August 2,2018

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August 1, 2018
Quiz – August ,2018
August 2, 2018

Current Affairs for Engineering Service Exam

Video Lectures and Test Series for ESE-2019

 Topics list:

  1. National and International Issues on
    1. Economic Development
    2. Social Development
    3. Industrial Development
  2. Energy and Environment
    1. Energy
    2. Environment
  3. Information and Communication Technology
    1. Technology
    2. Application
  4. The Key Initiatives of Government
  5. General Knowledge

Topic 1:Economic development

Extension of Concessional Financing Scheme (CFS)

The Union Cabinet has approved the first extension of Concessional Financing Scheme(CFS) to support Indian Entities bidding for strategically important infrastructure projects abroad.

Key Facts:

  • The scheme envisages Government of India to provide counter guarantee and interest equalization of 2 % to EXIM Bank
  • To offer concessional finance to any foreign Govt. or foreign Govt. owned or controlled entity, if any Indian entity, succeeds in getting contract for the execution of a project.
  • Under the Scheme, EXIM Bank extends credit at a rate not exceeding LIBOR (avg. of six months) + 100 bps.
  • The repayment of the loan is guaranteed by the foreign govt.
  • It is proposed to extend the Scheme for another five years from 2018 to 2023.
  • The CFS enables India to generate substantial backward linkage induced jobs, demand for material and machinery in India and also a lot of goodwill for India.

Financial Implications:

Financial implication is towards payment of Interest Equalization Support (IES) to the lending Bank for which budgetary provision will be made by the Department of Economic Affairs.

Read more at: PIB

Topic 1:Social development

Seva Bhoj Yojna scheme

The Ministry of Culture, Government of India has launched the new scheme namely ‘Seva Bhoj Yojna’

Key Facts:

  • The scheme envisages to reimburse Central Share of CGST and IGST on Food/Prasad/Langar/Bhandara offered by Religious/ Charitable  Institutions
  • Religious / Charitable Institution shall first register with Darpan Portal of NITI Aayog and get Unique ID generated by Darpan Portal to avail the benefits

Read more at: PIB

Topic 1:Industrial development

New policy to promote electric vehicles

The government is preparing a fresh policy for promotion of electric vehicles, which will be rolled out initially on a smaller scale to ensure smoother transition and better cooperation from the automobile sector.

Highlights:

  • The policy, advocating minimal subsidies, is likely to be announced at a global e-mobility summit
  • According to the fresh proposal, the government will first begin creating favourable ecosystems in nine polluted cities with a population of over four million, and gradually move to cities with populations of one million-plus
  • The government could also consider throwing a 100-day global challenge to automakers for setting up manufacturing facilities for e-vehicles, batteries and charging infrastructure in India
  • To create favourable ecosystems for transition to electric vehicles is silently being worked upon.
  • The Union cabinet is also soon expected to take  a call on the second phase of Faster Adoption And Manufacturing of (Hybrid &) Electric Vehicles in India (Fame India) scheme
  • The  non-fiscal incentives to electric vehicle firms for five years

Fame India scheme:

  • To support hybrid/electric vehicles market development and Manufacturing eco-system.
  • The scheme has 4 focus areas i.e. Technology development, Demand Creation, Pilot Projects and Charging Infrastructure.
  • The FAME India Scheme is aimed at incentivising all vehicle segments i.e. 2 Wheeler, 3 Wheeler Auto, Passenger 4 Wheeler Vehicle, Light Commercial Vehicles and Buses.
  • The scheme covers Hybrid & Electric technologies like Mild Hybrid, Strong Hybrid, Plug in Hybrid & Battery Electric Vehicles.

Read more at: ET

Topic 2 : Environment

Solutions for a future of water scarcity

The scale of loss:

  • High densities of cities do not allow for water harvesting to fill the gap
  • The invasive schemes like dams to service these large cities and the huge needs of agriculture have caused extreme ecological devastation.
  • The products and services that are derived from natural infrastructure have often led to the terminal loss of the source itself

Solutions:

  • Large-scale non-invasive schemes can provide a perennial supply of water to large populations in cities and towns, engage the natural landscape, sustain ecological balance and have major economic and health benefits
  • Conserve and use the floodplain, it can be a self-sustaining aquifer wherein every year, the river and floodplain are preserved in the same healthy condition as the year before.
  • The farmers can be encouraged to grow orchards/food forests to secure and restore the ecological balance of the river ecosystem.
  • The small, community-driven projects of check dams, water harvesting and lakes and can service large populations
  • Afforestation on river beds

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 2 : Energy

Policy Framework for exploration and exploitation of Unconventional Hydrocarbons

The Union Cabinet has approved the policy to permit exploration and exploitation of unconventional hydrocarbons such as Shale oil/gas, Coal Bed Methane (CBM) etc,.

