- The European Commission (an executive branch of the EU) has launched an ambitious roadmap termed the Green Deal at the CoP25, Madrid event that aims to make Europe the first carbon-neutral continent by 2050 by addressing environmental challenges while, at the same time, promoting an efficient use of resources.
- India is among the top 10 nations (ranked 9th) for the first time as per the Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) released at the CoP25 Madrid, Spain.
- The CCPI 2020 results illustrate the main regional differences in climate protection and performance within the 57 evaluated countries and the EU.
- Indicators: The ranking results are defined by a country’s aggregated performance in 14 indicators within the four categories “GHG Emissions”, “Renewable Energy” and “Energy Use”, as well as on “Climate Policy”.
- Sweden leads the ranking on rank 4, followed by Denmark (5) and Morocco (6). The three countries are Chinese Taipei (59), Saudi Arabia (60) and the United States (61), rated low or very low across almost all categories.
- Still no country performs well enough in all index categories to achieve an overall very high rating in the index. Therefore, once again the first three ranks remain empty.
- Germanwatch, the NewClimate Institute and the Climate Action Network publish the Index annually.
- The Uttarakhand State Wildlife Board has cleared a proposal by the Wildlife Institute of India (WII) to introduce rhinoceroses in the Corbett Tiger Reserve (CTR) to boost tourism and revive the habits of species that survive on low-height grass. Rhinos were once found in the Terai grassland in the state and adjoining areas but were wiped out by poaching.
- The geographical terrain and environmental conditions in CTR are suitable for rhinos. The ideal sites chosen in Corbett are valley habitats bounded on either side by the lower Himalayas (north), Shivalik Hills (south) and the Ramganga Reservoir (east), which would also act as natural barriers to rhino movement outside these area, there by minimising conflict with people.
- The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) added 1,840 new species to its catalogue of plants and animals that risk extinction. The list now contains more than 30,000 species under threat of disappearing. The IUCN mentioned it was increasingly clear that climate change on its own was a growing threat.
- The latest update was released at COP25 climate talks in Madrid.
- It was an exercise conducted at sea off Vadinar in Gulf of Kutch by the Indian Coast Guard to reinforce the response mechanism for oil spill/pollution incidents and to fine-tune the actions required in such eventualities.
- The Gulf of Kutch (GoK) region handles 70 per cent of the oil imported by India and 11 Single point Moorings (SPMs) out of total 27 SPMs i.e. 42 per cent in the country are located in this area.
- Beaches in Maharashtra are more polluted with microplastics and macroplastics than those in Goa and Karnataka, according to a study conducted by Goa-based National Institute of Oceanography (NIO).
- The study has blamed plastic industries located near the shore and increased tourism activities for the pollution.
- Plastics less than five millimeters in length are called 'microplastics' and the relatively larger particles, of more than 5 mm, are classified as 'macroplastics'.
- The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has constituted a working group to suggest norms on Social Stock Exchanges (SSE) under the chairmanship of Ishaat Hussain, Director, SBI Foundation with 14 members.
- The so-called social stock exchanges in the country will allow companies operating in sectors such as health, environment and transportation to raise risk capital.
- In the Budget, the Centre had asked SEBI to initiate steps towards creating a social stock exchange.
Nasscom’s Data Security Council of India(DSCI) has collaborated with Union Ministry of Electronics and IT (MeitY) and Google India to launch ‘Digital Payment Abhiyan’.
About Digital Payment Abhiyan
- The campaign aims at increasing awareness about cashless payment, educate end-users on the benefits of making digital payments, online financial security and urge them to adopt security and safety best practices.
- It will be a pan-India campaign which will be crafted in seven languages — Hindi, English, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Bengali and Marathi.
- It will engage with users and make them aware of the dos and don’ts for different payment channels including UPI, wallets cards as well as netbanking and mobile banking