Observing geoethics in mining and in ground-water development: An Indian experience

Shrikant Daji Limaye


Two famous quotes from ‘Mahatma Gandhi’, the Indian philosopher, are helpful in describing the foundation of geoethics: (a) “God has provided enough resources for everyone’s need but not for everyone’s greed” and (b) “Before starting a development project, first think about the effects which the project would have on the poorest of the poor people in the Society”. Geoethics is relatively a new branch in geosciences. It lies at the meeting point of geosciences, sociology and philosophy. Much earlier in the history of sciences such as nuclear physics, biology or chemistry, ethical principles attracted the attention of social leaders and philosophers while using laboratory research for field trials and applications on a large scale. Using the research not for atomic bombs but for atomic energy and not for chemical weapons but for chemical products and drugs was the priority of social leaders. In Italy, geoethics originated with philosophers and later on got the support from geologist. In other countries geoscientists working primarily in mining industry promoted geoethics for ensuring socially responsible behavior on the part of mining companies.


Mining; Groundwater; Geoethical practices; India

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.4401/ag-5573
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Published by INGV, Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia - ISSN: 2037-416X