News Crux Important Days/Weeks

16 September: International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer

The International Day for the preservation for the Ozone layer (World Ozone Day) is observed to spread awareness of the depletion of the Ozone Layer and search for solutions to preserve it.

The theme for 2021 World Ozone Day: ‘Montreal Protocol – keeping us, our food and vaccines cool.’

About Ozone Layer

  • The ozone layer is the common term for the high concentration of ozone that is found in the stratosphere around 15–30km above the earth's surface. It covers the entire planet and protects life on earth by absorbing harmful ultraviolet-B (UV-B) radiation from the sun.

Current Status of Ozone Layer

  • In January 2021, the Ozone Hole finally closed due to collective efforts of the entire world, according to the World Meteorological Organization.
  • According to experts, the ozone layer is estimated to return to the pre-1980 level by the year 2050.

India’s Initiative

  • The Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change devised the India Cooling Action Plan (ICAP) in 2019, aimed at providing an integrated vision towards reducing refrigerant transition, enhancing energy efficiency, and curbing cooling demands.

Background: Vienna Convention & Montreal Protocol

  • After a deal called Montreal Protocol on Substances that deplete the ozone layer signed by almost every country in 1987, the UN General Assembly, in 1994, proclaimed this day as the International Day for the Prevention of the Ozone Layer.
  • The Montreal Protocol was a deal for countries across the globe to curb the existence of all ozone-depleting substances such as aerosols, chlorofluorocarbon, halons, etc., widely used for cooling and refrigeration purposes. The usage of such harmful substances resulted in a hole in the ozone layers in Antarctica, first discovered in 1970, which led to acute global warming in the past 20 years.
  • However, the 1985 Vienna convention that gave rise to the Montreal Protocol did make a dent in the deadly disruption of the ozone layer.

News Crux Military Exercise & Operations


  • The 6th edition of Exercise PEACEFUL MISSION is being hosted by Russia in the Orenburg Region of South-West Russia from 13 to 25 September 2021.
  • The aim of the exercise is to foster close relations between SCO member states and to enhance the abilities of the military leaders to command multi-national military contingents.
  • The Indian military contingent comprising of an all arms combined force of 200 personnel to include 38 personnel from the Indian Air Force is participating in the Exercise PEACEFUL MISSION -2021.
  • Joint Counter Terrorism Exercise PEACEFUL MISSION is a Multilateral Exercise, which is conducted biennially as part of military diplomacy between Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) member states.

Current News National Indian Art, Culture & Heritage

India to organise First-ever Global Buddhist Conference

From 19th to 20th November 2021, India will organise the first-ever Global Buddhist Conference that will become an annual feature.

  • It will be held in Nalanda, Bihar in the campus of the Nava Nalanda Mahavihara.
  • The event is being planned by Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR).

Aim of this Conference

  • This is an academic conference to make India a center of Buddhism, not about tourism.
  • It is about making center for Buddhist activities, like academics, cultural, seminars, people traveling for festival - Buddha Purnima, Vesak. ICCR is also going to have a manuscript repository.

New Award for Promotion of Buddhism

  • ICCR has announced an award for the promotion of Buddhist studies which will be given on 21st November in Delhi by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
  • The award carries a cash reward of $20,000 (around Rs 14.7 lakh), a plaque, and a gold-plated medallion.

Four Regional Conferences before Main Conference

  • In the run-up to the conference, four regional conferences in India - Telangana, Saranath, Gangtok and Dharamshala and abroad - in Japan, South Korea, Thailand and Cambodia will be organised. Reports of these regional conferences will be presented at the Global Buddhist Conference.

PIB News Ecology & Environment

Teeth of a New Species of Hybodont Shark of Jurassic Age discovered from Jaisalmer

In a rare discovery, teeth of new species of hybodont shark of Jurassic age have been reported for the first time from Jaisalmer by a team of officers from the Geological Survey of India (GSI), Western Region, Jaipur.

  • Hybodont sharks have been reported for the first time from the Jurassic rocks (approximately, between 160 and 168 million-years-old) of the Jaisalmer region of Rajasthan.
  • Hybodonts, an extinct group of sharks, was a dominant group of fishes in both marine and fluvial environments during the Triassic and early Jurassic time. However, hybodont sharks started to decline in marine environments from the Middle Jurassic onwards until they formed a relatively minor component of open-marine shark assemblages. Hybodonts finally became extinct at the end of the Cretaceous time 65 million years ago.
  • The newly discovered crushing teeth from Jaisalmer represent a new species named by the research team as Strophodus jaisalmerensis.
  • The genus Strophodus has been identified for the first time from the Indian subcontinent and is only the third such record from Asia, the other two being from Japan and Thailand.