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                                          Minerals and Resources 05

Natural Gas

Natural gas is in association with or without petroleum. It is emerging as an important source of commercial energy. It is used as a source of energy as well as an Industrial raw material in the petrochemical Industry. Natural Gas is preferable over petroleum as its low carbon dioxide emission.

USA has the largest reserves of Natural Gas.

In India Natural Gas reserves are found in Krishna Godavari basin, Gulf of Bombay, Andaman- Nicobar, etc.,

Gas Authority of India was established in the year 1984 with an aim for processing, transporting, distributing and marketing of natural gas. The company owns and operates a network of over 5,340 km of natural gas pipeline in the country.

Atomic minerals:

 Atomic energy is obtained by altering the structure of atoms.  Heavy metals likes Uranium, Thorium, Radium, Plutonium and lithium are the main sources of Nuclear Energy. Currently 11% of World’s energy need satisfied by nuclear energy.

India possesses the world’s largest reserves of monazite, the principal source of thorium and some reserves of uranium.

Australia has the highest deposits of Uranium in the world followed by Kazakhstan.

Uranium is also called as ‘Yellow Cake’

Uranium deposits in India:

India produces 2% of world’s Uranium. In India, uranium is embedded in the igneous and metamorphic rocks in Jharkhand, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh and some parts of Himalaya. A substantial source of uranium deposits is also found in the monazite sands along the Kerala coasts and in some parts of Bihar. The production of uranium at present is confined to the mines at Jaduguda in Singhbhum district of Jharkhand. The total reserves of uranium in the country are enough to support 5-10 Gw of electricity generating capacity.

Thorium deposits in India:

Thorium is principally obtained from monazite. The beach sands of Kerala contain the world’s richest monazite deposits.It also occurs on the sands of Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil nadu, Rajasthan, Jharkhand, Bihar.


Renewable Energy sources:

These sources are clean and non polluting and can be easily replaced by nature. As they are environmental friendly they are seen as better replacement for non-renewable sources.

Solar Energy:

It is based in Mechanical conversion of solar energy into electricity.

Solar Energy is connected into electricity by two methods:

  1. Solar PV powers
  2. Solar power plants using focusing mirrors.

Total installed solar capacity of India is 26 Gigawatts as of 2018. Karnataka is the top producer with highest installed capacity.

Wind Energy:

Wind turbines harness the energy of moving air to generate electricity. Onshore wind refers to turbines located on land, while offshore turbines are located out at sea or in freshwater.

Wind energy accounts for nearly 10% of India’s total installed power generation capacity and generated 62.03 TWh in the fiscal year 2018-2019, which is nearly 4% of total electricity generation. Globally India stands 4th in wind power.

Tamilnadu is India’s top producer of Wind Energy.


Water power resource differs from thermal power in more than one ways. It is a renewable or inexhaustible resource. It is pollution-free. Its recurring or maintenance coast is minimal. However, this source of energy, has two major drawbacks. Firstly, it calls for huge financial lay out particularly in those regions where water is to be impounded in huge quantity to ensure free flow of water all the year round. Secondly, in most cases its gestation period is too long.

With the water power potential of 41000mw, India ranks fifth in world after congo, Russia, Canada and the U.S.A

Hydroelectric Power: 

Development of hydroelectric power started in the last decade of the 19th century with the establishment of a hydroelectric plant for supplying electricity to Darjeeling in 1897. At present, India has an installed power generation capacity of 357,875 megawatts, of which around 13% is generated through hydro electric power projects. It is cheaper, pollution-free and renewable source of power. India is the 7th largest producer in the world.

Bio Gas:

Biogas is one of the viable alternatives to the burning energy question. Generating energy from farm wash animal and human washes. Biogas is primarily methane and carbon dioxide. It may have small amounts of hydrogen sulphide moisture and siloxanes. The gases methane, hydrogen and carbon monoxide can be combusted or oxidized with oxygen. This energy release allows biogas to be used as a fuel. It can also be used in a gas engine to convert the energy in the gas into electricity and heat.  These provide an twin benefits to the farmer in the form of energy and improved quality of manure. Biogas is the most efficient use of cattle as it is a  good manure and prevent loss of trees. Nearly around 5% of India’s LPG usage is from Bio Gas. In India, Maharashtra is the highest producer of Biogas energy.

Geo Thermal Energy:

Geo Thermal Energy refers to the heat and electricity produced by using the heat from the interior of the Earth.

As the heat of earth increase progressively with increase in depth this beat can be used for electricity generation by pumping water in and converting it into steam. This steam in turns runs the turbine.

In India Geothermal projects have been set up in Puga Valley – Ladakh Parvati Valley – Himachal Pradesh

Energy can also classified as conventional energy and non conventional energy.

Conventional Energy Conventional sources of energy are the sources that are commonly in use since long time. These are natural energy resources which are regularly used by society for many generations.

E.g.: Fossil Fuel (Coal, Petroleum), Natural Gas, Hydel energy.

Non – Conventional Energy : Non-Conventional sources are energy sources that  identified only few decades ago. These sources have recently developed or developing. Mostly these are clean and environment friendly.

E.g.: Solar, Geothermal and Nuclear Energy.

Conservation of Energy:

In last century alone world speeded up the exploiting of Natural resources tenfold.  If exploited faster than the replaceable rare even renewable too may get affected. Energy security of a country is back bone for it economic, Industrial and Societal development.  Vice use of energy and improvement in clean energy technologies are need of the hour. Sustainable uses of resources are essential.

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