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ENVIRONMENT REVISION NOTES


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Contents
Star(*) marked topics are important as they were in news after May 2017.

Treaties and Agreements ................................................................................................. 3


Timeline ........................................................................................................................................... 3
Agenda 21 ......................................................................................................................................... 3
Basel Convention ............................................................................................................................. 4
Brundtland Report .......................................................................................................................... 4
Capacity-Building Initiative for Transparency(CBIT) Fund ......................................................... 4
Convention on Biological Diversity ................................................................................................ 5
Convention to Combat Desertification ........................................................................................... 6
Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) * ....................... 6
Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) *6
Kigali Amendment to Montreal Protocol ....................................................................................... 6
Kyoto Protocol *............................................................................................................................... 7
Minamata Convention on Mercury * ..............................................................................................8
Montreal Protocol * ......................................................................................................................... 8
Nairobi Declaration ......................................................................................................................... 9
New Urban Agenda - Habitat III .................................................................................................... 9
Paris Agreement .............................................................................................................................. 9
Ramsar Convention * .................................................................................................................... 10
Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD) ................................11
Rio Declaration ............................................................................................................................... 11
Rotterdam Convention ................................................................................................................... 11
Stockholm 1972 .............................................................................................................................. 12
Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants ........................................................... 12
United Nations Conference on Environment and Development ................................................ 12
UNFCC ........................................................................................................................................... 12
Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer * ...................................................... 13
Environmental Organizations ....................................................................................... 14
Adaptation Fund under Kyoto Protocol ....................................................................................... 14
Alliance of Small Island States...................................................................................................... 14
Birdlife International * .................................................................................................................. 14
Centre for Science and Environment ........................................................................................... 15
Global Environment Facility (GEF) * ........................................................................................... 15
Green Climate Fund * .................................................................................................................... 15
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change .............................................................................. 15
Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services ............. 16
International Tropical Timber Organisation ............................................................................... 16
International Whaling Commission ............................................................................................. 16
International Solar Alliance * ....................................................................................................... 16
International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)............................................................ 17
National Adaptation Fund for Climate Change ........................................................................... 17
SAWEN........................................................................................................................................... 17
United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) .................................................................... 17
World Meteorological Organisation ............................................................................................. 18
World Nature Organisation .......................................................................................................... 18
National Environmental Framework ............................................................................ 18
Animal Welfare Board of India ..................................................................................................... 18
Biological Diversity Act, 2002 ...................................................................................................... 18
CAMPA ........................................................................................................................................... 18
Crocodile Conservation Project .................................................................................................... 19
Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) .................................................................................................... 19
Environment Protection Act, 1986 .............................................................................................. 20
Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) ........................................................................... 20

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Indian Forest Act, 1927 ................................................................................................................ 20


MIKE .............................................................................................................................................. 21
National Action Plan on Climate Change ..................................................................................... 21
National Air Quality Index * ......................................................................................................... 22
National Green Corps Program .................................................................................................... 22
National Institute of Animal Welfare ........................................................................................... 22
Project Elephant ............................................................................................................................ 23
Project Snow Leopard * ................................................................................................................. 23
Project Tiger ................................................................................................................................... 23
Rhino Conservation ....................................................................................................................... 24
Vulture Conservation ....................................................................................................................24
Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 ........................................................................................................ 25
Parks and Sanctuaries (Came in news) ......................................................................... 26
Banni Grassland ............................................................................................................................26
Bhitarkanika National Park ..........................................................................................................26
Buxa Tiger Reserve * ..................................................................................................................... 27
Gahirmatha Marine Sanctuary ..................................................................................................... 27
Idukky Wildlife Sanctuary.............................................................................................................28
Kanha Tiger Reserve......................................................................................................................28
Karnala Bird Sanctuary .................................................................................................................28
Kaziranga National Park ...............................................................................................................28
Khangchendzonga National Park ................................................................................................. 29
Manas National Park ..................................................................................................................... 29
Nalbana Bird Sanctuary *..............................................................................................................29
Orang tiger reserve ........................................................................................................................30
Periyar National Park * .................................................................................................................30
Ramsar Sites of India .................................................................................................................... 31
Sahara Forest Project * .................................................................................................................. 31
Simlipal National park * ................................................................................................................ 32
Turtle sanctuary in Allahabad * .................................................................................................... 32
Species (Came in news) ................................................................................................. 32
Barasingha ..................................................................................................................................... 32
Blackbuck * .................................................................................................................................... 33
Blank-necked Crane ...................................................................................................................... 33
Chiru (Tibetan Antelope) *............................................................................................................ 33
Egyptian vulture * .......................................................................................................................... 34
Eurasian Otter................................................................................................................................ 34
Gangetic River Dolphin ................................................................................................................. 35
Golden Mahseer ............................................................................................................................. 35
Great Indian Bustard ..................................................................................................................... 35
Himalayan Griffon Vultures.......................................................................................................... 35
Himalayan Brown Bear ................................................................................................................. 36
Himalayan Wolf ............................................................................................................................. 36
Invasive Species ............................................................................................................................. 36
Irrawaddy dolphins *..................................................................................................................... 36
Kashmir Red Stag .......................................................................................................................... 36
Kuji Mendha .................................................................................................................................. 37
Moss * ............................................................................................................................................. 37
Nilgai .............................................................................................................................................. 37
Ochotona sikimaria ....................................................................................................................... 37
Olive Ridley Turtles * .................................................................................................................... 37
Red Sanders/Red Sandalwood /Saunders Wood * .....................................................................38
Sangai Brow-Antlered Deer ..........................................................................................................38
Sawfish *.........................................................................................................................................38
Sloth Bear .......................................................................................................................................38
White Cheeked Macaque ...............................................................................................................38
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White Tiger * ..................................................................................................................................38


Miscellaneous (Came in news) ...................................................................................... 39
Aerosols .......................................................................................................................................... 39
Antlers ............................................................................................................................................ 39
Biochemical Oxygen demand * ..................................................................................................... 39
Biodiversity ................................................................................................................................... 40
Bio-medical waste ......................................................................................................................... 40
Carbon Neutrality ......................................................................................................................... 40
CFCs and OZONE * ...................................................................................................................... 40
Climate Smart Agriculture ............................................................................................................ 41
Dead Zone in Sea ........................................................................................................................... 41
Earth Day ....................................................................................................................................... 41
Eco-Sensitive Zone ........................................................................................................................ 41
Environmentally Friendly Plastics ............................................................................................... 42
Fly Ash ............................................................................................................................................42
Gaj Yatra * ......................................................................................................................................42
Graphene based censor ................................................................................................................. 43
Ice Shelf .......................................................................................................................................... 43
Keystone Species............................................................................................................................ 43
Light Pollution ............................................................................................................................... 43
Mangalajodi Ecotourism Trust * ..................................................................................................44
Mission Innovation........................................................................................................................44
Operation Save Kurma * ............................................................................................................... 44

Treaties and Agreements

Timeline

1971: Convention on Wetlands of International Importance ("Ramsar Convention")


1972: Stockholm Declaration
1973: Convention on International Trade in Endangered species of Wild flora and fauna (CITES)
1982: Nairobi Declaration
1985: Vienna convention for the protection of ozone layer
1987: Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer
1987: Our Common Future: Report of the World Commission on Environment and Development ("Brundtland
Report")
1992: Agenda 21
1992: Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)
1992: Convention on Biological Diversity
1997: Protocol to the UNFCCC ("Kyoto Protocol")
1998: Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in
International Trade ("Rotterdam Convention")
2000: The Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety ("Cartagena Protocol")
2001: Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants ("Stockholm Convention")
2010: The Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits arising
from their Utilization to the Convention on Biological Diversity (‘Nagoya Protocol’)
2012: United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development – RIO +20
2015: Paris Agreement (To replace Kyoto Protocol)

Agenda 21
 Non-binding
 Voluntary
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 It is an action plan of United Nations


 Related with sustainable development
 It is a product of Earth Summit (UN Conference on Environment and Development) held in Rio de Janeiro,
Brazil, in 1992.
 It is an action agenda for the UN, other multilateral organizations, and individual governments around the
world that can be executed at local, national, and global levels.
 The "21" in Agenda 21 refers to the 21st Century.
 It has been affirmed and had a few modifications at subsequent UN conferences.

Basel Convention

 Formally called: The Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes
and Their Disposal
 It is an international treaty
 It is a UN Treaty
 Open for signature in 1989
 Effective from 1992
 Signatories : 53
 Parties : 183
 What it does?
 Aims to reduce the movements of hazardous waste between nations, and specifically to prevent transfer of
hazardous waste from developed to less developed countries
 The Convention is also intended to :
 minimize the amount and toxicity of wastes generated,
 to ensure their environmentally sound management as closely as possible to the source of
generation, and
 to assist LDCs in environmentally sound management of the hazardous and other wastes they
generate
 It does not address the movement of radioactive waste.
 Its objective was to stop dumping of hazardous waste from developed countries in developing nations.

Brundtland Report
 Formally called: Our Common Future: Report of the World Commission on Environment and Development
 In 1987
 Gave concept of "sustainable development"
 The Brundtland Commission's characterization of 'sustainable development' is development that meets the
needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
 The prominence given to 'needs' reflects a concern to eradicate poverty and meet basic human needs, broadly
understood.
 The concept of sustainable development focused attention on finding strategies to promote economic and social
development in ways that avoided environmental degradation, over-exploitation or pollution, and side lined less
productive debates about whether to prioritize development or the environment.

Capacity-Building Initiative for Transparency(CBIT) Fund

CBIT is an outcome of the UNFCCC's Paris agreement in 2015 and expected to address the issue of transparency

Objectives:
 To help developing countries monitor and report the progress on their climate actions
 Strengthening of national institutions of participating members in transparency related activities with respect to
the Nationally Determined Contributions
 To bring transparency in the financial help, technology transfer and capacity building support by the developed
countries to developing countries. Both have to provide relevant information

Design:
 The fund will be set up by the GEF, with financial support from the developed nations like US, UK, Canada etc.
 World Bank has been requested to act as the trustee for the fund, who was also a trustee in the initial hand
holding of GEF

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Significance:
 Many developing countries lack the necessary capacity to monitor and report their progress on the front of
INDCs
 This fund helps developed countries to take on board the developing countries in developing their domestic
capacities leading to transparent mechanisms in reporting the progress

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Convention on Biological Diversity


 Also known as Biodiversity Convention
 It is a multilateral treaty
 Opened for signature on 5 June 1992 in Rio De Janeiro
 Entered into force in 1993
 Signatories : 168
 Parties : 196
 It is legally binding
 Convention has 3 main goals :
a. Conservation of biological diversity
b. Sustainable use of its components; and
c. Fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from genetic resources
 India plays an active part in this treaty. India is a party to convention
 USA has signed but not ratified.
 Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety :
o Also known as biosafety protocol
o Adopted in 2000; Came into force in 2003
o The Biosafety Protocol seeks to protect biological diversity from the potential risks posed by living
modified organisms resulting from modern biotechnology.
o Genetically Modified Organisms can be regulated under this protocol
 Nagoya Protocol:
o Adopted in Conference of Parties 10 (CoP10) (2010)
o It deals with access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their
Utilization to the Convention on Biological Diversity

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o It is a supplementary agreement to the Convention on Biological Diversity.


o The Strategic Plan consists of 20 new biodiversity targets for 2020, termed the 'Aichi Biodiversity
Targets'

Convention to Combat Desertification

 It is a UN convention
 It is a convention to Combat Desertification in Those Countries Experiencing Serious Drought
and/or Desertification, particularly in Africa
 Opened for sign in 1994 in Paris
 Became effective from 1995 (Canada withdrew. First to do so)
 Parties : 196
 HQ : Bonn, Germany
 It is the only convention which stem out from direct recommendations of Rio Agenda 21
 It is the only internationally legally binding framework set up to address the problem of desertification

Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) *

 CMS is an international treaty concluded under aegis of United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP),
concerned with conservation of wildlife and habitats on a global scale.
 It is commonly abbreviated as Convention on Migratory Species (CMS) or the Bonn Convention.
 CMS aims to conserve terrestrial, marine and avian migratory species throughout their range.
 It was signed in 1979 in Bonn (hence the name), Germany and entered into force in 1983.
 Its headquarters are in Bonn, Germany.
 Since its entry into force, its membership has grown steadily to include over 120 Parties from Africa, Central and
South America, Asia, Europe and Oceania.
 CMS is only global and UN-based intergovernmental organization established exclusively for conservation
and management of terrestrial, aquatic and avian migratory species throughout their range.

Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora


(CITES) *
 Formally Called : Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.
 It is also known as Washington Convention
 It is a multilateral Treaty
 Participation is voluntary
 It is legally binding on the Parties, but it does not take the place of national laws.
 Opened for sign : 1973
 Parties : 182
 Aims to protect endangered plants and animals.
 Its aim is to ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animals and plants does not threaten the
survival of the species in the wild, and it accords varying degrees of protection to more than 35,000 species of
animals and plants.
 It classifies plants and animals according to three categories, or appendices, based on how threatened :
1. Appendix I: It lists species that are in danger of extinction. It prohibits commercial trade of these plants
and animals except in extraordinary situations for scientific or educational reasons.
2. Appendix II: They are those that are not threatened with extinction but that might suffer a serious
decline in number if trade is not restricted. Their trade is regulated by permit.
3. Appendix III: They are protected in at least one country that is a CITES member states and that has
petitioned others for help in controlling international trade in that species.
 In addition CITES also restricts trade in items made from such plants and animals, such as food, clothing,
medicine, and souvenirs.

Kigali Amendment to Montreal Protocol


What is Kigali Amendment?
 It amends the 1987 Montreal Protocol
 It aims to phase out Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), a family of potent greenhouse gases by the late 2040s

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 Under Kigali Amendment, in all 197 countries, including India have agreed to a timeline to reduce the use of
HFCs by roughly 85% of their baselines by 2045.

What is significance of the Kigali Amendment?


 The Kigali Amendment amends the 1987 Montreal Protocol that was designed to close growing ozone hole in by
banning ozone-depleting coolants like chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs).
 Thus, amended Montreal Protocol which was initially conceived only to plug gases that were destroying the
ozone layer now includes HFCs responsible for global warming.
 This move will help to prevent a potential 0.5 degree Celsius rise in global temperature by the end of the century.
 The Kigali Agreement or amended Montreal Protocol for HFCs reduction will be binding on countries from
2019.
 It also has provisions for penalties for non-compliance.
 Under it, developed countries will also provide enhanced funding support estimated at billions of dollars
globally. The exact amount of additional funding from developed countries will be agreed at the next Meeting of
the Parties in Montreal in 2017.

Different timelines under Kigali Amendment


 All signatory countries have been divided into three groups with different timelines to go about reductions of
HFCs.
 First group: It includes richest countries like US and those in European Union (EU). They will freeze
production and consumption of HFCs by 2018. They will reduce them to about 15% of 2012 levels by 2036.
 Second group: It includes countries like China, Brazil and all of Africa etc. They will freeze HFC use by 2024
and cut it to 20% of 2021 levels by 2045.
 Third group: It includes countries India, Pakistan, Pakistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia etc. They will be freezing HFC
use by 2028 and reducing it to about 15% of 2025 levels by 2047.

How it is different from Paris agreement?


The Paris agreement which will come into force by 2020 is not legally binding on countries to cut their emissions.
The Kigali Amendment is considered absolutely vital for reaching the Paris Agreement target of keeping global
temperature rise to below 2-degree Celsius compared to pre-industrial times.

NOTE: HFCs (Hydrofluorocarbons) are not Ozone Depleting Substances but still they are included in Montreal
Protocol via Kigali Agreement because they are potent global warming substances.

Kyoto Protocol *

 It is an international treaty
 Negotiated under UNFCC
 Adopted in 1997 in Kyoto, Japan
 Came into force in 2005
 Parties : 192 (Canada withdrew)
 It gave binding targets to Annex I countries
 The Kyoto Protocol implemented the objective of the UNFCCC to fight global warming by reducing greenhouse
gas concentrations
 The Protocol is based on the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities: it puts the obligation to
reduce current emissions on developed countries on the basis that they are historically responsible for the
current levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.
 The Protocol’s first commitment period started in 2008 and ended in 2012
 By 2008-2012, Annex 1 countries have to reduce their GHG emissions by an average of 5% below their 1990
levels (for many countries, such as the EU member states, this corresponds to some 15% below their expected
GHG emissions in 2008).
 A second commitment period was agreed on in 2012, known as the Doha Amendment to the protocol.
 The amendment includes new commitments for parties to the Protocol who agreed to take on commitments in a
second commitment period and a revised list of GHGs to be reported on by Parties.
 India has ratified the second commitment period of Kyoto Protocol.
 Paris agreement (2015) is not an amendment to Kyoto Protocol but a separate instrument altogether.
 Target under this protocol applies to following GHGs:
o Carbon Dioxide (CO2)
o Methane (CH4)
o Nitrous Oxide (NO2)
o Sulphur Hexafluoride (SF6)
o Two groups of gases :

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 Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs)
 Perfluorocarbons (PFCs)
 Kyoto Protocol includes "flexible mechanisms" which allow Annex 1 economies to meet their GHG targets by
purchasing GHG emission reductions from elsewhere. These can be bought either from :
o financial exchanges (International Emissions Trading Scheme) or
o from projects which reduce emissions in non-Annex 1 economies under the Clean Development
Mechanism (CDM),
o or in other Annex-1 countries under the Joint Implementation (JI)
 Only CDM Executive Board-accredited Certified Emission Reductions (CER) can be bought and sold in this
manner.

Minamata Convention on Mercury *


Minamata Convention:
 It is an international treaty
 It is an UN Treaty
 Signed in 2013
 Aims to protect human health and the environment from anthropogenic emissions and releases of mercury and
mercury compounds
 The Convention is named after the Japanese city Minamata. This naming is of symbolic importance as the city
went through devastating incident of mercury poisoning. It is expected that over the next few decades, this
international agreement will enhance the reduction of mercury pollution from the targeted activities responsible
for the major release of mercury to the immediate environment.
 It aims to control anthropogenic releases of mercury throughout its lifecycle.
 It has not come into force yet

Obligations on Parties of Convention


 Ban on new mercury mines, the phase-out of existing ones.
 Phase out and phase down of mercury use in a number of products and processes.
 Control measures on emissions to air and on releases to land and water.
 Regulation of the informal sector of artisanal and small-scale gold mining.

Significance of Convention
 It is implemented in context of sustainable development agenda with objective to protect human health and
environment from anthropogenic emissions and releases of mercury and mercury compounds.
 It addresses interim storage of mercury and its disposal once it becomes waste, sites contaminated by mercury
as well as health issues.
 It protects most vulnerable from the harmful effects of mercury. It also protects the developmental space of
developing countries. Therefore, protects interest of the poor and vulnerable groups.
 It further urges enterprises to move to mercury-free alternatives in products and non-mercury technologies in
manufacturing processes. This will drive R&D, and promote innovation.

Why in news?
 The Union Cabinet has approved proposal for ratification of Minamata Convention on Mercury and depositing
instrument of ratification enabling India to become Party of Convention.
 The approval entails ratification of convention along with flexibility for continued use of mercury-based
products and processes involving mercury compound up to 2025.

Montreal Protocol *

 Also called : Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer
 It is a protocol to Vienna Convention for the Protection of Ozone Layer
 It is an international treaty
 It aims to protect the ozone layer by phasing out the production of numerous substances that are responsible for
ozone depletion.
 Came into force in 1989
 Ratifies : 197 (Universal treaty)
 Due to its widespread adoption and implementation it has been hailed as an example of exceptional
international co-operation
 It is legally binding

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 As a result of the international agreement, the ozone hole in Antarctica is slowly recovering. Climate projections
indicate that the ozone layer will return to 1980 levels between 2050 and 2070. so, it can be termed as a
successful treaty.
 What it does?
o The treaty is structured around several groups of halogenated hydrocarbons that have been shown to play
a role in ozone depletion. All of these ozone depleting substances contain either chlorine or bromine
(substances containing only fluorine do not harm the ozone layer).
o It aims at phasing out :
 Chlorofluorocarbons
 Hydro chlorofluorocarbons
o Hydro Fluorocarbons are being considered to be included under it (HFCs do not harm Ozone but are
harmful as a Greenhouse gas.)

Nairobi Declaration

 Declaration adopted in 1982 ( 10th anniversary of Stockholm)


 The Declaration envisaged the creation of a special commission to frame long term environment strategies for
achieving sustainable developments upto the year 2000 and beyond.
 The Declaration was endorsed by the governing Council of United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in
1987.

New Urban Agenda - Habitat III


 The New Urban Agenda was officially adopted at the UN Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban
Development (referred as “Habitat III”) held recently in Quito, Ecuador.
 The UN's Habitat conferences are held every 20 year, with previous editions being held in Vancouver (1976) and
Istanbul (1996).

What is New Urban Agenda?


 It is a set of 175 commitments that countries need to adhere to tackle the staggering challenges of urbanization.
 It sets the global vision of sustainable urbanization for the next 20 years.
 It is a roadmap for building cities that can serve as engines of prosperity and centres of cultural and social well-
being while protecting the environment.
 It also provides guidance for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and provides the underpinning for
actions to address climate change

Paris Agreement
 It is an agreement under UNFCC
 It deals with greenhouse gases emissions mitigation, adaptation and finance starting in the year 2020.
 Opened for signature on 22 April 2016 (Earth Day)
 It has not entered into force yet.
 Aims:
o Holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 °C above pre-industrial levels and
to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels, recognizing that
this would significantly reduce the risks and impacts of climate change;
o Increasing the ability to adapt to the adverse impacts of climate change and foster climate resilience and
low greenhouse gas emissions development, in a manner that does not threaten food production;
o Making finance flows consistent with a pathway towards low greenhouse gas emissions and climate-
resilient development
 The contribution that each individual country should make in order to achieve the worldwide goal are
determined by all countries individually and called "nationally determined contributions" (NDCs)
 These targets will not be binding as it is not possible to enforce them.
 NDCs will be revised after 5 years in 2023
 When will it enter into force?
o It will enter into force (and thus become fully effective) only if 55 countries that produce at least 55% of
the world's greenhouse gas emissions (according to a list produced in 2015) ratify, accept, approve or
accede to the agreement
 India has signed it. India's contribution in global greenhouse gas is 4.10% in 2105.
 India’s proposed targets:

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1. Reduce emissions intensity of its GDP by 33 to 35% by 2030 from 2005 level.
2. Achieve about 40% electric power installed capacity from non-fossil fuel based energy resources by 2030
with help of transfer of technology and low cost international finance.
3. Create an additional carbon sink of 2.5 to 3 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent through additional forest and
tree cover by 2030.

Ramsar Convention *

 It is an international treaty
 It aims conservation and sustainable utilization of wetlands
 The convention provides the framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation
and wise use of wetlands and their resources.
 It was signed in Ramsar, Iran, in 1971
 India is one of the 169 signatories to the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands
 There are 2,241 Ramsar sites across the world
 In India 26 sites are Ramsar site, which are spread across India from Wular Lake in Jammu and Kashmir to
Ashtamudi Wetland in Kerala, and from Deepor Beel in Assam to Nal Sarovar in Gujarat.
 The Ramsar Convention is the only global environmental treaty that deals with a particular ecosystem
 The Convention uses a broad definition of the types of wetlands covered
in its mission, including lakes and rivers, swamps and marshes, wet grasslands and peat lands, oases, estuaries,
deltas and tidal flats, near-shore marine areas, mangroves and coral reefs, and human-made sites such as fish
ponds, rice paddies, reservoirs, and salt pans.
 Montreux Record:
o Montreux Record under the Convention is a register of wetland sites
o It is a list of Wetlands of International Importance where changes in ecological character have occurred,
are occurring, or are likely to occur as a result of technological developments, pollution or other human
interference.
o It is maintained as part of the Ramsar List.
o The Montreux Record was established by Recommendation of the Conference of the Contracting Parties
(1990).
o Sites may be added to and removed from the Record only with the approval of the Contracting Parties in
which they lie.

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Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD)


 It is a mechanism
 It is under negotiation under UNFCC since 2005
 Its objective is to mitigate climate change through reducing net emissions of greenhouse gases through
enhanced forest management in developing countries.
 In the last two decades, various studies estimate that land use change, including deforestation and forest
degradation, accounts for 12-29% of global greenhouse gas emissions.
 For this reason the inclusion of reducing emissions from land use change is considered essential to achieve the
objectives of the UNFCCC
 During the negotiations for the Kyoto Protocol the inclusion of tropical forest management was debated but
eventually dropped due to anticipated methodological difficulties in establishing – in particular –
additionality and leakage (detrimental effects outside of the project area attributable to project activities)
 India did not participated in UN-REDD
 REDDD+ (Defined in Bali Action Plan, 2007, CoP13)
o What constitutes "+"
 sustainable management of forests,
 conservation of forest carbon stocks and
 enhancement of forest carbon stocks
 What is the difference between REDD and REDD+?
o REDD = "reducing emissions from deforestation in developing countries"
o REDD+ (or REDD-plus) = to "reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in
developing countries, and the role of conservation, sustainable management of forests, and
enhancement of forest carbon stocks in developing countries"
 REDD+ is essentially a vehicle to financially reward developing countries for their verified efforts to reduce
emissions and enhance removals of greenhouse gases through a variety of forest management option
 India favours REDD+

Rio Declaration

 It is the declaration made after United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, 1992 (Rio de
Janeiro Summit, 1992)
 It reaffirms the Declaration of the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment, adopted at
Stockholm on 16 June 1972, and seeks to build upon it.
 It has a goal of establishing a new and equitable global partnership through the creation of new levels of
cooperation among States, key sectors of societies and people.
 It recognises the integral and interdependent nature of the Earth
 It had 27 principles.

