Reading Time: 13 mins In May, the thousands of tonnes of diesel spilled into the Ambarnaya River, turning its surface crimson. The Russian government had to declare a state of emergency amid criticism from environmentalists. Such a major accident in an environmentally sensitive zone has sparked serious concerns. In this context, India’s preparedness to deal with oil spills needs to be examined.
Reading Time: 9 mins Yet another addition to the series of industrial accidents and disasters plaguing India during the trying times of a global pandemic- recently dubbed ‘The Anthropause’. The Assam blowout that happened in May and the subsequent fires in June has claimed several lives apart from causing gross damage to the environment and the livelihood of the locals. This comes at a time when environmentalists are continuing to raise concerns about the draft Environmental Impact Assessment norms 2020. The current incident is presenting itself to India as a test of its ability to learn from its mistakes and prioritize what’s important in the long run.
Reading Time: 4 mins Recently, the Prime Minister reviewed the plans being envisaged for implementing the Arth Ganga project and pushed concerned states to speedily implement the projects under Arth Ganga. The PM also elaborated on the importance of the project in the sustainable development model with a focus on economic activities related to the river.
Reading Time: 11 mins The government’s recent proposal to ban 27 pesticides in India has garnered both support and opposition from various segments of the society. It is being welcomed by several exporters (like spice exporters) and is seen as a long-pending implementation of the Anupam Verma Committee recommendations. On the other hand, pesticide manufacturers are threatening to take the government to the court over this move. This proposal is significant given the danger to farmers’ income posed by invading pests like the fall army worm and more recently, locusts.
Reading Time: 9 mins The death of the elephant, nicknamed Saumya, in Kerala invited outrage from many sections of the society. The wild animal, which was pregnant with a calf, had eaten a pineapple stuffed with crackers. It had succumbed to its injuries standing in a river. The incident calls for a serious discussion of the prevalence of animal cruelty in India and a relook into the efficiency of various safeguards in place to eliminate the issue.
Reading Time: 10 mins Updates *
India has to be prepared for many destructing disasters of which Cyclone is a critical challenge. India has a coastline of about 7,516 km (Mainland-5,400 km, Islands- 132 km in Lakshadweep and 1,900 km in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands). Though the North Indian Ocean Basin generates only around 7% of the world’s cyclones, the impact is higher and very devastating, especially when they strike the coasts along the North Bay of Bengal. The recent Amphan cyclone that struck the Bay of Bengal coast is a case in point. *
Reading Time: 8 mins The recent gas leak in Visakhapatnam has thrown light on the expanding risk that industrial establishments pose to human settlements and the environment. The incident has occurred during the lockdown- an already vulnerable period for the country. However, this isn’t the first such incident. The NDMA (National Disaster Management Authority) identified more than 130 significant chemical accidents in the recent past and these have claimed 259 deaths and caused serious injuries to over 560 people.
Reading Time: 2 mins The recent gas leak from LG Polymers India unit in Andhra Pradesh’s Vishakhapatnam has affected 2,000 people in a 5km radius. 11 people have died and hundreds have been hospitalized.
Reading Time: 6 mins The U.N. World Meteorological Organization (WMO) recently declared that Ozone depletion over the Arctic though hit a “record level” in March (the biggest since 2011), the hole has now closed.
The ozone hole’s closing was due to a phenomenon called the polar vortex, and not because of reduced pollution levels due to Covid-19 lockdowns around the world.