March 20, 2023

Environmental Issues

General Studies Paper 4 Context:  Over the last year, the Union government has laid emphasis on promoting sustainable tourism  in the Himalayan region. Background: The Indian Himalayan region, with its rich biodiversity, offers conditions suitable for several activities(recreation/adventure/religious pilgrimages) and attracts a large number of visitors from all over the world. As tourism is an important source of income and livelihood for people living in this region, it must be ensured that these activities take place in a sustainable manner. Recent efforts: National Strategy for Sustainable Tourism and Responsible Traveller Campaign Launched in 2022 by the Union Ministry of Tourism, it focuses on Promotion of environmental,....Read More

General Studies Paper 3 Context: Compensatory afforestation forms a significant component of various reforestation programmes being implemented in India.  Background: India has promised to increase its forest and tree cover to absorb an additional 2.5 – 3 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent by 2030. However, the forestry target is difficult to achieve due to the need for rapid industrial, infrastructure development, and urbanisation. In the last 10 years,more than 1,611 square km of forest land (a third of this in the last three years) has been cleared. But government data shows that total forest cover had increased by 1,540 square km in the two....Read More

General Studies Paper 3 Context: Deforestation has become a critically sensitive issue globally in recent years, and there is a greater need for the certification of forests. What is Forest Certification?  Forest Certification offers a multi-layer audit system that seeks to authenticate the origin, legality, and sustainability of forest-based products such as timber, furniture, handicraft, paper and pulp, rubber, and many more. The certification is done to avoid consumption of any product that might be the result of deforestation or illegal logging. Forest Certification Industry It is a three-decade-old global certification industry that began through independent third-party audits to review that management in a sustainable manner. There are two major international standards:....Read More

General Studies Paper 3 Context: A new Study Warns of doubling of Plastic Consumption in G20 countries by 2050 without new policies. Plastic Consumption across Globe According to a report by the Back to Blue initiative, Plastic consumption in G20 countries may nearly double by 2050 unless new global policies are put in place to reduce its use. Countries with the highest economic and population growth are likely to see the largest increase in plastic consumption in the coming decades. Plastic consumption is expected to nearly double by 2050, reaching 451 million tonnes from 261 million tonnes in 2019. Single-use plastic ban is the most effective policy,but....Read More

General Studies Paper 3 Context: The Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) and Ember has recently released a report titled “Indian States’ Energy Transition“. The report highlighted the glaring inequality in the Clean Energy Transition of States. As per the report, Karnataka now has the best-equipped power systems to convert its electricity system from fossil-powered to renewable energy sources, followed by Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat. On the other hand, Bihar, Haryana, and Uttar Pradesh did the worst. What is a clean electricity transition?  This refers to the shift from fossil-based power production and consumption to renewable energy sources by transforming the electricity sector through innovative policies, efficient technologies, and greener market pulls while ensuring reliable supply with effective closed-loop systems in place. An effective clean electricity transition requires a timely switch towards a clean power-fuelled, economically feasible, politically viable, and secure system that can create value for business and society. What are the report’s key highlights on the Clean Energy Transition of States?  The report analyses 16 states that account for 90 percent of India’s yearly power demand. Theirscores were calculated based on states’ performance on four major dimensions. Such as Decarbonisation, Performance of the Power System, Readiness of the Power Ecosystem, and Policies and Political Karnataka:  Karnataka ranks first in all four dimensions of the clean energy transition. The state fared the best in decarbonizing its power sector and has the highest share of renewables in its power supply mix (48%). Only Delhi’s power sector’s emission intensity of GSDP is lower than that of Karnataka (2.2 kgCO2eq/Rs1,000). Haryana has the lowest installed capacity of older, more polluting coal power plants. Maharashtra: It has the biggest power demand in India and was found to be in the mid-range. This is mostly because the state is slow to use renewable energy and can’t shut down older, more polluting coal power plants. Its renewable energy share (11%) is lower than most other states. Chhattisgarh has the highest emissions intensity of GSDP (43 kgCO2eq/ Rs1,000). Its renewable energy share....Read More

General Studies Paper 3 Context: The Government is pushing hard for transition to Green Economy. One vital aspect of this transition is transition to Green Mobility. Enhancing the share of Electric Vehicles in transportation is necessary to ensure green mobility. The finding of Lithium deposits in J&K and possibility of developing domestic battery manufacturing ecosystem in India has led to new excitement about EVs. However, the adoption of EVs still faces several hurdles. Addressing these challenges is necessary to ensure greening and decarbonisation of the transportation sector. EVs and their benefits: Electric Vehicles (EVs) have an electric motor instead of....Read More

General Studies Paper 3 Context: Union Budget 2023 mentioned“Green Growth” as one of the seven priorities or Saptarishis. About Biodiversity Biodiversity or biological diversity is the variety and variability of life on Earth.  Biodiversity is a measure of variation at the genetic, species, and ecosystem levels. Identified species: The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)states that only about 1.75 million species have so far been identified, including numerous insects, while there may be some 13 million species. Significance: Interaction, coexistence & codependence: Sum and variation of our biological wealth, known as biodiversity, is essential to the future of this planet. Often called the web of life, biodiversity signifies the variety....Read More

General Studies Paper 3 Context: Recently, there are large cracks appearing on the Badrinath highway. From Joshimath, to the river city of Karanprayag, to the eastern edges of Himachal, the disturbing shifts and slides of the ground pose big questions for the protection of the Himalayan ecosystem. WHAT IS THE PRESENT STATE OF ECOLOGICAL DAMAGE IN INDIA? The past century has seen the disappearance of almost a third of the country’s forest cover; many tree, plant and insect species are extinct or headed in that direction. Millions of hectares of grassland and sanctuaries are encroached upon by either the local....Read More

General Studies Paper 3 Context: The world is preparing itself for an energy transition from fossil fuel to green energy. Around 133 countries have pledged to a “net-zero carbon emissions Most govts, corporates and civic entities have also shown determination to “phase down” and eventually phase out fossil fuels from their energy basket. However, world is still highly dependent on fossil fuels. The natural gas and oil prices have also been turbulent in the past year due to demand supply mismatches and geopolitics. What should be the factors that need to be considered while designing policies for green transition?   Any future energy....Read More

General Studies Paper 3 Context: The most critical and pressing issue in front of the world and coming generations is to contain the global temperature rise within 1.5o Greenhouse gases (GHGs) are the reason for this temperature rise. Therefore, all the mechanisms and sustainable alternatives must be implemented to mitigate the climate risk. Climate change is having profound impacts on India. This includes adverse impacts on agriculture, water resources, forest and biodiversity, health, coastal management, and an increase in temperature. Heat waves have become more common and severe with many cities reporting temperatures above 48oCelsius. The decline in agricultural productivity....Read More

© 2023 Civilstap Himachal Design & Development