Rotterdam Convention

 Formally called : Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous
Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade
 It is a multilateral Treaty
 It is a UN Treaty
 Opened for signature in 1998
 Became effective in 2004
 Signatories : 72
 Parties : 155
 Aims to promote shared responsibilities in relation to importation of hazardous chemicals.
 What it does?
o The convention promotes open exchange of information between importers-exporters of hazardous
chemicals.
o Calls on exporters of hazardous chemicals to use proper labelling, include directions on safe handling, and
inform purchasers of any known restrictions or bans.
o Signatory nations can decide whether to allow or ban the importation of chemicals listed in the treaty
o Exporting countries are obliged to make sure that producers within their jurisdiction comply.
 Convention has a list of substances which can change and evolve over time

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Stockholm 1972
 Conference : United Nations Conference on the Human Environment
 It was first declaration of international protection of the environment
 Held in Stockholm, Sweden from June 5–16 in 1972.
 The meeting agreed upon a Declaration containing 26 principles concerning the environment and
development;
 One of the seminal issue that emerged from the conference is the recognition for poverty alleviation for
protecting the environment.
 Indira Gandhi attended it
 The conference let to increased interest and research collaboration which paved the way for further
understanding of global warming, which has led to such agreements as the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris
Agreement, and has given a foundation of modern environmentalism.
 The United Nations Environment Programme has been established by the United Nations General Assembly in
pursuance of the Stockholm Conference.

Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants


 It is an International Environmental Treaty
 It is a UN Treaty
 Open for signature in 2001 in Stockholm
 Became effective in 2004
 It aims to eliminate or restrict the production and use of persistent organic pollutants
 Signatories : 152
 Parties : 180
 India is a party to this treaty
 US is not a party to this treaty
 Why regulate POPs?
o POPs are chemical substances that:
 Persist in the environment
 Bio-accumulate through the food web
 Pose a risk of causing adverse effects to human health and the environment
 Intergovernmental Forum on Chemical Safety (IFCS) and the International Programme for Chemical Safety
(IPCS) prepared a list, known as the Dirty Dozen :
o Eight organochlorine pesticides: aldrin, chlordane, DDT, dieldrin, endrin, heptachlor, mirex and
toxaphene;
o Two industrial chemicals: hexachlorobenzene (HCB) and the polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) group; and
o Two groups of industrial by-products: dioxins and furans.
 POPs can be reviewed and added to the convention, if they meet certain criteria for persistence and
transboundary threat i.e. list of POPs can change and evolve over time.
 There is provision that developed countries provide new and additional financial resources and measures to
minimise/regulate POPs to developing nations.

United Nations Conference on Environment and Development


 It is also called Rio de Janeiro Earth Summit , Rio Summit, Rio Conference, and Earth Summit
 Held in 1992 in Rio de Janeiro
 Rio+20 also held in Rio de Janeiro in 2012
 Summit resulted in following documents :
o Agenda 21
o Rio Declaration on Environment and Development
o Forest Principles
 Following legally binding agreements were opened for signature in this summit:
o Convention on Biological Diversity
o Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC)
o UN Convention to Combat Desertification

UNFCC
 United Nation Framework Convention on Climate Change

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 It is an international environment treaty


 Opened for signature in 1992
 Came into force from 1994
 Secretariat is located in Bonn, Germany
 Signatories : 165
 Ratifies : 197
 The convention is legally non-binding, but makes provisions for meeting called ‘protocols’ where negotiating
countries can set legally binding limits
 What it does?
o It aims to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent
dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system
o The framework set no binding limits on greenhouse gas emissions for individual countries and contains no
enforcement mechanisms.
o Instead, the framework outlines how specific international treaties (called "protocols" or "Agreements")
may be negotiated to set binding limits on greenhouse gases. Kyoto Protocol was negotiated under this
framework.
o One of the first tasks set by the UNFCCC was for signatory nations to establish national greenhouse
inventories of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and removals, which were used to create the 1990
benchmark levels for accession of Annex I countries to the Kyoto Protocol and for the commitment of
those countries to GHG reductions. Updated inventories must be regularly submitted by Annex I
countries.
 Annex I, Annex II countries and developing countries
Parties to UNFCCC are classified as:
 Annex I countries: industrialized countries and economies in transition
 Annex I countries which have ratified the Protocol have committed to reduce their emission levels of
greenhouse gasses to targets that are mainly set below their 1990 levels.
 There are 43 Annex I countries and the European Union is also a member.
 Annex II countries: developed countries which pay for costs of developing countries
 Annex II countries are a sub-group of the Annex I countries. They comprise the OECD members,
excluding those that were economies in transition in 1992.
 There are 24 Annex II countries and the European Union. Turkey was removed from the Annex II list
in 2001 at its request to recognize its economy as a transition economy.
 Non Annex I countries: Developing countries.
 Developing countries are not required to reduce emission levels unless developed countries supply
enough funding and technology. Setting no immediate restrictions under UNFCCC serves three
purposes:
 it avoids restrictions on their development, because emissions are strongly linked to
industrial capacity
 they can sell emissions credits to nations whose operators have difficulty meeting their
emissions targets
 they get money and technologies for low-carbon investments from Annex II countries.
 Developing countries may volunteer to become Annex I countries when they are sufficiently
developed.
 India is Non Annex party to UNFCC

Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer *

 Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer


 It is multilateral environment agreement
 Opened for signature in 1985
 Entered into force in 1988
 Ratifiers : 197 (Universal)
 It acts as a framework for the international efforts to protect the ozone layer. However, it does not include legally
binding reduction goals for the use of CFCs, the main chemical agents causing ozone depletion. These are laid
out in the accompanying Montreal Protocol.

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Environmental Organizations

Adaptation Fund under Kyoto Protocol

 Adaptation Fund was setup in 2001 under the Kyoto Protocol of the UNFCCC.
 The fund is used to finance projects that help countries more prone to the harmful effects of climate change
adapt to it.
 The fund is managed by Adaptation Fund Board which consists of 16 members and 16 alternates. The board
meets twice a year

Alliance of Small Island States

 It is an intergovernmental organisation of low lying coastal and small island nations.


 Established in 1990
 Purpose of the alliance is to consolidate the voices of Small Island Developing States (SIDS) to address global
warming
 As the existence of many AOSIS states are put at risk by climate change AOSIS has threatened lawsuits
 AOSIS has a membership of 44 states
 India is not a member
 In Indian ocean 4 states are member :
a. Comoros
b. Maldives
c. Mauritius
d. Seychelles

Birdlife International *
 It is a global partnership of conservation organisations that strives to conserve birds, their habitats and
global biodiversity, working with people towards sustainability in the use of natural resources
 It is world’s largest conservation partnerships for conservation of birds and their habitats.
 It was earlier known as International Committee for Bird Preservation.

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 Its global office is in UK with 6 regional offices - Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe and Central Asia, the Middle
East and the Pacific.
 It publishes a quarterly magazine, World Birdwatch, which contains recent news and authoritative articles
about birds, their habitats, and their conservation around the world.
 It is the official Red List authority for birds, for the International Union for Conservation of Nature.
 It also published important bird areas (IBA) inventory.

Centre for Science and Environment


 Non-Profit organisation
 Based in New Delhi
 Established in 1980
 CSE works as a think tank on environment-development issues in India

Global Environment Facility (GEF) *

 It is an independently operating financial organization


 It was setup as a fund under World Bank in 1991
 In 1992, at the Rio Earth Summit, the GEF was restructured and moved out of the World Bank system to
become a permanent, separate institution.
 Since 1994, however, the World Bank has served as the Trustee of the GEF Trust Fund and provided
administrative services.
 Support actions to combat major environmental issues such as climate change, loss of biodiversity, polluted
international waters, land degradation and desertification, and persistent organic pollutants, as well as stimulate
green growth.
 The program supports an active portfolio of over 200 investments globally.
 GEF serves as financial mechanism for :
o Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)
 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)
 UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD)
 Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs)
 Minamata Convention on Mercury

Green Climate Fund *

 It is a fund within the framework of UNFCCC


 It is founded to assist developing countries in adaptation and mitigation practices to counter climate change.
 Formed in 2010
 First mention of concept in Copenhagen Accord in CoP-15
 Formally in CoP-16 at Cancun.
 WB is chosen as a temporary trustee of the fund.
 HQ : Incheon, South Korea
 It is intended to be the centrepiece of efforts to raise Climate Finance of $100 billion a year by 2020. This is not
an official figure for the size of the Fund itself, however.
 No clarity about from where money will come in this fund.

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

 This is an intergovernmental body under the UN


 It is a scientific body
 Formed in 1988 by WMO (World Meteorological Organisation) and UNEP
 It produces report based on scientific developments across the world.
 The IPCC does not carry out its own original research, nor does it do the work of monitoring climate or related
phenomena itself. The IPCC bases its assessment on the published literature
 IPCC has so far produced five assessment reports, the latest one was published in 2014. It said that India's high
vulnerability and exposure to climate change will slow its economic growth, impact health and development,
make poverty reduction more difficult and erode food security
 It was awarded the Nobel peace prize in 2007
 IPCC functions under UNFCC
 The aims of the IPCC are to assess scientific information relevant to :
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1. Human-induced climate change,


2. The impacts of human-induced climate change,
3. Options for adaptation and mitigation.

Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services

 It is an independent intergovernmental body


 It was established in Panama City in 2012
 It was established to strengthen the science-policy interface for biodiversity and ecosystem services for the
conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity, long-term human well-being and sustainable development
 HQ : Bonn, Germany
 The IPBES provides a mechanism recognized by both the scientific and policy communities to synthesize,
review, assess and critically evaluate relevant information and knowledge generated worldwide

International Tropical Timber Organisation

 It is an intergovernmental organisation that promotes conservation of tropical forest resources and their
sustainable management, use and trade
 Founded in 1985
 HQ : Yokohama, Japan

International Whaling Commission

 It is an international body set up by the terms of the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling
(Signed in Washington, 1946)
 Aims to provide for the proper conservation of whale stocks and thus make possible the orderly development of
the whaling industry
 In 1982 the IWC adopted a moratorium on commercial whaling.
 Japan, Russia etc. oppose this moratorium
 The IWC allows non-zero whaling quotas for aborginal subsistence and also member nations may issue
'Scientific Permits' to their citizens.
 What it does?
o designate specified areas as whale sanctuaries;
o set limits on the numbers and size of whales which may be taken;
o prescribe open and closed seasons and areas for whaling; and
o prohibit the capture of suckling calves and female whales accompanied by calves.

International Solar Alliance *

 The ISA was launched at the 2015 Paris Climate Change Summit by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and
French President Francois Hollande.
 It seeks to empower solar-rich countries located between the tropic of Cancer and the tropic of Capricorn to
make collaborative efforts to harness solar energy to generate the electricity.
 Under this alliance, 121 countries that fall within the tropics have been invited. Most of these countries fall
within Asia, Africa and South America.
 The ISA Framework Agreement entered into force in December 2017 making ISA treaty based International
Intergovernmental Organization with
headquarters at Gurugram, India.
 As of now the ISA Framework Agreement has been signed by 48 countries.
 Three Objectives:
o To force down prices by driving demand,
o To bring standardization in solar technologies and
o To foster research and development.
 Its major objectives include global deployment of over 1,000GW of solar generation capacity and mobilisation of
investment of over US $1000 billion into solar energy by 2030.
 India and France have launched a programme with $1 trillion Potential Solar Programme under the
International Solar Alliance (ISA). It is a solar finance programme that aims at helping developing countries to
fully harness their solar resources for a clean energy future. The solar finance programme aims at lowering the
cost of finance and facilitates the flow of more than 1 trillion dollars investment to members of the ISA.

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International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)


 Its full legal name is International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources.
 It is an international organisation working in the field of nature conservation and sustainable use of natural
resources
 Founded in 1948 in Fontainebleau, France.
 HQ : Gland, Switzerland
 It is involved in data gathering and analysis, research, field projects, advocacy, lobbying and education.
 Over the past decades, IUCN has widened its focus beyond conservation ecology and now incorporates issues
related to gender equality, poverty alleviation and sustainable business in its projects.
 It publishes IUCN Red List which assesses the conservation status of species worldwide
 IUCN has observer and consultative status at the United Nations
 Both Governments and NGOs are its members.

