Sequences of events:

  • Government formed M.B.Shah Commission. To investigate illegal mining of iron & manganese in 6 states.
  • 2012: Shah gives report
  • Environment ministry temporarily suspended mining in Goa.
  • Supreme Court ordered ban on mining
  • SC formed panel under C.R.Babu, to suggest annual limit on iron ore extraction from Goa.
  • Now CR Babu gave interim report.

What are CR Babu’s interim recommendations?

  1. Supreme court should lift the ban on iron ore mining in Goa.
  2. BUT put restriction/cap- Max. 20 million tonnes per year.
  3. Create permanent fund from mining companies’ profit. Use this cash to benefit of local junta.
  4. Impose cess on mining activity.
  5. Use this cess money to setup an ecological centre. This centre will monitor ecosystem in mining areas.
  6. setup mineral corporation. (in other words, let PSU extract ore, and prohibit private companies)
  7. Don’t give new mining permission without adequate regulatory and technological measures.
  8. Conduct study before settingup new plants of low-grade iron ore.

Why is Illegal mining bad for India?

  • Huge loss to state revenue due to illegal mining.
  • An increase in dust pollution, deforestation.
  • more health disorders
  • Landscape degraded, soil fertility declines, agricultural productivity lost.
  • Extensive degradation of landscape
  • Negative hydrological systems in the mining belt.
Development Vs. Environment: Similar issues
CONGO oil extraction near Virgunga nation park.this park is home of mountain gorillas (rare and endangered)
UGANDA oil extraction near Lake Kivu (between Uganda and Kivu). This site is close to river nile’s source.
INDONESIA equatorial forest cut down to make space for Palm oil cultivation. Even leading to forest fires.

Gold Ore Tailing

  • GOT, is the waste material after separating gold from the gangue of gold ore.
  • Why in news? Hutti Gold Mines Ltd. (HGML). It’s a PSU under Karnataka state.
  • HGML is the only producer of primary gold in the country.
  • It sold tonnes of Gold Ore Tailing (GOT) to a private company, at throwaway price, from Chitradurga district.
  • PSU gave Reasons for selling off the GOT at throwaway price
    • GOT has high cyanide content, causes water pollution.
    • We needed space to expand the existing mines.
    • We had clearance from Indian bureau of mines (IBM)

Mock Question: Find correct statement(s) about Gold ore trailing.

  1. GOT, is the waste material after separating gold from the gangue of gold ore.
  2. GOT has high level of cyanide.
  3. Both A and B
  4. Neither A nor B