Highlights:

  • It will be carried out under the existing Production Sharing Contracts (PSCs), CBM contracts and Nomination fields to encourage the existing Contractors in the licensed/leased area to unlock the potential of unconventional hydrocarbons in the existing acreages.
  • The policy will enable the realization of prospective hydrocarbon reserves in the existing Contract Areas which otherwise would remain unexplored and unexploited.
  • The policy evisages  new investment in Exploration and Production (E&P) activities and chances of finding new hydrocarbon discoveries and resultant increased domestic production thereof is expected.
  • Exploration and exploitation of additional hydrocarbon resources is expected to spur new investment, impetus to economic activities, additional employment generation and thus benefiting various sections of society.
  • To induction of new, innovative and cutting-edge technology and forging new technological collaboration to exploit unconventional hydrocarbons.

Production Sharing Contract (PSC):

  • Production Sharing Contract (PSC) is a term used in the Hydrocarbon industry and refers to an agreement between Contractor and Government whereby Contractor bears all exploration risks, production and development costs in return for its stipulated share of (profit from) production resulting from this effort.
  • The costs incurred by the contractor are recoverable in case of commercial discovery.
  • Production Sharing Contracts became widely adopted as part of the New Exploration and Licensing Policy (NELP) launched by the Government in 1997 for enhanced exploration of oil and gas resources in the country
  • The Production Sharing Contracts (PSCs) under NELP are based on the principle of “profit sharing”.  

Hydrocarbon Exploration and Licensing Policy (HELP)

  • Hydrocarbon Exploration and Licensing Policy (HELP) is a policy adopted by Government of India on 2016 indicating the new contractual and fiscal model for award of hydrocarbon acreages towards exploration and production (E&P).
  • HELP is applicable for all future contracts to be awarded.
  • HELP replaces the present policy regime for exploration and production of oil and gas, known as New Exploration Licensing Policy (NELP), which has been in existence for 18 years.

Read more at: PIB

Topic 3 : ICT

Electric Propulsion System

ISRO is working on Electric Propulsion System (EPS) which can reduce the dependence on chemical propellant.

Highlights:

  • Electric Propulsion (EP) is a class of space propulsion which makes use of electrical power to accelerate a propellant by different possible electrical and/or magnetic means.
  • With the help of EPS, satellite weight can be reduced as the chemical propellants are replaced by electrical system, the weight of which is not so significant compared to chemical propellant.
  • A 4 tonne satellite with EPS can do the work of 6 tonne satellite with the same efficiency
  • The use of electrical power enhances the propulsive performances of the EP thrusters compared with conventional chemical thrusters

Read more at: PIB

TRAI gives nod for sale of 5G spectrum

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI)  recommended the auction of spectrum for offering 5G services for the first time in the country.

Key Facts:

  • The regulator has called for over 43% reduction in the reserve prices of 700 MHz band spectrum — sought-after for high speed services.
  • The regulator pointed out that there is an “urgent need” of audit of all allocated spectrum both commercial as well as spectrum allocated to various PSUs and government organisations
  • For the 5G airwaves, i.e. the spectrum in 3300-3600 MHz, the regulator said it should be put to auction in the block size of 20 MHz.
  • To avoid monopolisation of this band, there should be limit of 100 MHz per bidder, it added.

About TRAI :

  • The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) is a statutory body set up by the Government of India under section 3 of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India Act, 1997.
  • It is the regulator of the telecommunications sector in India.
  • It consists of a Chairperson and not more than two full-time members and not more than two part-time members.

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 4: The Key Initiatives of Government

National Action Plan on Climate Change

  • National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC) is a comprehensive action plan which outlines measures on climate change related adaptation and mitigation while simultaneously advancing development.
  • It effectively pulls together a number of the government‘s existing national plans on water, renewable energy, energy efficiency agriculture and others and bundled with additional ones into a set of eight missions.  
  • The Prime Minister‘s Council on Climate Change is in charge of the overall implementation of the plan

Eight core missions of NAPCC:

  1. National Solar Mission – It has a goal of increasing production of photo-voltaic to 1000 MW/year; and a goal of deploying at least 1000 MW of solar thermal power generation.
  2. National Mission for Enhanced Energy Efficiency
  3. National Mission on Sustainable Habitat
  4. National Water Mission – the plan sets a goal of a 20% improvement in water use efficiency through pricing and other measures.  
  5. National Mission for Sustaining the Himalayan Ecosystem
  6. National Mission for a ―Green India‖: Goals include the afforestation of 6 million hectares of degraded forest lands and expanding forest cover from 23% to 33% of India‘s territory
  7. National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture
  8. National Mission on Strategic Knowledge for Climate Change

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