Development of Mineral and Energy Resources Oil Refineries in India, Natural Gas, Atomic Minerals, Thorium, Uranium

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Development of Mineral and Energy Resources

Oil Refineries in India

  • The crude petroleum taken from oil fields needs to be refined before it can be used. Oil refining is really a big chemical engineering industry involving a complicated process. Presently there are 17 oil refineries in India under public sector and one in private sector which belongs to Reliance Industries Ltd. These refineries are at Digboi, Bongaigaon, and Nunamati in Assam; Mumbai (two) in Maharashtra; Vishakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh; Barauni in Bihar; Koyali in Gujarat; Mathura in Uttar Pradesh; Panipat in Haryana; Kochi in Kerala; Mangalore in Karnataka; and Chennai in Tamil Nadu.

  • The only private oil refineries belong to Reliance Industries Ltd. is located at Jamnagar in Gujarat. These oil refineries are supplied crude oil either by ships or by pipelines. Although the annual production shows an increasing trend, the country has to import petroleum and petroleum products to meet its requirements.

Natural Gas

  • Natural gas is emerging as an important source of commercial energy. Most of the time it is found in association with petroleum. The recoverable reserves of natural gas as on 1st April 2001 are estimated at 638 billion cubic metres. But this quantity will increase as more and more reserves are discovered at eastern coast namely Krishna, Godavari, and Mahanadi basins. Production of natural gas in 2003-04 was about 31 billion cubic metres.

  • The Gas Authority of India was established in the year 1984 with an aim for processing, transporting, distributing, and marketing of natural gas. The company owns and operates a network of over 5,340 km of natural gas pipeline in the country.

Atomic Minerals

Atomic energy can be produced by fission or fusion of the atoms or rather the nuclear parts of radio-active minerals like uranium, thorium, and radium. India possesses the world’s largest reserves of monazite, the principal source of thorium and some reserves of uranium.


  • In India, uranium is embedded in the igneous and metamorphic rocks in Jharkhand, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, and some parts of Himalaya. A substantial source of uranium deposits is also found in the monazite sands along the Kerala coast.

  • The production of uranium at present is confined to the mines at Jaduguda in Singhbhum district of Jharkhand. The total reserves of uranium in the country are enough to support 5,000-10,000 mw of electricity generating capacity.


Thorium is principally obtained from monazite. The beach sands of Kerala in Palghat and Quilon district contain the world’s richest monazite deposits. It also occurs on the sands of Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh.

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