How IVF is reversing an imminent extinction

Context Researchers said last week that they had created another embryo — the third — of the nearly extinct northern white rhino, a remarkable success in an ongoing global mission to keep the species from going extinct. “It’s amazing to see that we will be able to reverse the tragic Read More …

How destructive are locust attacks?

Context Over the past several weeks, locust attacks emanating from the desert area in Pakistan have struck parts of Rajasthan and Gujarat, causing heavy damage to standing crop. The situation is being closely monitored by agri-experts in the states and the Centre. The agriculture department in neighbouring Punjab, however, on Read More …

Taal volcano in the Philippines

Context Recently In the Philippines, a volcano called Taal on the island of Luzon, 50 km from Manila, erupted , spewing lava on the ground, and ash and smoke into the sky. Although Taal is a tiny volcano, the eruption has caused concerns in the Philippines. There are several reasons: A complex Read More …

State of Forest Report 2019

Context India’s forest cover has increased by 3,976 sq km or 0.56% since 2017. For the second successive time since 2007, the biennial State of Forest Report (SFR) recorded a gain — an impressive 1,275 sq km — in dense forest (including Very Dense Forest with a canopy density of over 70%, Read More …

Delhi gets its first smog tower

Context In November, the Supreme Court had directed the Centre and the Delhi government to prepare a plan to install ‘smog towers’ across the capital to deal with air pollution. What is a ‘smog tower’, how does the one at Delhi’s Lajpat Nagar work? Smog towers are structures designed to work as Read More …

What carbon numbers mean for climate target

Context The State of Forest Report (SFR) 2019, while showing an increase in the carbon stock trapped in Indian forests in the last two years, also shows why it is going to be an uphill task for India in meeting one of its international obligations on climate change. India, as part Read More …

Great Indian Bustard

Context Once the frontrunner to be named India’s national bird, the Great Indian Bustard has long been on the brink of extinction. The Great Indian Bustard (GIB), is one of the heaviest flying birds, and is found mainly in the Indian subcontinent. Barely 150 of these birds are estimated to Read More …

Why EU Green Deal matters?

Context The European Union has come up with a climate action plan when the global climate talks failed to reach key objectives. What is the EU’s plan, how does it compare to others’, and how much remains to be done? The annual climate talks ended in Madrid last week with Read More …

Australia’s jungles and scrubland on fire

Context Recently Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison defended his country’s climate policy, and described calls to make cuts to the coal industry as “reckless”, as Australia continued to reel from a bushfire crisis. Bushfires are routine in Australia, but this bushfire season is among the worst ever, having started in Read More …

What is Blue Water Force?

Context On December 4, Navy Day, the office of Defence Minister Rajnath Singh posted on Twitter: “Indian Navy is the Formidable Blue Water Force. Navy Day Greetings to all Men and Women in White.” In a video presentation about its capabilities, the Navy too, called itself a “formidable blue water force”. Blue Read More …