NATURAL RESOURCES

 

Natural Resources

Oil and Natural Gas are vital minerals found in Assam. The state has a crude Oil reserve of over 1.3 billion tonnes and Natural Gas of over 156 billion cubic meters. The state is responsible for India’s 15% crude oil output. The wells at Digboi, Dukiajan, Sivasagar, Moran etc produce Natural Gas that can be accredited to 50% of India’s total onshore production. Assam is well endowed with mineral resources among which Limestone with about 700 million tones is one of the important mineral available in all grades. The China- Clay of Karbi Anglong districts is another significant input for the Ceramic industries. Assam is also famous for its coal output with a total production of 320 million tonnes. The coal found in Upper Assam and the Central Assam Highland has high sulfur content, high volatile matter content, high calorific value and low ash content. Assam also has a large deposit of Granite, estimated to be more than a billion Cubic Meters that have a huge domestic and export market.

Mineral Resources:
Oil and natural gas, coal, limestone, base metal, beryl, granite, clay, gypsum, iron, mica, mineral water, sillimanite and salt.

Forest Resources:
Forest is a major component of Assam nearly a quarter of its land mass and half of it constituted of Reserve forest furnished with plentiful rainfall. The forests of Assam produce commercially useful resources like timber, bamboo, stone etc.

Medicinal and aromatic plants (MAPs) are an important part of Assam as many as 300 types of Medicinal herbs and pants are known to exist in the state. As per one estimate, 5-10% of the Plants and Herbs are commercially cultivated for extraction purposes and hence there is a lot of potential in this sector that can contribute to the local economy, subsistence health needs and improve natural resource management.

Horticulture products of Assam include:

Major Fruits: Pineapple, Banana, Coconut, Jackfruits, etc.

Major Citrus Fruits: Orange, Assam Lemon etc.

Major spices: Ginger, Turmaric, Bhut Jolokia, Chilies, pepper etc.

Sericulture
Three types of silks are found in Assam, namely- Eri, Muga, and Pat (Mulberry). The Muga Silk is a unique silk found in Assam, it is popularly known as Golden Fibre and has already obtained Geographical Indication (GI) Certification. The sericulture industry in Assam can achieve required results if it gets continuous boost financially from the government and non-governmental organizations. If proper measures are adopted for the upliftment of farmers, rearers and weavers in this industry, surely this industry will see an enhancement of production in the future.

Water Resources:
Assam has the unique advantage of 430 million acres feet of water resources which is used to generate hydro-electric power, widen the irrigation network and used as an inland water transport network. There is also considerable ground water resource in the Brahmaputra and Barak river basins which holds good prospects for utilisation.