Fly Ash Management and Utilization Mission
Part of: Prelims and GS-III -Environment
Context: The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has directed the constitution of a ‘Fly Ash Management and Utilization Mission’ in its recent order.
About the mission
- Its goal will be to coordinate and monitor issues relating to the handling and disposal of fly ash.
- The Mission is to be jointly headed by the secretaries of the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change (MoEF&CC), Union Ministry of Coal and Power and the chief secretaries of Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh.
- The secretary of MoEF&CC will be the nodal agency for coordination and compliance.
- The Mission may also monitor scientific management and utilization of fly ash by power projects outside Singrauli and Sonbhadra, in coordination with chief secretaries of concerned states.
- The Mission also extends the responsibility of fly ash management to the chief secretaries of the states.
What is Fly Ash?
- Fly Ash is a byproduct from burning of coal in the thermal power generation.
- It is called fly ash because it is transported from the combustion chamber by exhaust gases.
- Composition: silicon dioxide (SiO2), aluminium oxide (Al2O3), ferric oxide (Fe2O3) and calcium oxide (CaO).
- Uses: In concrete and cement products, road base, metal recovery, and mineral filler among others.
- Harmful Effects:
- Toxic air pollutants which can trigger heart disease, cancer, respiratory diseases and stroke.
- When combined with water they cause leaching of heavy metals in ground water.
- Affects the root development system of trees.
What is NGT?
- It is a statutory body established in 2010, as per the National Green Tribunal Act.
- It is a specialised judicial body equipped with expertise solely for the purpose of adjudicating environmental cases in the country.
- The chairperson of the NGT is a retired judge of the Supreme Court
- It shall not be bound by the procedure laid down under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 but shall be guided by principles of natural justice.
- Tribunal’s orders are binding and it has power to grant relief in the form of compensation and damages to affected persons.
News Source: Down to Earth