takes the gross income (revenue minus COGS) and subtracts other operating expenses and then removes depreciation. These operating expenses are costs which are incurred from operating activities and include things such as office supplies and heat and power. Operating Income is typically a synonym for earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) and is also commonly referred to as "operating profit" or "recurring profit". 

Calculated as:

How Non-Compliance with Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 affects economic value added for TATA Steel

Non- Compliance with Section 6, section 7 and section 8 of EPA, 1986

According to Section 6:

Compliance with the following is must:

Standards of quality of air, water or soil

Maximum allowable limits of environmental pollutants

Procedures and safeguards for the handling of hazardous substances

Prohibition and restrictions on handling of hazardous substances

Prohibition and restriction on location of industries

Procedures and safeguards for prevention of accidents which may cause environmental pollution

According to section 7 of EPA, 1986:

No person carrying on any industry, operation or process shall discharge or emit or permit to be discharged or emitted any environmental pollutants in excess of such standards as may be prescribed.

According to section 8 of EPA, 1986:

No person shall handle or cause to be handled any hazardous substance except in accordance with such procedure and after complying with such safeguards as may be prescribed.

Non-compliance with the above mentioned provisions leads to application of section 15 and Section 5 of EPA, 1986. The penalty imposed under section 15 calls for:

Imprisonment of the person who contravenes the provision for a term which may extend to five years

Fine which may extend to 1 lakh rupees or with both and in case the failure of contravention continues, with additional fine which may extend to Rs. 5000 for every day during which such failure or contravention continues after the conviction for the first such failure or contravention

Also, section 5 gives central government the power to give directions like:

Closure, prohibition or regulation of any industry, operation or process

Stoppage or regulation of supply of electricity or water or any other service

EVA parameters affected due to above penalties can be found in the metrics below


EVA Parameters

Imprisonment of the person

Turnover, Operating Expense


Operating Expense

Closure, prohibition or regulation of any industry, operation or process

Turnover, WACC

Stoppage or regulation of supply of electricity or water or any other service

Turnover, WACC

Imprisonment of the Person:

The person who used to be in charge of generating revenue for the organization would not be available for a fixed term and even if a replacement is found for him, the momentum of the organization in terms of generating sales would be lost. Even in case a replacement is found, he would ask for higher pay because of him having greater bargaining power compared to the organization. This would increase the wage bill and hence operating expenses for TATA Steel.


It would increase the general expenses for the organization and hence increases the operating expense for TATA Steel.

Closure and Stoppage:

Closure will directly send the turnover of the organization to very low levels. It also sends out a negative signal to potential debtors and hence they would be in a position to charge a higher cost of debt which increases WACC for the TATA Steel and hence reduces EVA.

Analysis of Supreme Court cases pertaining to Environment Protection Act, 1986

Analysis of Supreme Court cases directly related to the EPA, 1986 for the last 10 years has been presented below. It has to be noted that only those cases in which direct violation of some important sections of the EPA, 1986 have been presented below.

Analysis of these cases would help us arrive at the extent to which non-compliance would affect the EVA of TATA Steel.

Non-Compliance with Section 7 and Section 8 of Environment (protection) Act, 1986:

Deepak Nitrite Ltd vs State Of Gujarat & Ors [10] 

