Current Affairs Today - Current Affairs 2018

Akademik Lomonosov: Russia unveils world’s first floating nuclear power plant

Russia unveiled world’s first floating nuclear power station at  port city of Murmansk. It will be loaded with nuclear fuel at Murmansk and will be towed to port of Pevek in autonomous Chukotka region in Russia’s far northeast in Arctic Circle region.

Akademik Lomonosov

Akademik Lomonosov was constructed by Russian state nuclear power firm Rosatom. It has length of 144 metres and width of 30 metres. It has displacement of 21,500 tonnes and crew of 69 people. For power generation, it has been fitted with two modified KLT-40 naval propulsion nuclear reactors (each of 35 MW capacity) together providing up to 70 MW of electricity and 300 MW of heat. It is named after Russian Academician Mikhail Lomonosov.

It has latest security systems and is considered as one of safest nuclear installations in the world. However, environmentalists have dubbed it as ‘nuclear Titanic’ or ‘Chernobyl on ice’. It will be primarily used to power oil rigs in remote areas of Artic region where Russia is pushing to drill for oil and gas.

Significance

The low-capacity, mobile (floating) nuclear power plant can produce enough electricity to power town of 200,000 residents living in Russia’s far-flung northernmost Artic region where large amounts of electricity is not needed’ and construction of conventional power station based on coal, gas and diesel is complicated and costly. It can save upto 50,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions per year.

The project is part of Russia’s greater aims to secure rich deposits of oil and gas in North Pole region in Artic. Due to climate change, new shipping routes are opening up in Russia’s north and as result, it is strengthening its military position in the region.

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UJALA scheme: EESL distributes over 30 crore LED bulbs across the country

State run Energy Efficiency Services Ltd (EESL) has distributed over 30 crore light emitting diode (LED) bulbs across country under zero-subsidy Unnat Jyoti by Affordable LEDs for All (UJALA) scheme. The distribution of 30 crore LED bulbs has led to energy savings of over 38,952 million kWh, annually, amounting to energy savings of Rs. 15,581 crore.

Key Facts

The implementation of scheme has increased penetration of LED in domestic market to 10% from mere 0.4% earlier. It has also increased India’s share in global LED market to 12% from a mere 0.1%. It has increased annual LED domestic production rom 30 lakh bulbs to over 6 crore bulbs, simultaneously creating 60,000 jobs.

 Unnat Jyoti by Affordable LEDs for All (UJALA)  Scheme

It is zero-subsidy scheme that aims promote efficient lighting, enhance awareness on using efficient equipment which reduce electricity bills and preserve environment. It is LED based Domestic Efficient Lighting Programme (DELP). Its purpose is to help reduce electricity bills of consumers and also contribute to energy security of India.

The scheme was launched in January 2015 and is currently largest LED distribution programme in the world. It is being implemented by EESL, a joint venture of PSUs under Ministry of Power. Under it, LED Bulbs are distributed. LED bulbs have a very long life, almost 50 times more than ordinary bulbs, and 8-10 times that of CFLs, and therefore provide both energy and cost savings.

Benefits: Electricity savings, Reduction of load, Reduction of consumer bills and Greenhouse gas emission reductions. It also serves Government’s mandate of energy efficiency as key mitigation strategy.

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