National Adaptation Fund for Climate Change


 NAFCC was operationalized in 2015-16.
 The fund is meant to assist national and state level activities to meet the cost of adaptation measures in areas
that are particularly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change.
 This scheme has been taken as Central Sector Scheme with the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural
Development (NABARD) as National Implementing Entity (NIE).
 The overall aim of the fund is to support concrete adaptation activities which are not covered under ongoing
schemes of State and National Government that reduce the adverse affects of climate change facing community
sector and states.

SAWEN
SAWEN - South Asia Wildlife Enforcement Network
 India has decided to become a member of SAWEN
 SAWEN is regional inter-governmental wildlife law enforcement support body launched in January, 2011 in
Paro, Bhutan
 It aims at working collectively as a strong regional inter-governmental body to combat wildlife crime by
attainting common mutual goals and approaches for combating illegal trade in the region.
 SAWEN’s regional network comprises of eight South Asia countries: Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, Nepal,
Bhutan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Maldives
 India's motive: By becoming member of SAWEN, India will strengthen its ties with the member countries for
controlling the trans-boundary wildlife crimes through coordination, communication, collaboration,
cooperation and capacity building in the region.
 Context: South Asian region is very vulnerable to wildlife crimes and illegal traffic due to presence of precious
biodiversity. It is mainly due to presence of large markets as well as traffic routes for wildlife products in the
region. SAWEN was established for mutual collaboration for harmonising as well as enforcing the wildlife
protection in the region for effective conservation of such precious biodiversity.

United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)

 It is an UN agency
 It coordinates UN's environmental activities, assisting developing countries in implementing environmentally
sound policies and practices.
 It was founded as a result of the UN Conference on the Human Environment (Stockholm Conference) in 1972
 HQ : Nairobi, Kenya
 Its activities cover a wide range of issues regarding the atmosphere, marine and terrestrial ecosystems,
environmental governance and green economy.
 UNEP has also been active in funding and implementing environment related development projects
 UNEP has aided in the formulation of guidelines and treaties on issues such as the international trade in
potentially harmful chemicals, transboundary air pollution, and contamination of international waterways
 UNEP is also one of several Implementing Agencies for the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and the
Multilateral Fund for the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol
 The International Cyanide Management Code, a program of best practice for the chemical’s use at gold mining
operations, was developed under UNEP’s aegis.

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World Meteorological Organisation


 It is an intergovernmental organisation
 191 members
 Established in 1950
 WMO is the specialised agency of the UN for meteorology (weather and climate), operational hydrology and
related geophysical sciences
 HQ : Geneva, Switzerland
 India is a member of WMO
 Its mandate covers weather, climate and water resources.

World Nature Organisation


 It is an intergovernmental organisation which promotes global environmental protection
 Formed in 2010 (Established in 2014)
 The organization is focused on promoting activities, technologies, economies, and renewable energies which are
regarded to be environment friendly; and reducing the impact of climate change
 The organization was established by the intergovernmental WNO-Treaty, which enters into force on May 1, 2014
 Location : Geneva
 India is not a member

National Environmental Framework

Animal Welfare Board of India

 It is a statutory body
 It is an advisory body advising the Government of India on animal welfare laws, and promotes animal welfare in
the country of India.
 The Animal Welfare Board of India was established in 1960 under Section 4 of The Prevention of Cruelty to
Animals Act,1960.
 The Board consists of 28 Members, who serve for a period of 3 years.
 It works to ensure that animal welfare laws in the country are followed and provides grants to Animal Welfare
Organisations.
 The Board was initially within the jurisdiction of the Government of India’s Ministry of Food and Agriculture. In
1990, the subject of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was transferred to the Ministry of Environment and
Forests, where it now resides.
 It frames a range of rules on how animals ought to be humanely treated everywhere. It has also frequently
litigated to have stricter laws to ensure animals were not unduly harassed or tortured.

Biological Diversity Act, 2002

 The government passed the biodiversity act to conserve and promote sustainable use of biological diversity and
to regulate the access to biological resources of the country with equitable share in benefits.
 It sets up National Biodiversity Authority (NBA), State Biodiversity Board (SBB) and Biodiversity Management
Committees.
 Besides, it aims to respect and protect knowledge of local communities traditional knowledge related to
biodiversity and secure sharing of benefits with local people as conservers of biological resources and holders of
knowledge and information relating to the use of biological resources.
 Besides, it also has provisions for notifying heritage sites by State Government in consultation with local body.

CAMPA
What is Compensatory Afforestation?
Compensatory afforestation means afforestation done in lieu of diversion of forest land for non-forest use.

What does CAF Bill seek?


The Compensatory Afforestation Fund Bill seeks to govern how forests will be raised, cut and resurrected across India.

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Background ( Why we need a legislation?)


 The Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980 (FCA) governs diversion or use of forest land for non-forest purposes such
as industrial or infrastructure projects.
 A company diverting forest land must provide alternative land for taking up compensatory afforestation.
 For the afforestation purpose, the company should pay for planting new trees in the alternative land provided to
the state. The loss of forest ecosystem must also be compensated by paying for (NPV).
 In 2002, the Supreme Court of India observed that collected funds for afforestation were underutilised by the
states and it ordered for centrally pooling of funds under ad hoc Compensatory Afforestation Fund.
 The court had set up the ad hoc National Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning
Authority (National CAMPA) to manage the Fund.
 In 2009, states also had set up State CAMPAs that receive 10% of funds form National CAMPA to use for
afforestation and forest conservation.
 However, in 2013, a CAG report identified that the funds continued to be underutilised.

In the absence of permanent institutional mechanism more than Rs.40,000 crores have accumulated with the said ad-
hoc Body i.e. CAMPA. Hence the Bill.

What are the salient features of the passed bill ?


 It seeks to establish the National Compensatory Afforestation Fund under the Public Account of India, and a
State Compensatory Afforestation Fund under the Public Account of each state.
 The payments into the funds include compensatory afforestation, net present value of forest (NPV), and any
project specific payments.
 The National Fund will get 10% of funds collected and the remaining 90% will go to respective State Fund.
 The collected funds will be utilised for afforestation, regeneration of forest ecosystem, wild life protection and
forest related infrastructure development.
 The bill also seeks to establish National and State Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning
Authorities to manage the funds.
 The determination of NPV will be delegated to an expert committee constituted by the central government.
 The Bill also provides for constitution of an authority at national level and at each of the State and Union
territory Administration for administration of the funds and to utilise the monies so collected for
o undertaking artificial regeneration (plantations),
o assisted natural regeneration,
o protection of forests,
o forest related infrastructure development,
o Green India Programme,
o wildlife protection and other related activities and
o for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto

What is the significance of passed bill?


 The legislation will ensure expeditious utilization of accumulated unspent amounts available with the ad hoc
CAMPA, which presently is of the order of Rs.40,000 crore, and
 Fresh accrual of compensatory levies and interest on accumulated unspent balance, which will be of the order of
approx. Rs. 6,000 crore per annum, in an efficient and transparent manner

Crocodile Conservation Project


 The Indian Crocodile Conservation Project is one of the most successful conservation initiatives in the world.
 It has pulled back the once threatened crocodilians from the brink of extinction and placed them on a good path
of recovery.
 The broad objectives of activities under crocodile project were
o to protect the remaining population of crocodilians in their natural habitat by creating sanctuaries;
o to rebuild natural population quickly through `grow and release' or `rear and release' technique
o to promote captive breeding;
o to take-up research to improve management; and
o to involve the local people in the project intimately.

Related info:
 Gharial is listed as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List

Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ)

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 CRZ is the zone along the coastal stretches of seas, bays, estuaries, creeks, rivers and backwaters along the
coastline specially demarcated for regulated development activity.
 The demarcated zone consists of coastal stretches influenced by tidal action (in the landward side) up to 500
metres from the High Tide Line (HTL) and the land between the Low Tide Line (LTL) and the HTL.
 The regulations in this zone are governed by the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ), 2011 issued under the under
Section 3 of the Environment Protection Act, 1986.
 In this zone, Government imposes restrictions on setting up and expansion of industries or other projects.
 It is mandatory for getting clearances from ministry and local authorities to start any development project in
CRZ.

Environment Protection Act, 1986

 Aims to provide for the protection and improvement of environment


 It describes rules to regulate environmental pollution, laying down procedures and standards for industrial
waste, emissions, hazardous waste etc.
 Besides, it deals with the prevention, control and abatement of environmental pollution.

Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM)


 ICZM aims to improve livelihood of coastal communities and conserve the coastal ecosystem.
 The ICZM plan involves identification of infrastructure requirements and livelihood improvement means in
coastal districts. Conservation of mangroves is among the components.
 The national component of the project includes mapping of the country’s coastline and demarcation of the
hazard line.
 It is a World Bank assisted project.
 It is being implemented by the Department of Forests and Environment with assistance from the Union
Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC).
 The National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Management (NCSCM), Chennai, will provide scientific and
technical inputs.

Indian Forest Act, 1927

 This Act recognizes forest dwellers' rights and makes conservation more accountable.
 The Act basically does two things:
a. Grants legal recognition to the rights of traditional forest dwelling communities, partially correcting the
injustice caused by the forest laws, and
b. Makes a beginning towards giving communities and the public a voice in forest and wildlife conservation.
 The law recognises three types of rights:
a. Land Rights: Land rights are given to people, who have been cultivating land prior to December, 13,
2005.
b. Use Rights: The law provides for rights to use and/or collect the minor forest produce things like tendu
patta, herbs, medicinal plants etc “that has been traditionally collected, use of grazing grounds and water
bodies and use of traditional areas by nomadic or pastoralist communities i.e. communities that move
with their herds, as opposed to practicing settled agriculture.
c. Right to Protect and Conserve: The law gives rights to protect and manage the forests to people of
village communities.
 The Act also categorises forests into three categories:
a. Reserve forest: These forests are the most restricted forests and may be constituted by the State
Government on any forest land or waste land which is the property of the Government or on which the
Government has proprietary rights. In reserved forests, most uses by local people are prohibited, unless
specifically allowed by a Forest Officer in the course of settlement.
b. Protected forest: The State Government is empowered to constitute any land other than reserved
forests as protected forests over which the Government has proprietary rights. Under ‘Protected Forests’,
the Government retains the power to issue rules regarding the use of such forests and retains the power to
reserve the specific tree species in the protected forests. This power has been used to establish State
control over trees, whose timber, fruit or other non-wood products have revenue-raising potential.
c. Village forest: ‘Village forests’ are the one in which the State Government may assign to ‘any village
community the rights of Government to or over any land which has been constituted a reserved forest’.

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MIKE
 MIKE stands for Monitoring of Illegal Killing of Elephants
 Comes under CITES
 It was started in South Asia in 2003 with the following objective:
o To measure levels and trends in illegal hunting of elephants.
o To determine changes in these trends overtime.
o To determine the factors causing or associated with these changes and to try and assess in particular to
what extent observed trends are a result of any decisions taken by the Conference of the Parties to CITES.
 In India, Project Elephant has been formally implementing MIKE
 Data are collected from all sites on monthly basis in specified MIKE patrol form and submitted to Sub-Regional
Support Office for South Asia Programme in Delhi who are assisting Ministry in implementation of the
programme

National Action Plan on Climate Change


 Released in 2008
 Outlines existing and future policies and programs addressing climate mitigation and adaptation.
 The plan identifies eight core “national missions” running through 2017.
 Emphasizing the overriding priority of maintaining high economic growth rates to raise living standards, the
plan “identifies measures that promote our development objectives while also yielding co-benefits for addressing
climate change effectively.”
 8 National Missions
a. National Solar Mission:
 The NAPCC aims to promote the development and use of solar energy for power generation and
other uses with the ultimate objective of making solar competitive with fossil-based energy options.
The plan includes:
 Specific goals for increasing use of solar thermal technologies in urban areas, industry, and
commercial establishments;
 A goal of increasing production of photovoltaic to 1000 MW/year; and
 A goal of deploying at least 1000 MW of solar thermal power generation.
 Other objectives include the establishment of a solar research centre, increased international
collaboration on technology development, strengthening of domestic manufacturing capacity, and
increased government funding and international support.
b. National Mission for Enhanced Energy Efficiency:
 Initiatives based on increasing the energy use efficiency were expected to yield savings of 10,000
MW by 2012.
 Building on the Energy Conservation Act 2001, the plan recommends:
 Mandating specific energy consumption decreases in large energy-consuming industries, with
a system for companies to trade energy-savings certificates;
 Energy incentives, including reduced taxes on energy-efficient appliances; and
 Financing for public-private partnerships to reduce energy consumption through demand-
side management programs in the municipal, buildings and agricultural sectors.
c. National Mission on Sustainable Habitat:
 To promote energy efficiency as a core component of urban planning, the plan calls for:
 Extending the existing Energy Conservation Building Code;
 A greater emphasis on urban waste management and recycling, including power production
from waste;
 Strengthening the enforcement of automotive fuel economy standards and using pricing
measures to encourage the purchase of efficient vehicles; and
 Incentives for the use of public transportation.
d. National Water Mission:
 With water scarcity projected to worsen as a result of climate change, the plan sets a goal of a 20%
improvement in water use efficiency through pricing and other measures.
e. National Mission for Sustaining the Himalayan Ecosystem:
 The plan aims to conserve biodiversity, forest cover, and other ecological values in the Himalayan
region, where glaciers that are a major source of India’s water supply are projected to recede as a
result of global warming.
f. National Mission for a “Green India”:
 Goals include the afforestation of 6 million hectares of degraded forest lands and expanding forest
cover from 23% to 33% of India’s territory.
g. National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture:
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 The plan aims to support climate adaptation in agriculture through the development of climate-
resilient crops, expansion of weather insurance mechanisms, and agricultural practices.
h. National Mission on Strategic Knowledge for Climate Change:
 To gain a better understanding of climate science, impacts and challenges, the plan envisions a new
Climate Science Research Fund, improved climate modelling, and increased international
collaboration.
 It also encourages private sector initiatives to develop adaptation and mitigation technologies
through venture capital funds.