"These appeals arise out of a series of orders made by the High Court of Gujarat. A petition was filed before the High Court in public interest alleging large scale pollution caused by industries located in the Gujarat Industrial Development Corporation (GIDC) Industrial Estate at Nandesari. It is alleged that effluents discharged by the said industries into the effluent treatment project had exceeded certain parameters fixed by the Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) thereby causing damage to the environment. Some of the industries have set up their own effluent treatment plants in their factory premises, while some of them have not. The High Court, by an order made on 17.4.1995, directed that the chemical industries in Nandesari should be made parties to the proceedings thereby 252 industrial units located in the Nandesari Industrial Estate, Baroda were made parties to the proceedings, apart from the State of Gujarat, Central Pollution Control Board, Gujarat Industrial Development Corporation and Nandesari Industries Association. The High Court also issued notices to the financial institutions or banks in respect of these proceedings. On May 5, 1995 the High Court appointed a Committee under the Chairmanship of Dr. V.V. Modi to ascertain the position with regard to the extent of pollution in Nandesari Industrial Estate. A Common Effluent Treatment Plant (CETP) was erected by the GIDC in Nandesari Industrial Estate on the contribution made by the industrial units in the Nandesari Industrial Estate to the extent of about Rs. 300 lakhs. Inasmuch as CETP was not achieving the required parameters laid down by the GPCB, the High Court, by an order made on 7.8.1996, appointed NEERI as a consultant to assess the treatment facilities and to provide suitable rectification measures for upgrading the CETP and effluent treatment plant facilities. Dr.Committee made a report on 7.9.1996. The High Court restrained several industries from removing their products from their plant without prior permission of the High Court and thereafter, by an order made on 13.9.1996, the High Court permitted them to dispatch materials by depositing a certain sum of money which was the value of the materials. NEERI submitted its report on 31.10.1996. The High Court, while granting permission to some of the industries to carry on their activities, called for turnover figures and profitability data. On 9.5.1997 the High Court passed an order directing the industries to pay 1% of the maximum annual turnover of any of the preceding three years towards compensation and betterment of environment within a stipulated time. It is against this order that the appellants are before us.

Appellants have submitted that a court has no power to either impose penalty or fine or make any levy for general betterment unless the statute authorized the same; that, however, in awarding damages it is permissible to make the same exemplary or penal; that award of damages is way of restitution for the damage caused to victims and for restoration or restitution and for restoration of ecology by way of punishment; that, unless a finding is given by the High Court that there had been degradation of environment, question of restitution or awarding damages could not arise; that there is no finding of degradation of environment and, therefore, it is not open to the High Court to impose 1% of the turnover by way of damages. The appellants relied upon a decision of this Court in Vellore Citizens' Welfare Forum vs. Union of India & Ors., 1996 (5) SCC 647, in support of this contention. Their argument is that principle of 'polluter to pay' cannot be applied unless a finding has been given that the industrial unit concerned is the polluter. In what manner pollution has been caused should have been ascertained, particularly when a separate common effluent treatment plant had been erected and a channel was provided through which water would flow into river which would reach the sea thereby not causing any damage anywhere. They seek to bring about difference between Pravinbhai Jashbhai Patel's case (supra) and the present proceedings to contend that in those cases there was direct evidence of damage having taken place and by way of rule of thumb the High Court adopted the standard of 1% of turnover to be paid by way of damages and that this principle cannot always uniformly be applied. They commend us to apply the principle set out by this Court in Vellore Citizens' Welfare Forum's case (supra) wherein principle of 'polluter to pay' has been applied and wherein it is noticed that any principle evolved in this behalf should be simple, practical and suited to the conditions obtaining in this country; once the activity carried on is hazardous or inherently dangerous, the person carrying on such activity is liable to make good the loss caused to any other person by his activity irrespective of the fact whether he took reasonable care while carrying on his activity; consequently, the polluting industries are absolutely liable to compensate for the harm caused by them to villagers in the affected areas, to the soil and to the underground water and hence, they are bound to take all necessary measures to remove sludge and other pollutants lying in the affected areas; that the 'polluter pays principle' as interpreted by this Court means that the absolute liability for harm to the environment extends not only to compensate the victims of pollution but also the cost of restoring the environmental degradation; that remediation of the damaged environment is part of the process of sustainable development and as such the polluter is liable to pay the cost to the individual sufferers as well as the cost of reversing the damaged ecology."


The High Court mentioned that through its investigation either by Committee appointed by itself or expert agency like NEERI found that the industrial units in question were polluting units and had not conformed with the norms prescribed by GPCB and each of the units were discharging effluents into the effluent channel project constructed by GIDC which in turn discharged the effluents into the Mahi river which ultimately reached sea. Thus the High Court had found that there was extensive environmental degradation as a result of the pollution because of the violation of the pollution laws and on account of such damage, the High Court ordered a payment of one percent compensation as a one-time payment for pollution and damage for a number of years from 1993 to 1996. He further submitted that in no case the High Court ordered compensation without giving a finding that there was environmental degradation and damage as a result of violation of prescribed norms.

