Current Affairs - Points to Ponder

Ecology & Environment :

Climate Change Adaptation

Facts in Brief

  • Recently tropical cyclones Tauktae and Yaas hit the Indian coastline. In recent years, many tropical cyclones originated from Arabian Sea. As per the government of India, the sea level is rising at a rate of 1.7 mm a year on average. India has a vast coastline of 8118 km.
  • Sunderban is the world’s largest contiguous mangrove forest with about 40 % of its 10,200 sq. km area under Indian territory. The vulnerability of Sunderban to extreme weather events, including tropical cyclones, poses a serious threat to islands like Mousuni and Ghoramara.

Read the following for the above topic:

  • World Bank report 2020.
  • National Adaptation Fund for Climate Change.
  • Initiatives of the government for the vulnerable islands of Mousuni and Ghoramara.
  • Reasons behind Arabian Sea tropical cyclones and initiatives taken by government, especially in the technology domain and with respect to association with stakeholders.
Sustainable and resilient climate change adaptation and mitigation strategies

India’s climate vulnerability is very high. Some states, districts and regions show a higher frequency of natural hazards, including extreme fluctuations in weather patterns, droughts, cyclonic storms, regional micro climatic changes, etc. What changes need to be brought about in development strategy? Discuss the need and importance of investing in cost effective, environment-friendly, sustainable and climate resilient infrastructure.

Read the following points for the above topic:

  1. As per analysis of CEEW (Council on Energy, Environment and Water), higher frequency of extreme weather in the last 50 years has recorded a 12 fold increase.
  2. During this period, associated cyclonic events like extreme rainfall, floods, sea level rise and thunderstorms increased in frequency and intensity over the country.
  3. Arabian Sea cyclones and west coast cyclones have a major impact of hotter summer, warmer days and droughts.
  4. Micro climatic changes are primary reasons causing regional floods and drought in the same season.
  5. Deforestation, encroachment upon wetlands and water bodies are the main causes of changing microclimatic patterns.
  6. There is an urgent need to invest in cost effective, environment-friendly, sustainable and climate resilient infrastructure in India, particularly in climate vulnerable states at the local and regional levels.
  7. Impact of National Cyclone Risk Mitigation Project 2015 for western coast and eastern coast; rules and regulations under NGT, IMD, NDRF and SDRF with emphasis on policy, schemes, programmes, constitutional provisions and SC judgments and guidelines.
Examine the challenges of NET ZERO emissions of greenhouse gases for India. When and how can we achieve the net zero target?

Study the following points for the above topic:

  1. Read about net zero emission. Year by which the emission target is to be achieved.
  2. Long-term strategy to achieve the target (Note: Focus on the provisions, targets, technological and economic support for clean development with reference to Rio Conventions-1992, Kyoto Commitments-1997, Copenhagen Conference-2009 and Paris Agreement-2015, etc.).
  3. The cumulative emissions in India and the strategy, schemes and programmes that India adopted from 1990 onwards.
  4. India's cumulative emissions (1990-till date) compared to developed nations.
  5. Examine the challenges and possible impacts for India in the following sectors: Economy, society, technology and international commitments.

Economic:

  1. Collection of massive taxes and excise duties on crude oil and refined products.
  2. Revenues of public sector oil and gas undertakings.
  3. Impact of railway subsidies on freight and passenger travel.
  4. Centre and state expenditure on health and education without fossil fuel taxes.

Social:

  1. Impact on employment generated by industries in the oil and gas (fossil fuels based) sector.
  2. Through renewable energy we can achieve our targets but the renewable energy sector does not create adequate employment opportunities.
  3. How we can create alternative employment options for public sector companies in the oil, gas and energy (fossil fuels based) sectors.

Technology:

  1. New technological developments, support and innovations in India and the world.

International Commitments:

  1. Read about international agreements, accords, conventions, commitments and cooperation, including past commitments that were not met.
Water is one of the major concerns of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In order to adequately meet all needs, water supply needs to be doubled by 2030. What kind of next generation technologies are required to achieve the stated objectives?

You need to study the following points for the above topic:

  1. The Composite Water Management Index, conceptualized and launched by NITI Aayog in 2018.
  2. Government of India's flagship initiatives under Atal Innovation Mission (AIM).
  3. International Green Strategic Partnership and collaborations like AIM-ICDK.
  4. Next generation technologies like digital water management, AI-enabled sewage treatment plant, non-revenue water solutions, bio-absorbent capsules, etc.
  5. Innovations and initiatives by IITs and other institutions.
  6. Follow the International Water Association Conference.