National Air Quality Index *

 This index is launched under Swacch Bharat Abhiyan in 2014


 Aim is ‘one number- one colour-one description’ for
the common man to judge the air quality within his vicinity
 Air quality is declared in 6 categories
 Index considers eight pollutants i.e. PM10, PM2.5,
NO2, SO2, CO, O3, NH3, and Pb for which short-term (up to
24-hourly averaging period) National Ambient Air Quality
Standards are prescribed

National Green Corps Program


 National Green Corps is a major initiative of MoEF for creating environmental awareness.
 It was launched in 2001-02 and aims at building cadres of young children working towards environmental
conservation and sustainable development.
 It is operated through Eco-clubs which are set up in schools and registered as members of NGC.
 This programme exposes school children to in-depth field experiences, and provides opportunities to convert
their ideas into creative action.
 The programme has a cascading effect as it seeks to redirect the consciousness of students towards environment
friendly attitudes and actions and goes beyond schools, promoting school-society interactions to sensitize the
society

National Institute of Animal Welfare


 It is a subordinate office under MoEF.
 It is one of its kind institute which provides professional education in this field.
 Its major aim is to promote awareness, disseminate information and impart education about animal welfare and
its discipline in a professional manner.
 It also aims at poverty alleviation through use of animals for generation of wealth and employment
opportunities.
 It also strives for creation of enabling environment to fulfil provisions under prevention of cruelty to animals
act, 1960.

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Project Elephant
 It is a centrally sponsored scheme
 Launched in 1992
 Objectives:
o To protect elephants, their habitat & corridors
o To address issues of man-animal conflict
o Welfare of captive elephants
 It provide financial and technical support to major elephant bearing states in the country for protection of
elephants, their habitats and corridors. It also seeks to address the issues of human-elephant conflict and
welfare of domesticated elephants.
 Main activities of the Project are as follows:
o Ecological restoration of existing natural habitats and migratory routes of elephants;
o Development of scientific and planned management for conservation of elephant habitats and viable
population of Wild Asiatic elephants in India;
o Promotion of measures for mitigation of man elephant conflict in crucial habitats and moderating
pressures of human and domestic stock activities in crucial elephant habitats;
o Strengthening of measures for protection of Wild elephants form poachers and unnatural causes of death;
o Eco-development and Veterinary care.

Project Snow Leopard *

 Snow Leopard is globally endangered species as well as the most important flagship species of the mountain
region
 Project aims to conserve biodiversity with community participation
 The project will be operational in five Himalayan States viz. Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh,
Uttarakhand, Sikkim, and Arunachal Pradesh with active support from wildlife institute of India and the Mysore
based Nature Conservation Foundation.
 The project stresses on a landscape approach to conservation wherein smaller core zones with relatively
conservation values will be identified and conserved with support and the larger landscape will be managed in
such a way that it allows necessary development benefits to the local communities.
 The project thus places greater importance to careful and knowledge-based management planning of the
landscapes.
 Species such as Snow Leopard, Asiatic Ibex, Tibetan Argali, Ladakh Urial, Chiru, Takin, Serow and Musk Deer
will particularly benefit from this project.

Snow Leopard:
 Snow leopard (Panthera uncial) is a large cat native to the mountain ranges of Central and South Asia- including
Himalayas, and Russia’s remote Altai mountains.
 Snow Leopard is upgraded to the category of ‘vulnerable’ in the recent assessment. The change in status comes
45 years after snow leopard was first declared endangered in 1972. However, experts have warned that snow
leopard species still faces serious threats from poaching and habitat destruction.
 Snow Leopard is found in 11 countries such as Afghanistan, Bhutan, China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic,
Mongolia, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. These countries formed the Global Snow Leopard
Forum (GSLF) and signed the Bishkek Declaration to acknowledge its importance as the indicator of the
health and sustainability of mountain ecosystems.
 It is the State animal of Himachal Pradesh.

Project Tiger

 Aims at conserving India's national animal i.e. Tiger.


 Launched in 1973
 The tiger reserves are constituted on a core/buffer strategy.
o The core areas have the legal status of a national park or a sanctuary, whereas the buffer or peripheral
areas are a mix of forest and non-forest land, managed as a multiple use area.
o The Project Tiger aims to foster an exclusive tiger agenda in the core areas of tiger reserves, with an
inclusive people oriented agenda in the buffer.
 It is a Centrally Sponsored Scheme of the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change providing
central assistance to the tiger States for tiger conservation in designated tiger reserves.
 The National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) is a statutory body of the Ministry, with an overarching
supervisory / coordination role, performing functions as provided in the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.
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 Wild tigers are found in 18 States in India


 The All India tiger estimation is carried out once in every four years.

Why save Tigers?


 Tigers are terminal consumers in the ecological food pyramid, and their conservation results in the conservation
of all trophic levels in an ecosystem

Challenges in Tiger conservation


 protection against poaching,
 fragmentation of habitat,
 securing inviolate space for tiger to facilitate its social dynamics,
 addressing tiger-human interface,
 restoration of corridors and eliciting public support of local people by providing ecologically sustainable options.

Related info:
 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tiger_reserves_of_India . Please go through the list once. Try to see all places in
maps (most have wiki pages). Focus on mountains, rivers, state boundaries etc. UPSC asks map based questions
from this area. (Atleast cover major one's and last 5 added in the list)

Rhino Conservation
 The greater one-horned rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis) is listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List of
Threatened Species.
 Rhinoceros unicornis has been listed in CITES Appendix I since 1975
 Close to 85% of the total population occurs in India, with about 75% in the state of Assam.
 Indian Rhino Vision (IRV) 2020 is a partnership between:
o the Assam Forest Department,
o the Bodoland Territorial Council,
o the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF),
o the International Rhino Foundation (IRF), and
o the US Fish and Wildlife Service.
 The goal is to attain a wild population of at least 3,000 greater one-horned rhinos in the Indian state of Assam
by the year 2020.
 The Indian and Nepalese governments have taken major steps towards Indian rhinoceros conservation,
especially with the help of the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and other non-governmental organizations

Facts on threats:
 The extent and quality of the rhino’s most important habitat, alluvial grassland and riverine forest, is considered
to be in decline due to human and livestock encroachment
 The Indian rhinoceros once ranged throughout the entire stretch of the Indo-Gangetic Plain, but excessive
hunting and agricultural development reduced their range drastically to 11 sites in northern India and southern
Nepal
 As a result of habitat destruction and climatic changes their range has gradually been reduced so that by the 19th
century, they only survived in the Terai grasslands of southern Nepal, northern Uttar Pradesh, northern Bihar,
northern Bengal, and in the Brahmaputra Valley of Assam

Controversy:
 Government is trying to revoke visa of a BBC correspondent who has made a documentary showing that Forest
guards have killed more poachers than poachers have killed Rhinos.

Vulture Conservation
 India has nine species of vultures in the wild.
 These are :
o Oriental White-backed Vulture (Gypsbengalensis),
o Slender billed Vulture (Gyps tenuirostris),
o Long billed Vulture (Gyps indicus),
o Egyptian Vulture (Neophron percnopterus),
o Red Headed Vulture (Sarcogyps calvus),
o Indian Griffon Vulture (Gyps fulvus),
o Himalayan Griffon (Gyps himalayensis),

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o Cinereous Vulture (Aegypius monachus) and


o Bearded Vulture or Lammergeier (Gypaetus barbatus).
 The population of three species i.e.
o White-backed Vulture,
o Slender billed Vulture and
o Long billed Vulture in the wild has declined drastically over the past decade.
 Because of the evidence of widespread and rapid population decline, all three vulture species were listed by
IUCN in 2000 as ‘Critically Endangered’.
 Experiments showed that captive vultures are highly susceptible to Diclofenac, and are killed by kidney failure
leading to gout within a short time of feeding on the carcass of an animal treated with the normal veterinary
dose.
 There have been major initiatives for complete ban on the use of Diclofenac and finding a suitable substitute
for the same.
 The Supreme Court has also given instructions for phasing out of Diclofenac.

Wildlife Protection Act, 1972


Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 (with Amendment Acts of 2003 and 2006):
 The act provides for the protection of wild animals, birds and plants and matters connected with them, with
a view to ensure the ecological and environmental security of India.
 Extends to the whole of India, except the State of Jammu and Kashmir which has its own wildlife act
 It provides for prohibition on use of animal traps except under certain circumstances
 It provides for protection of hunting rights of the Scheduled Tribes in Andaman and Nicobar Islands
 Has provisions for the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora
(CITES)
 It has six schedules which give varying degrees of protection
o Species listed in Schedule I and part II of Schedule II get absolute protection — offences under these are
prescribed the highest penalties
o Species listed in Schedule III and Schedule IV are also protected, but the penalties are much lower
o Schedule V includes the animals which may be hunted
o The plants in Schedule VI are prohibited from cultivation and planting
 The act constitutes a National Board for Wildlife that
o provides guidelines for framing policies and advising Central and State Government on promotion of
wildlife conservation and controlling poaching and illegal trade of wildlife and its products;
o Making recommendations for setting up and managing national parks, sanctuaries and other protected
areas; and
o Suggesting measures for improvement of wildlife conservation.
 It also sets up National Tiger Conservation Authority.
 The acts sets up various provisions related to trade and penalties for hunting the animals in wild.
 Five kinds of protected areas can be notified in the Act. These are:
o Sanctuaries: The State or Central Government may by notification declare its intention to constitute any
area as a sanctuary for protecting wildlife and the environment. The government determines the nature
and extent of rights of persons in or over the land within the sanctuary.
o National Parks:
 The State or Central Government may declare an area, whether inside a sanctuary or not, as a
national park for the purpose of protecting and developing wildlife and its environment.
 The State Government cannot alter the boundaries of a national park except on the
recommendation of the National Board for Wildlife.
 No grazing is allowed inside a national park.
 All provisions applicable to a sanctuary are also applicable to a national park.
o Conservation Reserves: The State Government after consultations with local communities can declare
any area owned by the Government, particularly areas adjacent to national parks or sanctuaries, as
conservation reserves. The government constitutes a Conservation Reserve Management Committee to
manage and conserve the conservation reserve.
o Community Reserves: The State Government can, in consultation with the community or an individual
who have volunteered to conserve wildlife, declare any private or community land as community reserve.
A Community Reserve Management Committee shall be constituted by State Government for conserving
and managing the reserve.
o Tiger Reserve: These areas were reserved for protection tiger in the country. The State Government
on the recommendation of the Tiger Conservation Authority may notify an area as a tiger reserve, for
which it has to prepare a Tiger Conservation Plan.

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Parks and Sanctuaries (Came in news)

Banni Grassland
 It is arid grassland ecosystem in Kutch region of Gujarat.
 It is known for its wildlife and biodiversity protected under reserved forest category.
 It is believed to be the last known habitat of cheetah in India
 Why in news? PM released a book named "Birds of Banni Grassland"

Bhitarkanika National Park

 It is a national park located in Kendrapara district of Odisha


 National Park since 1998
 Ramsar Convention site since 2002
 Surrounded by the Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary.
 Gahirmatha Beach and Marine Sanctuary lies to the east
 It is home to Saltwater Crocodile (Crocodylus porosus), White Crocodile, Indian python, King Cobra, black ibis,
darters and many other species of flora and fauna.
 The sanctuary is the second largest mangrove ecosystem in India.
 The national park and wildlife sanctuary is inundated by a number of rivers - Brahmani, Baitarni, Dhamra,
Pathsala

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Buxa Tiger Reserve *

 Tiger reserve located inside the Buxa National Park


 Located in Northern West Bengal, India
 Located in the Buxa Hills of the southern hilly area of Bhutan.
 Its northern boundary runs along the international border with Bhutan
 The fragile "Terai Eco-System" constitutes a part of this reserve.
 The Phipsu Wildlife Sanctuary of Bhutan is contiguous to the north of BTR.
 Animals found -tiger, civet, elephant, gaur (Indian bison), Indian boar and red jungle fowl
 Why in news?
o The Buxa Tiger Reserve has been identified for the tiger augmentation programme by the National Tiger
Conservation Authority (NTCA).
o The tigers from the forest reserves of Assam, which have a similar flora and fauna, will be introduced in
Buxa.

