Goaltide Daily Current Affairs 2023

Dec 08, 2023

Current Affair 1:
Production of new and renewable energy resources from bioenergy sources



Bioenergy is a form of renewable energy generated when we burn biomass fuel. Biomass fuels come from organic material such as harvest residues, purpose-grown crops and organic waste from our homes, businesses and farms.

Biomass can be divided into three types of classes. Solid biomass refers to waste from urban areas, such as MSW, or agricultural or forestry products. The gaseous biomass is found in the waste generated in the agricultural production processes and the liquid biomass comes from crops, such as sugarcane, which produces biofuels.

The Government has taken various steps to promote production of new and renewable energy resources from bioenergy sources, including from agricultural residue across the country. These steps, inter alia, includes the following:

  1. Launch of the National Bioenergy Programme (NBP) in November, 2022 with budgetary outlay of Rs. 1715 Crore for a period 01.04.2021 to 31.03.2026 to be implemented in two phases.
  2. Under the GOBARDHAN scheme implemented by Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation, Ministry of Jal Shakti, a financial assistance up to Rs.50.00 lakh per district is available for setting up of community biogas plants in villages, blocks / district.
  3. Ministry of Power has notified SAMARTH Mission (National Mission on Use of Biomass in Thermal Power Plants) for promoting the blending of biomass in the existing coal powered thermal power plants.
  4. Central Pollution Control Board has notified guidelines to provide financial support for setting up of Biomass Pellet plants in the NCT of Delhi, states of Punjab and Haryana and NCR districts of Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. An initial corpus of Rs. 50crore has been earmarked for utilization through these guidelines.

Current Affair 2:
Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI)


News: The 2023 GPAI Summit took place in New Delhi, India, on 12-14 December 2023.


Launched in June 2020, GPAI is a multistakeholder initiative bringing together leading experts from science, industry, civil society, international organizations and government that share values to bridge the gap between theory and practice on AI by supporting cutting-edge research and applied activities on AI-related priorities.

Built around a shared commitment to the OECD Recommendation on Artificial Intelligence, GPAI brings together engaged minds and expertise from science, industry, civil society, governments, international organisations and academia to foster international cooperation.


Membership in GPAI is open to countries, including emerging and developing countries. Members are expected to provide funding for the GPAI Secretariat principally through voluntary financial contributions.

Launched in June 2020 with 15 members, today GPAI’s membership has expanded to 28 member countries and the European Union. India is one of the founding members of GPAI.

Current Affair 3:
Hydropower generation targets



The Union Minister for Power and New & Renewable Energy has informed that power generation from hydro-electric projects in the country during the last 3 years and the current year, against the target set by the Central Electricity Authority, is as given below.

Thus, the hydropower generation has consistently exceeded the targets.  During the current year, it is less than the target mainly due to floods during July 2023 in Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand and devastating floods in Sikkim during October 2023, which affected generation as planned.

If we see State / UT-wise hydro power potential and its status of development in the country: Himachal Pradesh is highest.

The Government of India has taken various policy measures to increase the generation from hydro power. These measures would not only help in development of the upcoming hydro power projects but also improve the generation. Some of the measures taken are as under:

  1. Declaration of large hydro power projects (of more than 25 MW capacity) as renewable energy source
  2. Notification of Hydro Purchase Obligations (HPO)
  3. Budgetary support for construction of enabling infrastructure, i.e. roads/bridges
  4. Issuance of guidelines on 10.04.2023 to promote Pumped Storage Projects.

Current Affair 4:
Dam Rehabilitation and Improvement Project (DRIP)



Government of India, with financial assistance from the World Bank initiated Dam Rehabilitation and Improvement Project (DRIP) in April 2012 with an objective to improve the safety and operational performance of selected existing dams along with dam safety institutional strengthening with system wide management approach. It was a State Sector Scheme with Central component.

The Scheme had rehabilitation provision for 223 dams located in seven States (Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Tamil Nadu and Uttarakhand) with 10 Implementing Agencies on board. The CWC had been entrusted with overall coordination and supervision.

DRIP Phase II & Phase III

Based on the success of DRIP, Ministry of Jal Shakti initiated another externally funded Scheme DRIP Phase II and Phase III. This new Scheme has nineteen (19) States, and three Central Agencies on board. The Union Cabinet has approved the Scheme on October 29, 2020. The Scheme has been declared effective on October 12, 2021.

The Phase II of the Scheme is being co-financed by two multi-lateral funding Agencies – World Bank and Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), with funding of US$ 250 million each.

The funding pattern of Scheme is 80:20 (Special Category States), 70:30 (General Category States) and 50:50 (Central Agencies). The Scheme also has provision of Central Grant of 90% of loan amount for special category States (Manipur, Meghalaya and Uttarakhand).

The Scheme has four components;

  1. Rehabilitation of dams and associated appurtenances to improve the safety and operational performance of selected existing dams and associated appurtenances in a sustainable manner, and
  2. (ii) Dam safety Institutional Strengthening to strengthen the dam safety institutional setup in participating States as well as on a Central level,
  3. Incidental Revenue Generation for sustainable operation and maintenance of dams, and 
  4. Project Management.

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