Environment & Ecology

Nuclear Power

4th March – Nuclear Power

Nuclear Power Recently, Prime Minister Modi and President Trump encouraged the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited and Westinghouse Electric Company to finalise the techno-commercial offer for the construction of six nuclear reactors in India at the earliest date. Concerns – It has been clear for years that electricity from American reactors would be more …

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21st February – Pesticides Management Bill, 2020

The Pesticides Management Bill, 2020, approved by the Cabinet for introduction in Parliament, is unlikely to live up to the expectations of stakeholders in the agro-chemicals sector despite having been drafted after prolonged deliberations over 12 years, and inputs from the parliamentary standing committee. Need for legislation – The need for putting in place an …

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15th February – Towards a new world order

Issues in new world – Social inequalities and the grim problems of stark and continuing poverty are at the epicentre of the new world.  The latest Oxfam Report presented at Davos points out that 2,153 billionaires have more wealth than 4.6 billion people.  The emergence of billionaires and oligarchs in different parts of the world …

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23rd January – Role of Gram Sabhas in sustainable growth

More than 300 million people including tribals live in and around forest areas in India, depending on forests for their sustenance and livelihood. Ecological security is the prime objective of National Forest Policy, 1988, but forest-dwelling communities cannot be separated from forests. Background – The involvement of communities in forest management was initiated in 1990 …

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17th January – Blue Flag Certification

Recently, the Centre issued an Extraordinary Gazette Notification declaring a list of activities and facilities that would be permissible in the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) areas of certain beaches, which have been identified for obtaining the ‘Blue Flag’ certification. Context – In July 2019, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) had identified …

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7th January – State of the Forest Report

India’s forest cover has increased by 3,976 sq km or 0.56% since 2017. For the second successive time since 2007, the biennial State of Forest Report (SFR) recorded a gain — an impressive 1,275 sq km — in dense forest (including Very Dense Forest with a canopy density of over 70%, and Moderately Dense Forest …

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2nd January – Why is it so cold this year?

This winter, in many parts of the region, maximum temperatures on some days have been nearly 10°C below normal. What is a ‘cold day’? A cold-day condition is said to prevail when the maximum temperature during the day is at least 4.5°C below normal. If the maximum temperature is at least 6.5°C below normal, it …

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23rd December – Renewable energy is the way forward

In a span of just seven days recently, two varying bits of information emerged on the climate change front for India. The first is that India lost 2,018 lives in 2018 due to the fallout of this crisis; and The second is that the country entered the league of top ten nations in Climate Change …

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14th December – Not many lessons learnt from water planning failures

Following the massive water crisis across India in the summer of 2019, the Central government hurriedly launched the Jal Shakti Abhiyan (JSA), a time-bound, mission-mode water conservation campaign to be carried out in two phases, across the 255 districts having critical and over-exploited groundwater levels. It aims to make water conservation a ‘people’s movement’ through …

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11th December – Climate treaty at a tipping point

The annual Climate Summit, with increasing levels of concentration of greenhouse gases, raises questions on global climate policy. Issue – The policy problem is that the Climate Treaty considers symptoms (emissions of greenhouse gases), rather than the causes (use of natural resources). What drove climate change? Three shifts in natural resource use have taken place …

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