Gahirmatha Marine Sanctuary

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 Gahirmatha Marine Sanctuary is a marine wildlife sanctuary located in Odisha.


 It extends from Dhamra River mouth in the north to Mahanadi river mouth in the south.
 It is very famous for its nesting beach for olive ridley sea turtles.
 It is the one of world’s most important nesting beach for turtles.

Idukky Wildlife Sanctuary

 Located in Western Ghats in Kerala


 The Forest type:
o West Coast Tropical Evergreen forests,
o Semi Evergreen forests,
o Moist Deciduous Forests,
o Hill shoals and Grass Lands
 Biodiversity: Elephant, Sambar, Barking Deer, Mouse deer, Bonnet macaque, Nilgiri Langur, Malabar giant
squirrel, Great Indian Hornbill, Grey-headed Bulbul etc.

Kanha Tiger Reserve

 It is one of the tiger reserves of India and the largest national park of Madhya Pradesh.
 Present-day Kanha area is divided into two sanctuaries, Hallon and Banjar.
 Kanha National Park was created in June 1955 and was made the Kanha Tiger Reserve in 1973.
 Today it stretches over an area of 940 square km in the two districts Mandla and Balaghat.
 It the largest National Park in Central India and was ranked in the top 10 Famous Places for Tourists.
 It had inspired Rudyard Kipling for his famous novel Jungle Book.
 The park has a significant population of Bengal tiger, Indian leopards, sloth bear, barasingha and Indian wild
dog.

Karnala Bird Sanctuary

 It is in Western Ghats
 It is covered with moist mixed deciduous forest
 The sanctuary is particularly rich in climbers and as many as 11 species are recorded from KBS.
 Among mammals, three species of primates (Common Langur, Bonnet Macaque and Rhesus macaque) are
occurring in the sanctuary. Barking Deer, Wild Pig, Jackals, Hyaena, Jungle Cat, Squirrel, Porcupine and Indian
Hare are also reported from the sanctuary.
 KBS is particularly known for its rich avifauna and is home to over 146 species of resident and 37 species of
migratory birds that visit during winter.
 Rare endemic birds of Western Ghats such as Malabar grey Hornbill, Ashy Minivet, three-toed Kingfisher and
Malabar Trogon are reported from Sanctuary.
 Among other significant bird species the records of Malabar Whistling Thrush, long-billed Vulture, Indian
Scimitar Babbler and Shaheen Falcon are significant
 Why in news? NH 17 Connection Mumbai and Goa passes through it. NHAI passed a project to safeguard
the sancutary

Kaziranga National Park


 It is a national park in the Golaghat and Nagaon districts of the state of Assam, India.
 It is a World Heritage Site.
 The sanctuary hosts two-thirds of the world’s great one-horned rhinoceroses
 Tigers: Kaziranga is home to the highest density of tigers among protected areas in the world, and
was declared a Tiger Reserve in 2006
 Fauna: The park is home to large breeding populations of elephants, wild water buffalo, and swamp deer
 Important Bird Area: Kaziranga is recognized as an Important Bird Area by BirdLife International for
conservation of avifaunal species
 When compared with other protected areas in India, Kaziranga has achieved notable success in wildlife
conservation
 Located on the edge of the Eastern Himalaya biodiversity hotspot, the park combines high species
diversity and visibility

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 Flora: Kaziranga is a vast expanse of tall elephant grass,


grass, marshland, and dense tropical moist broadleaf forests,
criss-crossed
crossed by four major rivers, including the Brahmaputra, and the park includes numerous small bodies of
water
 The park celebrated its centennial in 2005 after its establishment in 1905 as a reserve
reserve forest

Khangchendzonga National Park

 Located in Sikkim (Covers its 25% area)


 Park includes a unique diversity of plains, valleys, lakes, glaciers and spectacular snow
snow-capped mountains
covered with ancient forests
 The park combines the religious and cultural practices of Buddhism as well as the ecological significance of the
region
 It houses the world's 3rd highest peak Mt Khangchendzonga
 Why in news? It is included in UNESCO's ’mixed’ heritage site category of the list i.e. it exhibits qualities of
both natural and cultural significance
 Map:

Manas National Park

 Manas National Park is a national park, UNESCO Natural World Heritage site, a Project Tiger reserve, an
elephant reserve and a biosphere reserve in Assam, India
 It is located in the Himalayan foothills,
 It is contiguous with the Royal Manas National Park in Bhutan
 The Manas river flows thorough the west of the park and is the main river within it. It is a major tributary of
Brahmaputra river
 The Manas river also serves as an international border dividing India and Bhutan
 Why in news? Tiger population increased by 50% in Manas

Nalbana Bird Sanctuary *


 Nalbana Bird Sanctuary or Nalbana Island is the core area of the Ramsar designated wetlands of Chilika Lake.
 It was declared a bird sanctuary under the Wildlife Protection Act in 1973
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 In the heart of the park, one can see thousands of birds descending during the migratory season. The island
disappears during monsoon season due to inundation only to emerge again in post-monsoon.
 Nalbana means a weed covered island In the Odia language.
 Nalbana was notified in 1987 and declared a bird sanctuary in 1973 under the Wildlife Protection Act
 In 2002, The Bombay Natural History Society survey recorded 540 nests of the Indian river tern at the island,
the largest nesting colony in the southeast Asia

Orang tiger reserve

 It is located on the north bank of the Brahmaputra River.


 It is 49th Tiger Reserve of country, notified in 2016.
 It has the smallest core of 78.28 sq. km.
 It is also known as the mini Kaziranga National Park (IUCN site) since the two parks have a similar landscape
made up of marshes, streams and grasslands.
 The park has a rich flora and fauna, including great Indian one-horned rhinoceros, pigmy hog, elephants, wild
buffalo and tigers. It is the only stronghold of rhinoceros on the north bank of the Brahmaputra river.

Periyar National Park *

 Periyar National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary (PNP) is a protected area near Thekkady in the districts of Idukki,
Kottayam and Pathanamthitta in Kerala
 It is notable as an elephant reserve and a tiger reserve.
 The park is a repository of rare, endemic and endangered flora and fauna and forms the major watershed of two
important rivers of Kerala, the Periyar and the Pamba.
 The park is often called the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary or Thekkady. It is located high in the Cardamom Hills and
Pandalam Hills of the south Western Ghats along the border with Tamil Nadu.
 The first official action towards the conservation of wildlife and biodiversity in Kerala was taken in 1934 by the
Maharaja of Travancore, Chithira Thirunal Balarama Varma, by declaring the forests around Periyar lake as a
private game reserve to stop the encroachment of tea plantations

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Ramsar Sites of India

Sahara Forest Project *

 It is project of Jordan to turn desert land into farming land to produce food using sun and sea water.
 The project seeks to demonstrate innovative application of technology to revolutionize our land systems in a way
that benefits the climate, people, and businesses.
 It is funded by Norway and European Union.
 It aims to provide fresh water, food and renewable energy in hot, arid regions as well as re-vegetating areas of
uninhabited desert.
 It combines saltwater-cooled greenhouses with solar power technologies, and technologies for desert
revegetation.

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Simlipal National park *

 Simlipal National Park is national park and a tiger reserve in Mayurbhanj district of Odisha.
 It is part of Similipal-Kuldiha-Hadgarh Elephant Reserve popularly known as Mayurbhanj Elephant Reserve.
 Simlipal National Park derives its name from the abundance of semul (red silk cotton trees) that bloom here.
 It was the second largest national park in India.
 Its reserve is part of UNESCO World Network of Biosphere Reserves since 2009.
 The park has protected area of 845.70 square kilometres and has some beautiful waterfalls like Joranda and
Barehipani.
 It is home to 99 royal Bengal tigers and 432 wild elephants.
 Besides it is famous for gaurs (Indian bison), chausingha as well as an orchidarium.

Turtle sanctuary in Allahabad *

 Sanctuary is being set up by Union Ministry of Water Resources.


 It will be set up along with River Biodiversity Park at Sangam in Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh under Namami Gange
programme.
 The approved project includes development of River Biodiversity Park at Sangam (confluence of Ganga, Yamuna
and mythical Sarasvati Rivers), establishment of Turtle Rearing Centre (Permanent nursery at Triveni Pushp
and makeshift annual hatcheries) and awareness about importance of Ganga River and imperativeness of its
conservation has been approved.

Species (Came in news)

Barasingha

 Barasingha, or swamp deer is a deer species distributed in the Indian subcontinent.


 It is the state animal of Madhya Pradesh.
 The Kanha tiger reserve, spread over Mandla and Balaghat districts (in Madhya Pradesh) is the only place in the
world where the Barasingha species exists.
 Barasingha differs from all the Indian deer species such that its antlers carry more than three tines.
 Because of this distinctive character it is designated barasingha, meaning “twelve-tined.

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 It has been listed vulnerable in the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) Red List of
Threatened Species.

Blackbuck *
 Indian Blackbuck (Antilope cervicapra) is an antelope and is the only living species of the genus Antilope.
 It is considered to be the fastest animal in the world next to Cheetah.
 The horns of the blackbuck are ringed with one to four spiral turns and the female is usually hornless.
 Habitat:
o Blackbuck inhabits grassy plains and slightly forested areas.
o Due to its regular need of water, it prefers areas where water is perennially available.
o It is found in Central- Western India (MP, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Punjab, Haryana, Maharashtra and
Odisha) and Southern India (Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, and Tamil Nadu).
 Protection Status:
o Hunting of blackbuck is prohibited under Schedule I of the Wildlife Protection Act of 1972.
o It has been categorised least concerned in IUCN Red Data Book.
 The Bishnoi community of Rajasthan is known worldwide for their conservation efforts to blackbuck and
Chinkara.

Why in news?
The Uttar Pradesh State Cabinet has approved Blackbuck Conservation Reserve in trans-Yamuna belt near
Allahabad. It will be first of its kind conservation reserves in India exclusively dedicated to blackbuck.

Blank-necked Crane

 Vulnerable black-necked crane is found in Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh


 NGT halts hydro power project on Nyamjang Chhu river in Tawang to save them
 Black-necked crane is a species that breeds on the Tibetan plateau and migrates to Tawang for the winter
 It is rated as ‘vulnerable’ in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) list of endangered
species
 It is also listed in India’s Wildlife Act as a Schedule 1 species, which gives animals and birds the highest legal
protection.

Chiru (Tibetan Antelope) *

 It lives at a 3,250-5,500 metre elevation in high altitude plains and montane valleys comprising of alpine and
desert steppe and pasture, distinguished by low vegetation cover and productivity.
 This antelope is considered to be close to goat family.
 Predators such as wolf, lynx, snow leopard, and red fox are predators of chirus and their young calves.
 Protection Status:
o ‘Near Threatened’ in IUCN Red List.
o It has been enlisted in Schedule I of Wildlife Protection Act, 1972.
o To enhance its protection, its prime habitats have been declared as Wildlife Sanctuaries viz. Karakorma
Wildlife Sanctuary and Changthang Cold Desert Wildlife Sanctuary.
 Shahtoosh Shawls:
o Chiru for long time have been hunted for their underfur, which is renowned for its quality which is
traditionally woven into an extremely fine fabric to make Shahtoosh shawls.
o It takes three to five hides to make a single shawl.
o Moreover, the wool cannot be sheared or combed and to collect the fur, the animals have to be killed.
o At present, Shahtoosh shawls’ sale and possession is banned in India and in many countries.
 Parliamentary Panel suggests Captive Breeding:
o The Parliament panel was of view that MoEFCC should conserve and breed Chiru goat, which can then be
given to shawl makers for collecting hair.
o This would increase number of these goats but would also add to sustainable livelihood opportunities of
people of Kashmir, who are lot dependant on the handicraft of embroidered shawls. I
o t also cited that China and Mongolia are breeding Chiru goats for its wool, which is very expensive.
o The cost of an embroidered shahtoosh shawl can run into crores of rupees.
 MoEFCC rejects idea of Captive Breeding:
o Chiru is assessed as ‘Near Threatened’ by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)
2017.

