This page was designed to be viewed with a browser that supports Cascading Style Sheets [CSS] and if you are using earlier versions [pre- ver.5.0] of Internet Explorer or Netscape Navigator,you are missing out on a pleasant viewing experience. It is best that you upgrade your browser soon as most of the sites will increasingly make use of CSS.

 gniLogo GoodNewsIndia ::Supplement

India proves that diversity in society --just as in nature-- gives immunity and longevity. ©

Prev: Women Sarpanchs to hoist flags in Maharashtra  |  Next: S Narayanaswamy :: Solar Cooking


Jan 10, 2003
Taming the fly ash menace.

Fresh amendments to the Fly Ash Rules are likely to go far in converting an unavoidable pollutant into a rich resource. The amendment also shows that unbeknownst to the average citizen the State behemoth does keep track of a wide variety of issues.

Fly ash is the fluffy by product resulting from burning coal in power stations. It is easily air borne and the only way to dispose it off was to dump it in excavations and keep it wet to prevent it from polluting the air. India is faced with 90 million tonnes of fly ash and has used up 65,000 acres of land as fly ash dumps.

But fly ash is a very usable resource. Indian coal ‘s ash is luckily does not contain toxic elements inclusions like sulphur and radio nuclides. It can be used in brick and cement manufacturing, as an additive to cement mortar, converted to an aggregate to blend with concrete, used in forming roads, embankments and dykes, converted to products like door and window frames to replace wood and so on. The Central Building Research Institute in Roorkee has for decades been researching fly ash applications.

The 1999 Fly ash Rules notified by the Ministry of Forests and Environment required manufacturers of tiles, bricks and hollow blocks within a 50 km radius of coal power stations to mix at least 25% fly ash into their inputs. The idea was to dispose off a waste while slowing down excavation of natural resources. The fresh amendments extend the area to a 100 km radius.

But there is a delicious twist built in: the onus has now shifted from manufacturers to users. Now, it is the builders’ responsibility to use a minimum of 25% fly ash products in all construction in the specified area. And there is a progressive time schedule specified by which 100% of all possible building materials have to be fly ash based. This would create a huge market for waste recycled tiles, bricks, hollow blocks and cement. Since India’s power stations will burn coal well into the foreseeable future this win-win policy will expand the economy, create jobs and save the environment.

Lay pay a silent tribute to our much reviled mandarins.
An earlier GoodNewsIndia story on the uses of fly ash in agriculture
An overview of the fly ash issue
Fly ash products
Full text of the amended rules

Directories:: MagazineSupplementsBackstage
Print:: Text & ImagesText only

Send This Story To Friends


GNI Mailing List
Sign UpLeave

Articles by category: ALL  Appeal  Activism  Economy  Elsewhere  Energy  Enthusiast  Environment  Governance  Ideas For India  Initiative  Innovation  Memory Speaks  Newsclip  Profile  Reforms  Resources  Sciences  Springs  Trend  Update  Water 

Write to GoodNewsIndia

 Shop at Amazon::Support GNI 

Internet Explorer distorts many of the styling features of this site. Switch to Firefox