Environment & Biodiversity Current Affairs - 2019
Latest Environment Current Affairs 2019 for UPSC Exams, Bank Exams, Civil Services, SSC and other Competitive Exams. Latest developments in Environment and Climate Change 2019 all important national updates in Environment events for the year 2019.
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Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has approved proposal to declare ocean energy as Renewable Energy. It has clarified to all stakeholders that energy produced using various forms of ocean energy such as tidal, wave and ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC) will be considered as Renewable Energy. The decision will give boost to ocean energy in the country. It will make ocean energy eligible for meeting the non-solar Renewable Purchase Obligations (RPO).
Ocean energy is currently under-utilized and as on date, India does not have any installed ocean energy capacity. It is mostly exploited through a few technologies including wave, tidal, current energy and ocean thermal energy.
The total identified potential of tidal energy is about 12,455 mega watt (NW), with potential locations identified at Khambat and Kutch regions of Gujarat and large backwaters where barrage technology could be used.
Preliminary estimates also have pegged total potential of wave energy in India along the country’s coast to be about 40,000 MW. OTEC has theoretical potential of 180,000 MW, but it is subject to suitable technological evolution. Gulf of Kutch and Gulf of Cambay in Gujarat on west coast of the country also show potential for tidal energy production.
Tags: Current Energy • Energy Sector • Ministry of Renewable Energy • Ocean energy • Ocean thermal energy Conversion • Renewable Energy status • Renewable Purchase Obligations • Tidal Energy • Wave Energy
In a move to curb use of plastics, Union Ministry of Railways has directed all regional offices to ensure complete removal of single-use plastics from all railways stations effective from 2 October 2019. The move is an effort by Indian Railways to shield the environment from menace of plastic.
Indian Railways has directed all Railway units to enforce ban on single use plastic material, with less than 50 micron thickness, except where the thickness of such plastic sheets impair functionality of product.
Emphasis is on making necessary arrangements to minimize generation of plastic waste, its eco- friendly disposal and to follow Plastic Waste Management rules.
Railway Ministry has also instructed its Railway units to administer a pledge on 2nd October 2019 to cut use of plastics and to adapt measures such as Information, Education & Communication (IEC) to create awareness among railway users.
Circular issued by Ministry of Railways in this regard states following instructions-
- Ban on single use plastic material
- Railways will work with vendors at all railway platforms to encourage all railway vendors to avoid use of plastic carry bags
- Railway employees should reduce, reuse and refuse plastic products and should use inexpensive reusable bags to reduce plastic footprint
- IRCTC (Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation) to implement return of plastic drinking water bottles as part of Extended Producer Responsibility– a strategy to add all of environmental costs associated with a product throughout product life cycle to market price of that product and Plastic Bottle crushing machines to be provided expeditiously for this purpose. In 1st phase 1,853 plastic water bottle crushing machines will be installed at 360 major stations.
- Ban will be strictly enforced on railway stations from 2nd October 2019 and other properties across country as part of ‘Plastic Free Railway’
Tags: Ban on Plastic • Ban on single use Plastic • Extended Producer Responsibility • Indian Railways • IRCTC • Plastic Bottle crushing machines • Plastic Free Railway • Plastic Pollution • Union Ministry of Railways