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o Their current low population can only be maintained with continued high levels of protection in its
natural.
o Any relaxation in protection regime of animal will lead to rapid population decline due to commercial
poaching.
o Chiru inhabits high-altitude Tibetan plateau and requires large expanse of land for its movement and
ranging patterns to fulfil its feeding and breeding requirements.
o Rearing it in captivity is extremely difficult. Besides, any attempt to do conservation breeding at very high
altitude regions of Ladakh may not be economical or feasible as humans cannot be posted there
continuously for more than 2-3 months.
o Moreover Chinese also have failed to keep Chiru in captivity due to its poor survival rates.

Egyptian vulture *

 The Egyptian vulture ( Neophron percnopterus ) is classified under the ‘Endangered’ (EN) red list of the
International Union for Conversation of Nature (IUCN).
 The species is popularly known as safed giddh (white vulture) in Hindi.
 According to BirdLife International, a global partnership of organisations working for the conservation of birds,
the present global breeding population of the Egyptian vulture is estimated to be 12,000 to 38,000 individuals.
 Habitat Niche : Egyptian vultures usually build their nests on the cliffs of mountains, roofs of buildings and on
tree-tops.
 Food Niche of the species : The species rarely hunt its food — the birds mostly feed on dead carcasses of
animals, birds and reptiles. They eat eggs and sometimes, in the absence of animal carcasses, switch over to
household solid waste like rotten fruits and vegetables.
 Why in news? A new breeding centre for the species has started in Punjab University Campus.

Eurasian Otter

 IUCN status : Near Threatened


 Habitat : Himalayas and Some part of Western Ghats
 It has wide distribution covering Europe, Africa and Asia. But it is rare in India
 Why in news? Found in Satpura Tiger Reserve, MP

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Gangetic River Dolphin


 National Aquatic Animal of India
 They are freshwater dolphins
 IUCN Status : Endangered
 It is also placed in Schedule-I of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.
 Major threats:
o Fishing nets
o Hunting for their oil and meat
o Water pollution
 MoEFCC had launched Ganges River Dolphin Conservation Programme in 1997 to build a scientific database of
their population status and also study their habitat quality of the dolphins’ distribution range.
 Fresh water dolphin species are practically blind. They rely on bio-sonar method to move around and catch their
prey.

Golden Mahseer
 Golden mahseer is known as the tiger of Indian rivers.
 It has been declared endangered by the Washington-based International Union of Conservation of Natural
Resources.
 The mahseer, the longest-living freshwater fish, is native to mountain and sub-mountain regions. It belongs to
the genus Tor.
 The Pong Dam reservoir, around 250km from state capital Shimla and 190km from Chandigarh, supports an
ample population of the golden mahseer

Great Indian Bustard

 It is found in the exclusively in north-western plains particularly parts of Rajasthan and also Pakistan.
 It is one of the heaviest flying birds.
 IUCN Status : critically endangered bird.
 The reasons are depleting habitat, i.e. grasslands especially due to development of infrastructure intrusions.
 It is the state bird of Rajasthan.

Himalayan Griffon Vultures


 IUCN Status : Near Endangered
 Why vultures dying? Because of Diclofenac. It is a drug given to cattle in inflammation and pain. Vultures
are not able to break down Diclofenac and die of renal failure or kidney failure after eating carcasses of cattle
administered with the drug.
 What Government is doing?
o The Diclofenac drug was banned by Union Government of India for veterinary use in 2006. It was banned
to bring down prevalence of the drug in cattle carcasses and make the environment safe for vultures.
o Later in July 2015, the multi-dose vials of Diclofenac drug for human use were banned by the Drug
Controller General of India

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Himalayan Brown Bear


 IUCN Status: Critically endangered
 Distribution: In India, they are found in 23 protected areas of the northern states of Jammu and Kashmir,
Himachal Pradesh, and Uttaranchal

Himalayan Wolf

 Critically endangered
 Found in Nepal

Invasive Species
 An invasive species is a non-native organism that causes ecological harm after being introduced to a new
environment.
 Once they enter a new ecosystem, they can outcompete native organisms for resources like food, especially if
they lack natural predators.
 Some invasive species also carry diseases that kill native organisms and many will consume native plants and
animals.
 Invasive species can ultimately cause the decline or extinction of native species, decreasing biodiversity in an
ecosystem.
 Humans are responsible for the spread of a majority of earth’s invasive species, often carrying them to different
parts of the world on ships.

Irrawaddy dolphins *

 The Irrawaddy dolphin is an aquatic mammal


 It is a euryhaline species of oceanic dolphin.
 It is found in discontinuous subpopulations near sea coasts and in estuaries and rivers in parts of the Bay of
Bengal and Southeast Asia including the Ganges, the Mekong and in the Irrawaddy River from where it takes its
name.
 The species has been classified in 'vulnerable' category in IUCN red list.
 The species is also listed in Appendix I of CITES.
 Why in news?
o The endangered Irrawaddy dolphins have been sighted first time in the Rambha sector of Chilika Lake in
three decades.

Kashmir Red Stag


 The Kashmir Stag or Hangul is a subspecies of elk native to India.
 Earlier it was believed that it is a subspecies of red deer. But mitochondrial DNA genetic studies have revealed
that it is part of the Asian clade of elk.
 It is found in dense riverine forests in the high valleys and mountains of Kashmir Valley and northern Chamba
district of Himachal Pradesh.
 As per Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) nearly 3000 to 5000 Hanguls existed around the 1940s.
 But at present, only about 150 of them survive within its last bastion in Dachigam National Park located on
foothills of Zabarwan range on the outskirts of Srinagar, J&K.
 Protection status:
o It has been listed under Schedule-I of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 and J&K Wildlife (Protection)
Act, 1978.
o It also has been listed among the top 15 species of high conservation priority by the Central Government.
 Reasons for decline in population:
o habitat destruction,
o over-grazing by domestic livestock, and
o Poaching
 Why in news? IUCN to give critically endangered species status to it

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Kuji Mendha
 It is a threatened breed of sheep found only in coastal Jagatsinghpur and Kendrapara districts of Odisha
 It is declared ‘rare and singular species‘ by central government
 Kuji Mendha sheep are fast breeders giving multiple birth. Sheep in other parts of Odisha are not known for
giving multiple birth. This characteristic makes them distinctive from other species
 Kendrapara sheep are primarily used for production of mutton. The other product of economic importance is
their skin. They are well adapted to high ambient temperature, high humidity and heavy rains

Moss *
 Mosses are a common flowerless plant found in all cities especially in damp (humid) or shady locations.
 It generally absorb water and nutrients from their immediate environments, so it can reflect changes to
ecosystems.
 So it can be used as potential bioindicators to monitor urban pollution and to measure the impact of
atmospheric change.
 As a bioindicator, mosses respond to pollution or drought-stress by changing its shape, density or disappearing.

 This characteristic will allow scientists to calculate atmospheric alterations and air pollution.
 Drought-stress tends to occur in mosses found in areas with high levels of nitrogen pollution, which has negative
impact on health and biodiversity.

Nilgai
 It is also called bluebuck
 It is the largest Asian antelope (family Bovidae).
 The nilgai is indigenous to the Indian subcontinent.
 It is the only one of the four Indian antelopes that is still abundant.
 It is the largest of all Asian antelopes and is one of the most commonly seen wild animals in all of India.
 IUCN Status : Least Concern
 Why in news? Nilgai causes extensive damage to crops in gangetic plains. MoEFCC has asked state
governments to send proposals to declare wild animals vermin for specified period in a given area.

Ochotona sikimaria
 It is new species of Pika, a mammal belonging to the rabbit and hare family
 Found in the Himalayas in Sikkim
 They are a keystone species and ecosystem engineers
 They do not hibernate unlike other mammalian species inhabiting such cold climates.

Olive Ridley Turtles *


 Olive Ridley turtle is the smallest and most abundant of all sea turtle found in the world.
 It gets its name from its olive coloured carapace, which is heart-shaped and rounded.
 It is found in warm waters of the Pacific and Indian oceans.
 It spends entire lives in the ocean and migrates thousands of kilometres between feeding and mating grounds in
the course of a year.
 It is classified as Vulnerable in IUCN Red List and is listed in Appendix I of CITES.
 In India, it is protected under Wildlife (Protection) Act.
 Though found in abundance, their numbers have been declining over the past few years.
 Conservation of Olive Ridley turtles is done in the Krishna Wildlife Sanctuary (KWS),Andhra Pradesh.
 Members of the Yanadi tribe are directly involved in the conservation bid.
 They are best known for their behaviour of synchronized nesting in mass numbers.

Breeding Season:
 It commences its journey from Indian Ocean towards Bay of Bengal during their mating season in October and
November every year.
 A single female can lay up to 100 to 150 eggs in a pit dug on the beaches.

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 Six weeks later these eggs hatches and the newly hatched turtles start the journey to their Indian Ocean habitat.
 The destination for majority of the turtles for laying egg is Gahirmatha in Odisha.
 The sandy stretches of Hope Island of the Coringa Wildlife Sanctuary also have turned into a breeding
area

Why in news?
 Hope Island in Andhra Pradesh has become graveyard for Olive Ridley turtles.
 The breeding cycle of this species got severe blow due to mechanised fishing boats scouring in the Bay of Bengal
coastline. These boats crush most of these turtles under it leading to their death.

Red Sanders/Red Sandalwood /Saunders Wood *

 Found in southern Eastern Ghats mountain range of South India.


 This tree is valued for the rich red color of its wood. The wood is not aromatic.
 The tree is not to be confused with the aromatic Santalum sandalwood trees that grow natively in South India.
 Red sandalwood has been used for making the bridge and also the neck of the Japanese musical instrument
Shamisen and in furnitures in China for its porch appearance.

Sangai Brow-Antlered Deer

 It is an endemic and rare sub species of brow antlered deer found only in Manipur
 It is the state animal of Manipur
 Its habitat is restricted to the marshy wetland of Keibal Lamjao over the floating biomass in Loktak Lake
which is locally called ‘phumdi’
 While walking on the floating biomass, Sangai often balances itself which looks as if it is dancing on the green
grassland and therefore popularly called as ‘dancing deer’ of Manipur
 IUCN status : Endangered.

Sawfish *

 Sawfish also known as carpenter sharks are a family of rays.


 They are characterized by long, narrow, flattened rostrum or nose extension, lined with sharp transverse teeth
resembling saw.
 Sawfish are closely related to sharks and have shark-shaped bodies, hence, they are also called flat sharks.
 IUCN Status: Different Families of Sawfish are categorised in "Endangered" and "Critically
Endangered"
 It is also listed in Schedule I of the Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act 1972

Sloth Bear

 Indian Sloth bears are a species of bear found only in India, Nepal and Sri Lanka.
 It is nocturnal animal, locally known as KARADI, lives in open scrub forests having outcrop of rocks,
boulders and caves as shelter.
 They have poor vision and hearing but good sense of smell.
 Daroji sanctuary, Bellari, Karnataka established in 1994 is biggest sloth bear sanctuary in Asia.
 Current status: IUCN RED list – Vulnerable, in CITES included in Appendix I and Schedule I of wildlife
protection act, 1972

White Cheeked Macaque


 Newly discovered primate species in India.
 Found in Arunachal Pradesh’s Anjaw district

White Tiger *

 White tigers in India are nothing but a pigmentation variant of the Bengal tiger.
 In India, white tigers are predominantly found in Rewa, Madhya Pradesh.
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 In 2016, world’s first White Tiger Safari was inaugurated at Mukundpur in Satna district of Madhya
Pradesh.
 The first white tiger in Madhya Pradesh’s was spotted in Vindhya region in 1915. However, the rare breed of the
big cat spotted for the first time died in 1920.
 In 1951, a white tiger cub named Mohan was captured by Rewa Maharaja Martand Singh.
 Later the tiger cub became the progenitor of all known white tigers in the world after the Maharaja arranged for
its breeding.
 They have been reported in the wild from time to time in the Indian states of Assam, West Bengal, Bihar.
 These tigers have white fur because of the lack of the pigment pheomelanin, which is found in Bengal tigers with
orange colour fur.
 Why in news? White Tiger spotted in Nilgiris.

Miscellaneous (Came in news)

Aerosols
 Aerosols are tiny particles made from super-fine solid particles and liquid droplets carried in the atmosphere
 They often act as cloud condensation nuclei around which cloud droplets are formed.
 Aerosols can also modify the size of existing cloud particles, and change how the clouds reflect and absorb
sunlight, leading to haze and much redder sunrises and sunsets.

Antlers
What are Antlers?
Antlers are the extensions of the deer’s skull. There are three deer varieties deer, sambar, and barking deer having
antlers and are found in Kerala. They shed their antlers annually. It is believed that antlers have medicinal values and
are mainly used for invigorating spleen, strengthening bones/muscles and boosting blood flow.

