January 28,2019

January 26,2019
January 26, 2019
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January 29, 2019

Current Affairs for Engineering Service Exam

 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
  1. General Knowledge

Topic 1:Industrial development

UDAN 3

The union Minister for Civil Aviation and Commerce announced the results of  Phase 3 bidders under Ude Desh Ka Aam Naagrik (UDAN) Scheme.

Key Features:

  • Inclusion of Tourism Routes under UDAN 3 in coordination with the Ministry of Tourism.
  • Inclusion of Seaplanes for connecting Water Aerodromes, and
  • Bringing in a number of routes in the North-East Region under the ambit of UDAN.

About UDAN:

  • It is an innovative scheme to develop the regional aviation market.
  • It is a market-based mechanism in which airlines bid for seat subsidies.
  • This first-of-its-kind scheme globally will create affordable yet economically viable and profitable flights on regional routes so that flying becomes affordable to the common man.
  • It envisages providing connectivity to un-served and under-served airports of the country through revival of existing air-strips and airports.
  • The operators could seek a Viability Gap Funding (VGF) apart from getting various concessions.
  • The scheme also provides for various benefits including no airport charges and three-year exclusivity on the routes.
  • The States have a key role under the scheme.
  • The selection of airports where UDAN would start would be done in consultation with State Government and after confirmation of their concessions.
  • The UDAN is likely to a give a major fillip to tourism and employment generation in the hinterland.

Read more at: PIB

Centre relaxes environmental clearance for sugar mills

The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) notified a special provision that relaxes norms for getting prior environmental clearance (EC) to sugar manufacturing and distillery projects.

Background:

  • The Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) notification of 2006 makes it mandatory to get an EC for all new projects, their expansion and modernisation as well as change in product mix.
  • The EC has to be acquired before beginning construction work or preparation of land by the project management, except for securing the land.

The latest notification:

  • The latest notification allows all sugar manufacturing and distillery expansion projects to be treated as B2 category under the EIA notification 2006.
  • The new provision applies to all expansion projects of sugar manufacturing or distilleries, having environmental clearances for their present industrial operations and intend to produce ethanol for blending with petrol under the Ethanol Blended with Petrol (EBP) programme.

EBP programme:

  • Ethanol Blended with Petrol (EBP) programme was launched by the government in 2003 to promote the use of alternative and environmental friendly fuels.
  • This intervention also seeks to reduce import dependency for energy requirements, and give boost to the agriculture sector.

The Environment Impact Assessment:

  • It  is the assessment of the environmental consequences (positive and negative) of a plan, policy, program, or actual projects prior to the decision to move forward with the proposed action.
  • The purpose of the assessment is to ensure that decision makers consider the environmental impacts when deciding whether or not to proceed with a project.
  • The EIA notification has three categories; A, B1 and B2.
  1. The projects under category A require EC from MoEF&CC.
  2. Category B1 projects get the EC from the state/union territory Environment Impact Assessment Authority (SEIAA).
  3. Category B2 get EC from the SEIAA, the requirements for getting clearance for such projects is easier than category A or B1 projects.

Read more at: DowntoEarth

Topic 2 : Environment

CORSIA

Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation, or CORSIA, is an emission mitigation approach for the global airline industry, developed by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

Highlights:

  • It addresses emissions from international air travel.
  • Through CORSIA, the aviation industry is aiming for a carbon neutral growth from 2020.
  • It has three implementation phases, beginning 2021. Participation of countries till 2026 is voluntary.
  • On average (2021-2035), flights subject to CORSIA’s offsetting requirements will account for over 600 million tons of CO2 per year.
  • CORSIA is expected to complement other planned measures such as:
  1. Aircraft technology evolution
  2. Operational improvements
  3. The greater use of sustainable aviation fuels.
  • The International Civil Aviation Organization adopted the international Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs) for CORSIA in 2018.

About ICAO:

  • The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) is a UN specialized agency, established by states in 1944 to manage the administration and governance of the Convention on International Civil Aviation (Chicago Convention).
  • ICAO works with the Convention’s 192 member states and industry groups to reach consensus on international civil aviation Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs) and policies in support of a safe, efficient, secure, economically sustainable and environmentally responsible civil aviation sector.

Read more at: PIB

Microplastic fibres found in groundwater

Scientists have found microplastics contaminating a groundwater source that accounts for 25% of the global drinking water supply.

Highlights:

  • Plastic in the environment breaks down into microscopic particles that can end up in the guts and gills of marine life, exposing the animals to chemicals in the plastic.
  • As the plastics break down, they act like sponges that soak up contaminants and microbes and can ultimately work their way into food supply.
  • Groundwater flows through the cracks and voids in limestone, sometimes carrying sewage and runoff from roads, landfills and agricultural areas into the aquifers below.
  • It is estimated that 6.3 billion metric tonnes of plastic waste have been produced since the 1940s, and 79% of that is now in landfills or the natural environment.

Effects:

  • Affects health
  • Biodiversity
  • Food supply

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 2 : Energy

India’s largest public sector refinery

An integrated refinery expansion complex of the public sector Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited at the Kochi Refinery is the India’s largest public sector refinery.

Highlights:

  • The integrated refinery is a modern expansion complex and would transform the Kochi Refinery as the largest PSU refinery in the country with world class standards.
  • It is equipped for production of cleaner fuels.
  • It will double the production of LPG and diesel and commence production of feedstock for petrochemical projects in the plant.
  • Storage capacity at the plant was enhanced to meet the LPG requirement of nearly six days bottling capacity of the plant.
  • It is considered the safest storage vessel ensuring highest level of safety for plant and adjacent areas.
  • LPG receipt through pipeline will bring down movement of LPG tankers on roads.

Read more at: ET

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