New Delhi Under SPV model, government will get all statutory clearances for greenfield projects

Stung by allegations that natural resources have been allotted in non-transparent ways, the government is set to start auction process in the steel sector, whereby certain large projects would be offered on the basis of the highest upfront payment and royalty bid. The ministry of steel is planning to introduce the special purpose vehicle (SPV) model for awarding projects.

Perspectives of industries and non-government bodies often differ on environment protection norms. While NGOs insist on putting in place the most stringent environment safety standards, industries often find it difficult to comply with such norms.

Similarly, the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), a non-government organisation, and public sector steel maker SAIL are unable to agree on what would be the right green norms for the steel industry.

New Delhi The central government may consider tweaking the proposed Mines and Mineral Development and Regulation (MMDR) Bill, 2011, to retain its control in allocation of mineral concessions.

The existing MMDR Act, 1957, makes the Centre’s approval a must for grant of mineral concessions for most of the minerals, including iron ore, manganese and chrome. However, the MMDR Bill proposes to devolve full powers of extension, grant of mineral concession to the state governments. The states would not require any prior approval from the central government to grant a mining lease to be allocated mainly through the competitive bidding route.

New Delhi The government is set to consider a proposal for a complete ban on private-public joint ventures (JVs) for developing mineral blocks allocated to state-run corporations and public sector

New Delhi Making its opposition to the European Union’s move to tax airlines for emission clear, the aviation ministry has decided to pass an order banning Indian carriers from making any such payment.

“We have been against such a levy from the beginning itself. We will soon issue an order banning airlines from paying any tax on carbon emission to EU,” said a senior civil aviation ministry official.

New Delhi The growing demand of coal in the domestic market is likely to push up its international prices. Coal industry experts feel that the prices may go up significantly in near future, driven mainly by the demand in China and India.

Coal prices in the international market have gone up from over $80 per tonne in 2009 to over $110 per tonne at present.This, the experts, feel may cross $150 per tonne.

New Delhi With the deadline for domestic carriers to submit their carbon emission data with European Union (EU) ending on Saturday, the tussle between the government of India and the EU has turned murkier.

Both of them are threatening to take strong actions against each other in case of implementation\non-implementation of the proposed levy on the carbon emission by every airline.

New Delhi The Centre has put Orissa government’s plans to get 33% free power from coal reject-based power plants on hold. The coal ministry has asked Orissa government not to hold up any clearances for coal blocks on the basis of such condition till a proper policy is formulated in this regard in consultation with the power ministry.

"We have told them to speed up the clearances for coal blocks. There is a huge shortage of coal in the country and there has to be faster approval for new allocatees," a coal ministry official said.

New Delhi The ban on mining seems to have made Karnataka the dumping ground for poor quality iron ore.

New Delhi The country’s energy import bill is on course to balloon further. The missive from the Prime Minister’s Office to Coal India (CIL) that the company must meet at least 80% of the coal requirement of power plants or get ready to pay a penalty will effectively inflate the country’s coal import bill, already growing at a scorching pace, by another $11 billion annually. High prices of imported coal will increase power tariffs although the whole plan might help reduce the country’s yawning electricity deficit.