Why in news?
The Kerala SBWL had approved a request from the state-run Aushadhi to collect and use antlers shed by spotted deer
and sambars in zoos for preparing ayurvedic medicines. However, the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 prohibits (bans)
sale and use of antlers in India. Tonnes of antlers are kept in the stores of Department of Museums and Zoos as the
sale and use of antlers are banned. SBWL is seeking suitable amendments to the Wildlife Protection Act for using the
antlers for medicinal purposes.

What Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 says?


The Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972, has included antler in the definition of wildlife trophy that may be whole or any
part of any captive animal or wild animal. Section 39 of the Act prohibits person from acquiring or keeping trophies in
his possession without the previous permission of Chief Wildlife Warden or the authorised officer. Wildlife and
wildlife trophies are considered to be owned by the government. The Act prescribes imprisonment up to 3 years and a
fine of Rs. 25,000 for offences involving wildlife trophies

Biochemical Oxygen demand *

 Biochemical oxygen demand (BOD, also called biological oxygen demand) is the amount of dissolved
oxygen (DO) needed (i.e., demanded) by aerobic biological organisms to break down organic material present
in a given water sample at certain temperature over a specific time period.
 The BOD value is most commonly expressed in milligrams of oxygen consumed per litre of sample during 5 days
of incubation at 20 °C and is often used as a surrogate of the degree of organic pollution of water.
 BOD can be used as a gauge of the effectiveness of wastewater treatment plants.

Why is BOD important?


 Biochemical Oxygen Demand is an important water quality parameter because it provides an index to assess the
effect discharged wastewater will have on the receiving environment.
 The higher the BOD value, the greater the amount of organic matter or “food” available for oxygen consuming
bacteria.
 If the rate of DO consumption by bacteria exceeds the supply of DO from aquatic plants, algae photosynthesis or
diffusing from air, unfavourable conditions occur.

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 Depletion of DO causes stress on aquatic organisms, making the environment unsuitable for life. Further,
dramatic depletion can lead to hypoxia or anoxic environments.
 BOD is also used extensively for wastewater treatment, as decomposition of organic waste by microorganisms is
commonly used for treatment.

Biodiversity

 The term Biological Diversity was first coined by wildlife scientist and conservationist Raymond F. Dasmann in
1968.
 This term became widespread in use during 1980s.
 Biodiversity refers to the “totality of genes, species and ecosystems of a region”.
 There are three levels of biodiversity :
1. Species diversity,
2. Ecosystem diversity and
3. Genetic diversity.
 Biodiversity is unequally distributed on Earth and it varies across regions on the basis of climatic and
geographical factors.
 On earth, highest biodiversity is found in tropics.
 In comparison to Oceans, terrestrial biodiversity is much greater.
 It is estimated that there are 8.7 million species on earth of which 2.1 million live in Oceans while rest are
terrestrial.
 The terrestrial biodiversity is greater at equator in comparison to poles.
 Around 90% of world’s biodiversity is found in tropical rainforests which occupy less than 10 percent of Earth’s
surface.
 The marine biodiversity is highest along the coasts in the Western Pacific which is known for highest sea
temperature.
 Around 70% of World species are found in 12 countries viz. Australia, Brazil, China, Columbia, Costa Rica,
Congo, Ecuador, India, Indonesia, Madagascar, Mexico and Peru.

Bio-medical waste
What is Bio-Medical Waste?
 Bio-medical waste is any solid or liquid waste including its container and any intermediate product generated
during the diagnosis, treatment or immunization of human beings or animals or research activities.
 Biomedical waste poses hazard due to two principal reasons:
1. toxicity and
2. infectivity.
 Bio Medical waste consists of human anatomical waste like organs, tissues and body parts, waste sharps like
hypodermic needles, syringes, scalpels and broken glass, discarded medicines and cytotoxic drugs, liquid waste
from any of infected areas etc.
 In 2016, the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests had issued new Bio-medical Waste Management Rules,
2016 for proper discarding of the bio-medical waste.

Carbon Neutrality
What is carbon neutrality?
 Carbon neutrality occurs when the net carbon emissions over an entire year is zero or when the entity absorbs or
offsets the same amount of emission that was generated.
 For Ex. If a units emits 100 tonne of CO2 equivalent of GHGs in a year than to become carbon neutral it must
absorb or offset 100 tonne of CO2 emissions by measures like planting trees, installing solar panels etc.

CFCs and OZONE *

 CFCs are long-lived chemical compounds that eventually rise into the stratosphere, where they are broken apart
by the sun’s ultraviolet radiation, releasing chlorine atoms that go on to destroy ozone molecules.
 CFCs have lifetimes from 50 to 100 years, so they linger in the atmosphere for a very long time.
 Stratospheric ozone protects life on the planet by absorbing potentially harmful ultraviolet radiation that can
cause skin cancer and cataracts, suppress immune systems and damage plant life.

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 The Antarctic ozone hole forms during September in the southern hemisphere’s winter as the returning sun’s
rays catalyze ozone destruction cycles involving chlorine and bromine that come primarily from CFCs.
 When ozone destruction is ongoing, chlorine is found in many molecular forms, most of which are not
measured. But after chlorine has destroyed nearly all the available ozone, it reacts instead with methane to form
hydrochloric acid.
 According to the study published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, the Antarctic ozone hole
should continue to recover gradually as CFCs leave the atmosphere, but complete recovery will take decades.

Climate Smart Agriculture


 Climate smart agriculture (CSA) is an integrative approach to address interlinked challenges of food security and
climate change.
 It has at three main objectives:
o Sustainably increasing agricultural productivity, to support equitable increases in farm incomes, food
security and development;
o Adapting and building resilience to climate change at multiple levels; and
o Reducing and/or removing greenhouse gas emissions, where possible.
 It is supported by Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO)

Dead Zone in Sea

 Dead Zone is an area in water body that contains little or no oxygen (or they are hypoxic) in bottom and near-
bottom water.
 Mostly they occur naturally but it can be caused by excessive nutrient pollution from human activities coupled
with other factors.
 They are well-known off western coasts of North and South America, off coast of Namibia and off west coast of
India in Arabian Sea.
 In recent times, warming of the atmosphere through climate change is predicted to lead expansion of ‘dead
zones’ in the ocean.
 Why in news? Scientists have discovered a huge dead zone in Bay of Bengal.

Earth Day
 April 22
 Earth Day was first celebrated in 1970.
 Earth Day celebrations are coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network
 The aim of the day is to bring attention to environmental issues to spark changes that will result in a healthy,
sustainable environment. This includes addressing climate change and finding ways to protect the planet for
future generations
 Theme for Earth Day 2016: Environmental & Climate Literacy

Eco-Sensitive Zone
 It is created to act as a buffer for further protection around Protected Areas (PAs) such as National Parks
and Wildlife sanctuaries.
 Activities around such areas are regulated and managed so as to protect the environment.
 ESZ is notified under Section 3 of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 by the Union Ministry of
Environment and Forest.
 ESZ Guidelines classify activities under three categories:
o Prohibited: Commercial Mining, Setting of Saw Mill, Setting of industries causing pollution,
establishment of major hydroelectric projects etc.
o Regulated: Felling of Trees, Establishment of hotels and resorts, erection of electrical cables, drastic
change of agricultural systems etc.
o Permitted: Ongoing agriculture and horticulture practices by local communities, rain water harvesting,
organic farming etc.
 Many states are opposed to ESZ because of presence of minerals and resources side by side.
 Local people in many areas are also opposed to ESZ for loss of livelihood due to restriction placed by it on
various activities

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Environmentally Friendly Plastics


There are three types of environmentally friendly plastics:
 Bio-plastics made from natural materials such as corn starch. Unlike traditional plastics and biodegradable
plastics, bio-plastics generally do not produce a net increase in carbon dioxide gas when they break down
(because the plants that were used to make them absorbed the same amount of carbon dioxide to begin with).
Another good thing about bio-plastics is that they're compostable: they decay into natural materials that blend
harmlessly with soil.
 Biodegradable plastics made from traditional petrochemicals, which are engineered to break down more
quickly. They contain additives that cause them to decay more rapidly in the presence of light and oxygen
(moisture and heat help too). Unlike bio-plastics, biodegradable plastics are made of normal (petrochemical)
plastics and don't always break down into harmless substances: sometimes they leave behind a toxic residue and
that makes them generally (but not always) unsuitable for composting.
 Recycled plastics which are simply plastics made from recycled plastic materials rather than raw
petrochemicals.

Fly Ash

 Fly ash is one of the coal combustion products and is composed of fine particles that are driven out of the boiler
with flue gases. Ash that falls at the bottom of the boiler is called bottom ash.
 Fly ash includes substantial amounts of oxides of silica, aluminum and calcium. Element like Arsenic, Boron,
Chromium, lead etc. are also found in trace concentrations. It, thus, poses hazards to environment and health.
 Due to the presence of these minerals it has certain unique properties. It can be used as construction material,
filling old mines, building railway embankments, and reclamation of low-lying areas

Gaj Yatra *

Gaj Yatra Campaign


 It is a nationwide campaign to protect elephants launched by Ministry of Environment and Forest.
 The campaign is planned to cover 12 elephant range states across the country.
 It is a 15 months campaign led by the Wildlife Trust of India (WTI).
 The campaign aims create awareness about elephant corridors to encourage free movement in their habitat.
 During the period of the campaign, artists and craftsmen will create life-size works on the theme of elephants in
places along the route of the
roadshow using local art and craft.

Facts:
 As per the available population estimates, there are about 400,000 African elephants and 40,000 Asian
elephants across the globe.
 Asian elephants are listed as “endangered” and African elephants are listed as “vulnerable” in the IUCN Red List
of threatened species.

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Graphene based censor

 Scientists have developed a graphene-based sensor and switch that can detect air pollution inside homes.
 The sensor detects individual carbon dioxide (CO2) molecules and volatile organic compound gas molecules
found in buildings, furniture and even household goods.

Ice Shelf
 Ice Shelf is a floating extension of land-based glaciers which flow into the ocean.
 As they already float in the ocean, their melting does not directly contribute to sea-level rise.
 The breaking of ice shelves is a natural process but global warming is thought to have accelerated this
process.
 In recent years, many ice shelves has disintegrated due to global warming.

Keystone Species
Keystone species determine the ability of a large number of other species to survive in the ecosystem. When they
become extinct, it has cascading effect on extinction of other species. Example of keystone species is bees as
pollination of fruits and flowers is dependent on them

Light Pollution
What is Light pollution?
 Light pollution is artificial brightening of the night sky caused by man-made lightening sources
 It has a disruptive effect on natural cycles and inhibits the observation of stars and planets.
 It is also known as photopollution or luminous pollution
 Why in news? China has set up a dark sky reserve in Tibet to limit light pollution

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Mangalajodi Ecotourism Trust *


 Mangalajodi Ecotourism Trust is community owned and managed venture on banks of Chilika Lake in Odisha.
 It has won prestigious United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) Award for Innovation in Tourism
Enterpris.
 The villagers of Mangalajodi were once associated with poaching of birds near Chilika Lake but now they stand
as true defenders of wildlife in the region.
 The change was mainly due to a coordinated effort in implementing an awareness campaign on importance of
preserving natural species and benefits associated with wildlife tourism.
 The change has soared numbers of birds from 2000 (during peak unsustainable hunting) to over three lakh in
the region.
 Moreover other visible impacts this change has resulted in increasing revenue through ecotourism, sharp fall in
poaching incidents and increasing support of villagers.

Note: This can be used as a case study for community based conservation efforts.

Mission Innovation

 It aims to accelerate global clean energy innovation with the following aims
o to make clean energy affordable
o to address climate change
o to create green jobs and commercial opportunities
 It includes participating countries doubling their clean energy R&D investment
 It is required to meet economic and energy security goals in timely manner
 India is Founding Member of the Steering Committee and also a Member of the two sub-groups: Joint research
and Capacity Building and Private Sector Engagement
 It was announced by the leaders of 20 countries that have a shared desire to accelerate global clean energy
innovation during COP 21 in Paris.

Operation Save Kurma *


 The operation was conducted to combat the proliferating illegal trade of live turtles and its parts from the
country to destinations abroad.
 The operation was also aimed to invite attention of the enforcement agencies towards such illegal trade.
 During the operation conducted from December 15, 2016 to January 30, 2017, approximately 16,000 live turtles
and tortoises were seized and released back into the wild.
 WCCB had worked in close collaboration with regional law enforcement agencies of different states.
 Why in news?
o India was awarded certificate of commendation for its effort to combat illegal wildlife trade by Convention
on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).
o The award was given to Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB) for its efforts in conducting and
coordinating species-specific wildlife enforcement operation, codenamed ‘Operation Save Kurma’.

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