PIB Analysis : 12th February

PIB Analysis for UPSC CSE

Topics Covered

  1. Use of Space Technology in Agriculture Sector and for border Management
  2. KUSUM Scheme
  3. Commission for Agricultural Costs & Prices
  4. Ethanol Blended Petrol (EBP) Programme
  5. Initiatives taken towards combating and adapting to climate change
  6. Transfer of excess funds from RBI to Government
  7. Aqua Mega Food Park

1 . Use of Space Technology in Agriculture Sector and for border Management

Space Technology in Agriculture

  • The Department of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare established a Centre, called Mahalanobis National Crop Forecast Centre, in 2012, for operationalisation of the space technology developed in the Indian Space Research Organization, for crop production  forecasting.
  • The Department has another centre called Soil and Land Use Survey of India, which uses satellite data for soil resources mapping.
  • Currently, the Department is using space technology for its various programmes/ areas, such as, Forecasting Agricultural Output using Space, Agro-meteorology and Land-based Observations (FASAL) project,  Coordinated programame on Horticulture Assessment and Management using geoiNformatics (CHAMAN)  project, National Agricultural Drought Assessment and Monitoring System (NADAMS), Rice-Fallow Area Mapping and intensification, geo tagging of infrastructure and assets created under Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana,  and Crop Insurance.        
  • The Department of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare had launched KISAN [C(K)rop Insurance using Space technology And geoiNformatcs] project during October 2015. The project envisaged use of high-resolution remote sensing data for optimum crop cutting experiment planning and improving yield estimation. 

Space Technology in Border Management

Details of the areas identified for use of space technology are as under:-

  • Island development and security
  • Border Surveillance
  • Communication and Navigation
  • GIS and Operations Planning System
  • Border Infrastructure Monitoring

2 . KUSUM Scheme

The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has formulated a Scheme ‘Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan (KUSUM)’. The Scheme is currently under the process of seeking approval.

The proposal on KUSUM Scheme provides for :-

  • Installation of grid-connected solar power plants each of Capacity up to 2 MW in the rural areas;
  • Installation of standalone off-grid solar water pumps to fulfil irrigation needs of farmers not connected to grid; and
  • Solarisation of existing grid-connected agriculture pumps to make farmers independent of grid supply and also enable them to sell surplus solar power generated to DISCOM and get extra income.

3 . Commission for Agricultural Costs & Prices

About CACP

  • The Commission for Agricultural Costs & Prices (CACP) is an attached office of the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Government of India. It came into existence in January 1965.
  • Currently, the Commission comprises a Chairman, Member Secretary, one Member (Official) and two Members (Non-Official). The non-official members are representatives of the farming community and usually have an active association with the farming community. 
  • It is mandated to recommend minimum support prices (MSPs) to incentivize the cultivators to adopt modern technology, and raise productivity and overall grain production in line with the emerging demand patterns in the country. Assurance of a remunerative and stable price environment is considered very important for increasing agricultural production and productivity since the market place for agricultural produce tends to be inherently unstable, which often inflict undue losses on the growers, even when they adopt the best available technology package and produce efficiently. Towards this end, SP for major agricultural products are fixed by the government, each year, after taking into account the recommendations of the Commission. 
  • As of now, CACP recommends MSPs of 23 commodities, which comprise 7 cereals (paddy, wheat, maize, sorghum, pearl millet, barley and ragi), 5 pulses (gram, tur, moong, urad, lentil), 7 oilseeds (groundnut, rapeseed-mustard, soyabean, seasmum, sunflower, safflower, nigerseed), and 4 commercial crops (copra, sugarcane, cotton and raw jute).

4 . Ethanol Blended Programme

About the Programme

  • Ethanol Blended Petrol (EBP) programme was launched in January, 2003. The programme sought to promote the use of alternative and environment friendly fuels and to reduce import dependency for energy requirements.

About Ethanol

  • Ethanol, an anhydrous ethyl alcohol having chemical formula of C2H5OH, can be produced from sugarcane, maize, wheat, etc  which are having high starch content. In India, ethanol is mainly produced from sugarcane molasses by fermentation process. Ethanol can be mixed with gasoline to form different blends.
  • As the ethanol molecule contains oxygen, it allows the engine to more completely combust the fuel, resulting in fewer emissions and thereby reducing the occurrence of environmental pollution.
  • Since ethanol is produced from plants that harness the power of the sun, ethanol is also considered as renewable fuel.

5 . Initiatives taken towards combating and Adapting to Climate Change

Context : Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change released a publication today in New Delhi on climate actions in India titled “India – Spearheading Climate Solutions”. This publication “India – Spearheading Climate Solutions” mentions the key actions India has taken under various sectors towards combating and adapting to climate change.

Some of the major initiatives included in the Publication

  1. India’s National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC) which covers eight major missions on Solar, Enhanced Energy Efficiency, Sustainable Habitat, Water, Sustaining the Himalayan Ecosystem, Green India, Sustainable Agriculture and Strategic Knowledge on Climate Change
  2. International Solar Alliances (ISA)
  3. State Action Plan on Climate Change (SAPCC)
  4. FAME Scheme – for E-mobility
  5. Atal Mission for Rejuvenation & Urban Transformation (AMRUT) – for Smart Cities
  6. Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana – for access to clean cooking fuel
  7. UJALA scheme – for embracing energy efficient LED bulbs
  8. Swachh Bharat Mission

6 . Transfer of excess funds from RBI to Government

Provisions for transfer of surplus profit to Government of India (Should be read with daily current Affairs on RBI Reserves)

  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) transfers its surplus profits to the Government of India in terms of the provisions of Section 47 of the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934 which is as follows:
  • “After making provision for bad and doubtful debts, depreciation in assets, contributions to staff and superannuation funds and for all matters for which provision is to be made by or under this Act or which are usually provided for by bankers, the balance of the profits shall be paid to the Central Government.”

7 . Aqua Mega Food Park

Context : Union Minister Smt Harsimrat Kaur Badal commissioned Godavari Mega Aqua Food Park at Tundurru Village in Bhimavaram Mandal, West Godavari District, Andhra Pradesh 

About the Aqua Mega Food Park

  • The park is promoted by M/s Godavari Mega Aqua Food Park Pvt. Ltd.
  • This is the 1st Mega Aqua Food Park operationalised exclusively established for fish and marine products processing in the State of Andhra Pradesh.
  • The modern infrastructure for food processing created at Park will benefit the farmers, growers, processors and consumers of Andhra Pradesh and adjoining areas immensely and prove to be a big boost to the growth of the food processing sector in the State of Andhra Pradesh.

About Mega Food Park

  • To give a major boost to the food processing sector by adding value and reducing food wastage at each stage of the supply chain with particular focus on perishables, Ministry of Food Processing Industries is implementing Mega Food Park Scheme in the country.
  • Mega Food Parks create modern infrastructure facilities for food processing along the value chain from farm to market with strong forward and backward linkages through a cluster based approach.
  • Common facilities and enabling infrastructure is created at Central Processing Centre and facilities for primary processing and storage is created near the farm in the form of Primary Processing Centers (PPCs) and Collection Centers (CCs).
  • Under the Scheme, Government of India provides financial assistance uptoRs. 50.00 Crore per Mega Food Park project.

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