National Skills Qualification Framework (NSQF)

Context: In 2013, India’s skill agenda got a push when the government introduced the National Skills Qualification Framework (NSQF). This organises all qualifications according to a series of levels of knowledge, skills and aptitude, just like classes in general academic education. For each trade/occupation or professional qualification, course content should Read More …

IIP: how this index is calculated, and what it says about factory output

Context: Data released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) showed that factory output growth had slipped to a 17-month low in November. This growth is measured on the basis of the “Index of Industrial Production (IIP)”. The index & its importance The IIP is a composite indicator that measures changes in the Read More …

Why China Moon landing is significant

Context: China announced that its Chang’e-4 probe had successfully transmitted back images from the far side (also known as the dark side) of the Moon. Chang’e-4 is the first probe ever to land on that side. What is the dark side of the Moon, and why have none of the Read More …

National Clean Air Programme

Context: The Centre launched what it described as a “war against pollution” across the country — a Rs 300-crore National Clean Air Programme (NCAP). It proposes a “tentative national target” of 20%-30% reduction in PM2.5 and PM10 concentrations by 2024, with 2017 as the base year for comparison. NCAP will be rolled Read More …

All along the coastline

What changes will the notification bring? The Cabinet has approved a significant relaxation of development controls along the coastline through the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) Notification 2018, as part of a plan to encourage construction of buildings and launch tourism activities in areas that are closer to the high tide Read More …

Exotic trees eating up Western Ghat’s grasslands

Context: The new year heralds bad news for the high-altitude grasslands of the Western Ghats. Over four decades, the country lost almost one-fourth of these grasslands and exotic invasive trees are primarily to blame, find scientists. Though grassland afforestation using pine, acacia and eucalyptus ceased in 1996, the exotics still Read More …

Greenhouse gas emissions up 22% between 2010 and 2014

Context: India’s total greenhouse gas emissions grew by more than 22 per cent between 2010 and 2014, reaching a level of 2.6 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent in 2014 according to latest report submitted in India’s second Biennial Update Report (BUR) to the UNFCC. India had submitted its first Read More …

Regulatory Indicators for Sustainable Energy (RISE) 2018

Context:  World Bank has released its report — Regulatory Indicators for Sustainable Energy (RISE) 2018 — charting global progress on sustainable energy policies. The report was released on the sidelines of the 24th Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change(COP24). Findings of the report: Many of the Read More …

SDG India Index: Baseline Report 2018

Context: According to a first-of-its-kind SDG index released by NITI Aayog: Himachal Pradesh, Kerala, and Tamil Nadu have been ranked highest in terms of being on track to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals The SDG Index comprises a composite score for each State and Union Territory based on Read More …

Centre stipulates NOC, conservation fee for groundwater extraction

Context: The ministry of water resources, river development and Ganga rejuvenation has notified new guidelines which stipulate that individual houses which have more than one well or use more than 1-inch diameter delivery pipes will have to obtain a no-objection certificate from the Central Ground Water Authority and also pay Read More …