At least five private companies under scanner

The Central Bureau of Investigation has registered a preliminary enquiry to probe alleged irregularities in issuance of licences to at least five private companies for exploration of mineral wealth in the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea during 2010-11. The prime allegation is that licences for 28 of the 62 offshore mines were granted to companies owned by the son and brother of an Indian Revenue Officer in conspiracy with unknown officials of the Indian Bureau of Mines and the Union Ministry of Mines.

NEW DELHI, 24 SEPT: Just a week after filing cases in the coal block allocation scam, the CBI has begun probing alleged irregularities in the country's first-ever attempt to explore untapped minera

New Delhi After filing a series of cases in the coal block allocation scam, the CBI has now been tasked with unearthing alleged irregularities in the allocation of offshore mining licenses to private firms.

The CBI has registered a preliminary enquiry into allocation of 62 off-shore mineral blocks in the sea bed of of Bay of Bengal and Arabian Sea, the first-ever attempt to explore untapped mineral wealth worth thousands of crore.

Arabian Sea tropical cyclones have become stronger over the past 30 years owing to a reduction in vertical wind shear (VWS) brought about by radiative forcing from pollution aerosols1. Wang et al.2 argue that the decline in VWS results from a systematic shift in storm genesis date, which may be part of a natural cycle or another consequence of regional pollution. However, their conclusions2, although interesting, are not supported by our analysis and are probably sensitive to biases in the observational record.

Tropical cyclones over the Arabian Sea in the pre-monsoon season (May–June) have intensified since 1997 owing to significant reductions in storm-ambient vertical wind shear (VWS) in the troposphere; these reductions have decreased on average by about 3 m s−1 from the pre-1997 epoch (1979–1997) to the recent epoch (1998–2010)1. The authors attribute the reduction of pre-monsoon VWS to the dimming effects of increased anthropogenic black carbon and sulphate emissions.

New Delhi: Levels in 84 reservoirs monitored by government agencies are at 57% of last year’s capacity and 83% if compared to a 10-year average, belying fears of an immediate crisis although storag

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has asked the ministry of environment and forests (MoEF) to quantify the environmental damage caused by the sinking of the Panama-owned vessel MV Rak, which sank off the coast of Mumbai last year.

Not only did the sinking of MV Rak result in a massive oil spill but 60,000 metric tonnes of coal was dumped into the ocean following the sinking.The NGT has also issued notices to Mumbai Maritime Board, the Maharashtra state government and the ship’s owner Delta Shipping Maritime Services with the latter being asked to pay for the damages caused to the marine ecology due to the oil spill.

AHMEDABAD: Forests and other departments in Gujarat have been very proactive in carrying out biodiversity conservation measures, significant among them being those related to whale shark, sea turtle, restoration of mangroves etc., Dr. A P Singh, member secretary, Gujarat Biodiversity Board, said.

Gujarat Biodiversity Board too has launched several measures for the conservation and development of biological diversity, including marine, he said, adding that Government of India had enacted the Biological Diversity Act, 2002 for the conservation, development and regulation of biodiversity. The main objective of the Act is conservation of biodiversity and sustainable utilization of biological resources.

MUMBAI: Residents of housing societies in Worli expressed concern after noticing that part of the Arabian Sea near the Haji Ali dargah turned black.

The State government was resorting to “jugglery of words” when speaking about the Netravati diversion project and the Yettinahole project, member of the Western Ghats Task Force B.M. Kumaraswamy said here on Wednesday.

Speaking to The Hindu here on the sidelines of a programme organised by the task force and the Department of Forests, Mr. Kumaraswamy said the government was denying that there was any attempt to divert the Netravati, and instead it was saying that it would supply drinking water to Kolar, Chickballapur, Chitradurga and Bangalore Rural districts from the Yettinahole, a tributary of the Netravati, he said.