The fact that the industrial units in question have not conformed to the standards prescribed by GPCB cannot be seriously disputed in these cases. But the question is whether that circumstance by itself can lead to the conclusion that such lapse has caused damage to environment. No finding is given on that aspect which is necessary to be ascertained because compensation to be awarded must have some broad co-relation not only with the magnitude and capacity of the enterprise but also with the harm caused by it. 

Thus, High court was asked to look into the matter and look into the damages caused by the industries by not complying with the standards. It was left open to the High Court to consider whether one percent of the turnover itself would be an appropriate formula or not as applicable to the present cases.

Application of the verdict for TATA Steel

The current turnover (2009-2010) of TATA Steel is Rs. 25,857 Crores. [11] 

1% of this turnover would be approximately Rs. 259 Crores.

Now, EVA = Turnover - Operating Expenses - Capital Costs

EVA of TATA Steel for 2009-2010 is approximately Rs 3709.2 Crores

Now, 1% reduction in turnover would reduce EVA by 259 Crores or 7%.

So, a penalty of 1% reduced turnover gets magnified 7 times in EVA calculation leading to a decrease in EVA of 7%. EVA is one of the popular financial metrics tracked by investors. Now, a 7% reduction in EVA sends out a negative signal about TATA Steel in the stock market, which could lead to a reduction in the price of the stock and also value erotion for the shareholders.

2. Section 3(3) of Environment (Protection) Act, 1986

T.N. Godavaraman Thirumulpad v. Union of India and Ors. [12] 

"Setting up of Central Empowered Committee (CEC) - Recommendations by CEC for payment of Net Present Value (NPV) on the basis of classification of forest made by it for diversion of forest - Held: Recommendations accepted - It is made clear that the NPV rates so fixed would hold good for a period of three years and subject to verification after three years - The exemptions recommended are also accepted - If, in any case, exemption is required by nature of peculiar circumstances of the case, the same would be decided as and when necessary on a case to case basis."

Application of the verdict for TATA Steel

Section 3(3) of EPA, 1986 empowers committees appointed by the Central Government to exercise certain powers and privileges under the ambit of EPA. In case, TATA Steel acquires forest land for business purpose, it has to comply with the orders of such committee appointed by the Central Government. Non-compliance would lead to penalty under section 15 of EPA. This again will affect the EVA by affecting sales turnover or operating expense.

3. Section 3(1) and 3(2) of EPA, 1986


"The appellant, Secretary of the Goa Foundation, Dr Claude Alvares filed the writ petition before the High Court as a Public Interest Litigation, objecting to the construction of a hotel on a plot of land situated in the area of Nagorcem, Palolem, Taluka- Cancona, Goa, inter alia, on the ground that the land in question comes within CRZ-I, and as such it is not permissible to have any construction on the same plot of land. It was also contended that the plan and sanction obtained for such construction from the competent authority, are in contravention of the provisions of the Environment (Protection) Act and such permission has been granted by theconcerned authority without application of mind and without considering the relevant materials, and, therefore, theCourt should issue mandamus, injuncting the hotelier- Diksha Holdings Pvt. Ltd., from constructing the proposed hotel on the disputed plot of land. It was also contended before the High Court that there exist large number of sand dunes and by permitting the respondent to have the hotel complex on the plot of land will ultimately lead to irreversible ecological damage of the coastal area, and, therefore, theCourt should prevent such construction. The High Court in the impugned judgment, took into consideration the balancing task of maintaining and preserving the environment and ecology of the pristine beach with sand dunes and the development of hotels and holiday resorts for economical development of the State. It also took into account several Acts and Regulations like Town and Country Planning Act, the CRZ Notification, the Coastal Zone Management Plan. It also took into account the approval of the Ministry of Environment and Forest, under which the disputed hotel complex comes as CRZ-III, the Court also took into account the Expert Committees recommendations, recommending the hotel project for environmental clearance, indicating therein that the existing sand dunes will not be disturbed in any manner and also the fact that the Goa Foundation hadhttp: submitted its representation to the Ministry of Environmentand forest, objecting to the construction of the hotel at the disputed location.

