Use and throw

  • 30/01/1999

Use and throw  Soon after Independence, India stepped into the second half of the 20th century with a spurt in the growth of heavy industries: industries that needed a large amount of heavy metals. Mining operations began on a large scale and mine wastes, sewers and belching chimneys pumped in large amounts of metals into the river channels and atmosphere.

Heavy metals are required either as catalysts or ingredients in the manufacturing process. They could also be part of the manufactured products. Among the industries with the highest emissions is the mining industry. Thermal power plants, chemicals and leather industries also contribute heavily to the heavy metal load.

mining and metallurgy : The Indian subcontinent is replete with minerals and almost every state has its own coal or metal reserves where mining is extensive. Most of these areas are regarded as heavy metal "hot spots' where extraction, processing and use of the metals are intense (see box: Hotter than hell ).

India is the fifth largest producer of coal. But this distinction is not without its disadvantages. Mining releases chromium, cadmium, lead and mercury

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