Conservation Of Non-Renewable Resources In India
This study finds that the consumption of minerals and oil reserves of India has grown several times faster than the GNP. This has reduced the estimated reserves of several Non-renewable Resources (NRRs), whose estimated life spans in India vary from 9 to 47 years. It uses the Liontief Input Output tables to decompose the gross demand for NRRs, and finds that private consumption expenditure is responsible for nearly half of their demand, followed by investment (28%), and exports (12%). However, the NRR intensity per rupee of expenditure is twice as high in investments and exports when compared to private consumption. Imports meet about half of the demand for NRRs in the Indian Economy. Direct imports of NRRs which were about 28% of total imports in 1989-90, satisfied about 35% of the total demand for NRRs in the Indian Economy. Other imports had an NRR content which met about 11% of the total NRR demand. In general, the NRR intensity of non-NRR imports is much higher than the NRR intensity of exports, indicating that India's foreign trade conserves Non-renewable resources on the whole. Looking at the different industrial sectors, it is found that the demand for NRRs is highly skewed, with about half of the total demand for NRRs being accounted for by three sectors, and 86% of the NRR demand being due to only nine sectors. Any strategy aiming to conserve non-renewable resources should concentrate on these sectors. Consumption expenditure in about 20 sectors of consumption was more NRR intensive (per rupee spent at 1989- 90 prices) than others. Likewise, exports in about 11 sectors were more NRR intensive than the average. An economic strategy to conserve non- renewable resources would do well to attempt to reallocate expenditures and exports away from these sectors to other sectors that are less NRR intensive.
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