Assailing the impugned judgment of the High Court Dr.Claude Alvares, Secretary of the Goa Foundation, contended with vehemence that the foundation is committed to preserve the environment and ecology of the coastal zone and it is with that objective the writ petition had been filed in the High Court, as Foundation was of the opinion that relevant materials had not been placed before the appropriate authority before the environmental clearance was obtained from the Ministry of Forest and Environment and before the Municipal Council sanctioned the plan for construction of the hotel. According to the appellant, coastal stretches having been declared as Coastal Regulation Zone (for short CRZ) in exercise of powers conferred under Section 3(1) and 3(2)(v) of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 and rule 5(3)(d) of the Environment (Protection) Rules, 1986 and restrictions on the setting up and expansion of industries having been put within the said CRZ, which lies upto 500 meters of the High Tide Line, the concerned authorities committed gross error in granting environmental clearance as well as in granting permission to the respondent for setting up the hotel complex. The appellant also submitted that the existance of sand dunes having been admitted in several reports, the disputed area in question should have been categorised as Category I (CRZ I) which does not permit any new construction except those listed under 2(xii) between Low Tide Line and the High Tide Line and the so-called reports classifying the land over which the hotel complex is coming up as CRZ-III are motivated and designedly made to assist the respondent in having the hotel complex and, therefore, this is a fit case where this Court should prohibit the construction of hotel, annulling the permission granted by the Municipal Council and annulling the environmental clearance of the Ministry of Environment and Forest, Govt. of India or at least, this Court should remit the matter for re- consideration to the Department of Ministry of Environment and Forest for consideration of some fresh data which the Goa Foundation has found subsequent tothe filing of the writ petition before the High Court."


The appellant has utterly failed to establish by referring to any authentic material that there has been an infraction of any provisions of the CRZ Notification or the approved Management Plan of Goa nor is there any illegality in the order of the Government of India, granting environmental clearance as well as the order of the State Authorities in sanctioning the project on the basis of such environmental clearance. The appeal was dismissed.

Application of the verdict for TATA Steel

TATA Steel while taking up projects in the future must clearly look at the location of site for a project as a site location within a certain radius (decided on a case to case basis). Non-compliance in this case could lead to a delay in the start of a project or closure of any set-up established in such region. Delay in the start of the project would affect cash inflows and hence would affect the sales turnover which in turn will reduce the EVA for TATA Steel.

Closure would lead to total loss of the fixed cost of setting up the plant as that cost would now be sunk cost for TATA Steel. In this case, as there would be no business, it would bring the turnover of the project to zero and hence, would drastically affect EVA of TATA Steel for that particular project.

4. Impact on protected and sensitive areas [14] 

No reportable change to natural habitats should occur from any Company's activities as indicated by Environmental Impact Assessment Studies conducted for various units including mines and collieries. There should be no World Heritage sites, sensitive areas, Biosphere Reserves or Protected areas within the operational areas of any Company. No sensitive area, as defined by the Environment Protection Act 1986 in India, should fall within a 10 km radius of any Company's operations

"Ecologically Sensitive Areas (ESAs) have been identified and notified by the Indian Ministry of Environment & Forests (MoEF) since 1989. Notifications declaring areas as ESAs are issued under the Environment (Protection) Act 1986. The clauses of the EPA which allow for the notification of ESAs hold the possibility of realising landscape-level conservation. However, these clauses have been used only by a few actors mainly because of the lack of knowledge about the scope of ESAs and also due to the MoEF's ambiguity in notifying them. [15] "

Implication for TATA Steel

It should be noted that the Dalma Wildlife Sanctuary, which is a protected area, is situated at a distance of 10 km from Jamshedpur. The Regional Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and carrying capacity study conducted by NEERI in May 1995 and in 2000 and EIA studies conducted in 2005-06 indicate that there is no significant environmental impact on Dalma Wild Life Sanctuary. [16]