Chapter 2: MINERAL AND MINES
Major minerals are in Union list and Minor minerals are under
Mines and Minerals [Development and Regulation] Act, 2015
- Union can decide procedures for auction and
technicalities. It can also reserve mines for select end
users or P.S.U's.
- States can grant licenses to bidders for all minerals
except Coal / Lignite. They can allow license to
be transferred by winner to others. They conduct actual
auction via competitive bidding.
- An integrated license for prospecting and mining
launched unlike separate licenses for each this can
improve ease of doing business.
- Earlier license granted for 30 years but now 50
years.Previously 10 sq km area for licensee but now union
can increase size too.
- Two new organizations created: National Mineral
Exploration Trust, District Mineral Foundation. D.M.F
to solve public grievance redressal, safeguard rights of
public or tribals.
- Special courts can be setup to curb illegal mining.
- DMF funds shall be used to implement PM Khanji
Kshetra Kalyan yojana.
The objective of PMKKKY
scheme will be
(a) to implement various
and welfare projects/programs in mining affected areas
that complement the existing ongoing schemes/projects of
State and Central Government;
minimize/mitigate the adverse impacts, during and after
mining, on the environment, health and socioeconomic of
people in mining districts; and
to ensure long-term sustainable livelihoods for the
affected people in mining areas.
Problems with M.M.D.R:
- No independent regulatory for mining sector.
- No mechanism for dispute resolution between union and
- No limits on mining so can lead to environment
- Gram Sabha not given rights even for scheduled and
tribal areas. No mining rights for tribal cooperatives.
- States given power to set rules so can lead to non
uniform policies and regime change can affect stability of
Coal Mines [Special Provisions] Bill, 2015
The Supreme court cancelled 204 coal blocks allotted to
private players in violation of transparency rules. The
government thus brought an Act for re auction of mines with
a transparent mechanism.
- Classify mines into three categories: Class I for power
consumers only. Union can reclassify mines from class I to
III. Class II mines for specific end users and Class III
mines for power, steel and cement firms.
- Joint secretary level officer to oversee bidding
process. Public, private and joint ventures can bid.
- Compensation to previous owner for land and mining
- Chattisgarh earned maximum revenues.
- Class I mines for power sector PSU's so cheaper power
and can help Make in India. Union also with power to use
mines for public interest purposes. E-auction meant higher
revenues for states.
- Iron, steel, cement companies were allotted mines on
forward bidding mechanism i.e. highest bidder wins. But
for power companies the lowest bidder i.e. supplier of
power at lowest cost won.
- If power company gets bogus quality coal then it shall
have to import it but no provision for increasing tariff
with inflation or fuel charge adjustment.
- Two stage bidding was done for technical competency and
financial bid. But no independent committee to check
technical strength of company.
- Bill ignores land acquisition, forest rights and
primary commercial energy in India:
Coal is abundant but is concentrated in the
eastern region which accounts for 70% of the total coal
resources of the country
The Western region of India has over 70 per
cent of hydro-carbon reserves in the country
More than 70 per cent of the total hydro
potential in the country is located in the Northern and
North - Eastern region
The southern region has only 6 per cent of the
coal reserves and 10 per cent of the total hydro potential
but has almost 100 per cent of lignite deposits of the
Q.With reference to ‘fly ash’ produced by the power plants using the coal as fuel, which of the following statements is/are correct?
1. Fly ash can be used in the production of bricks for building construction
2. Fly ash can be used as a replacement for some of the Portland cement contents of concrete
3. Fly ash is made up of silicon dioxide and calcium oxide only, and does not contain any toxic elements.
Select the correct answer using the code given below (UPSC CSAT 2015)
1 and 2
1 and 3
Ans . A
Fly ash from coal-fired thermal power stations is an excellent potential raw material for the manufacture of construction material like blended cement, fly ash bricks, mosaic tiles and hollow blocks. It also has other, high volume applications and can be used for paving roads, building embankments, and mine fills.
Fly ash contains trace concentrations of heavy metals and other substances that are known to be detrimental to health in sufficient quantities.
Potentially toxic trace elements in coal include arsenic, beryllium, cadmium, barium, chromium, copper, lead, mercury, molybdenum, nickel, radium, selenium, thorium, uranium, vanadium, and zinc.
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