Facts Corner-Part-59

National Environment and Engineering Research Institute (NEERI)

  • NEERI is a pioneer laboratory in the field of environmental science and engineering.
  • The Institute was established at Nagpur in the year 1958, as Central Public Health Engineering Research Institute (CPHERI).
  • The Institute was renamed in 1974 as National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI).
  • NEERI is a constituent of Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR), New Delhi.
  • CSIR-NEERI has initiated vital outcome-driven R&D activities under CSIR-800 program to benefit rural people of India in terms of water pollution control, air pollution control and waste to wealth.

Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP)

  • The CPTPP is a new free trade agreement between 11 Asia-Pacific countries.
  • Its members—Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam—constitute 13.5% of the world economy.
  • The economies of the CPTPP members will be made 1.7% larger than they would have been, on average, by 2030.
  • It provides freer trade and investment access among its members.
  • After USA withdrawing itself from Trans Pacific Partnership agreement, the other members of TPP planned to go ahead by signing the CPTPP agreement.
  • All 11 TPP countries are members of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC)

Butterfly fish

  • In order to survive, melon Butterfly fish changed their behavior to adapt to coral death caused by climate change.
  • The bleaching event of 2010 killed patches of corals in several reefs off the Lakshadweep Islands.
  • Despite these large differences in coral cover across the reefs in Lakshadweep, melon butterfly fish numbers were similar in the region.
  • Butterfly fish relies on live coral for food and has been shown to decline substantially (67%) following climate-induced coral depletion.
  • This species is widely distributed in the Indian Ocean, ranging from coastal East Africa to Raja Ampat (Indonesia), and Christmas Island (Australia).
  • It is found in coral rich, protected areas in lagoons and on seaward reefs.
  • It is found at depths of up to 20 m.
  • The species has declined significantly in Seychelles where there has been coral loss and bleaching.

Ecological Succession

  • The process by which communities of plant and animal species in an area are replaced or changed into another over a period of time is known as ecological succession.
  • The first species to colonize an area is called pioneer community.
  • The final stage of succession is called the climax community.
  • The stages leading to climax community are
  • Also called successional stages or seres.

Types of Succession:

Primary Succession

  • Succession is hence a process that starts where no living organisms are there – these could be areas where no living organisms ever existed.

Secondary Succession

  • In areas that somehow, lost all the living organisms that existed there. It is termed as secondary succession.

Autogenic Succession

  • Autogenic succession is driven by the biotic components of the ecosystem.

Allogenic succession

  • Allogenic succession is succession driven by the abiotic components of an ecosystem. Succession of micro-organisms including fungi

Coalbed methane (CBM)

  • It is a form of natural gas extracted from coal beds.
  • It is called ‘sweet gas’ because of its lack of Hydrogen Sulphide. 
    Issues with the Hydrogen Sulphide-

The presence of this gas is well known from its occurrence in underground coal mining, where it presents a serious safety risk.

  • Coalbed methane is distinct from a typical sandstone or other conventional gas reservoir, as the methane is stored within the coal by a process called adsorption. 
  • Adsorption is the adhesion of atoms, ions or molecules from a gas, liquid or dissolved solid to a surface. This process creates a film of the adsorbate on the surface of the adsorbent.
  • The methane is in a near-liquid state, lining the inside of pores within the coal (called the matrix).
  • The open fractures in the coal (called the cleats) can also contain free gas or can be saturated with water.
  • Unlike much natural gas from conventional reservoirs, coalbed methane contains very little heavier hydrocarbons such as propane or butane, and no natural-gas condensate. It often contains up to a few percent carbon dioxide.

International Energy Forum

  • The International Energy Forum (IEF) is an inter-governmental arrangement set up in 1991.  It is based in Riyadh.
  • It serves as a neutral facilitator of informal, open, informed and continuing global energy dialogue among its members comprising of energy producing and energy consuming states, including transit countries.
  • There are 72 membercountries of IEF, including India, covering all six continents, which are signatories to the Charter of the IEF. Its membership accounts for 90% of global supply and demand for oil and gas. 
  • By virtue of being among the top 11 largest consumers of oil and gas (India is presently 4th), India has been the Permanent Member of the Executive Board since its set-up in 2002.
  • India had earlier hosted the 5th IEF Ministerial in 1996 at Goa.

Green Growth Equity Fund

  • The government’s National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF) is in talks with private equity firm Everstone Group for a tie-up to manage its Green Growth Equity Fund (GGEF).
  • The Green Growth Equity Fund will be the second investment platform to be set up by NIIF.
  • GGEF, which will invest in renewable energy assets, is a joint venture between NIIF and the UK government.
  • GGEF would be managed by a third-party investment manager, selected by NIIF Limited and the UK government through an efficient and robust screening and selection process.

Bureau of Indian Standards

  • The Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) is the national Standards Body of India working under the aegis of Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution.
  • It is established by the Bureau of Indian Standards Act, 1986.
  • The Minister in charge of the Ministry or Department having administrative control of the BIS is the ex-officio President of the BIS.
  • As a corporate body, it has 25 members drawn from Central or State Governments, industry, scientific and research institutions, and consumer organisations.
  • It also works as WTO-TBT enquiry point for India.

Virtual/ Cryptocurrencies

  • Founded as a peer-to-peer electronic payment system, cryptocurrencies enable transfer of money between parties, without going through a banking system.
  • These digital payment systems are based on cryptographic proof of the chain of transactions, deriving their name, Cryptocurrency.
  • These employ cryptographic algorithms and functions to ensure anonymity (privacy) of the users (who are identified by an alphanumeric public key), security of the transactions and integrity of the payment systems.

Kaniyan Koothu

  • Kaniyan Koothu, a folk art with elements of classical music, is performed by the Kaniyan community.
  • It is an invocation to Sudalai Madan, the Lord of the Graveyards.
  • Kaniyans are a Scheduled Tribe whose population is less than 750 and only around 200 persons are currently performing the art.
  • Magudam and mantham are the instruments used by the artists.
  • The main singer of the troupe is called as ‘Annavi’.
  • The annavi is usually supported by a second singer.
  • Two artists play the magudam – one plays the bass and the other the sharper version.
  • Two men, dressed as women, dance to the tune with boundless energy.
  • The art is facing a crisis not because of lack of patronage, but because not many come forward to take up it as a profession.
  • In addition, many dancers of the Kaniyan koothu are from the families of paavai koothu (puppetry) artists who hail from Maharashtra.

3R Forum

  • The Eighth Regional 3R (Reduce, Recycle and Recovery) Forum in Asia and the Pacific is all set to commence in Indore, India.
  • The Forum is hosted by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.
  • It is co-organized  by the  Ministry  of  the  Environment,  Government  of  Japan,  and  the  United Nations  Centre  for  Regional  Development  of  the  Division  for  Sustainable Development /United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs.
  • The  overall  theme  of the forum is  “Achieving  Clean  Water,  Clean  Land  and Clean  Air  through  3R  and  Resource  Efficiency  –  A  21st  Century  Vision  for Asia-Pacific  Communities”.
  • Forum will see participation of around 40 mayors of cities around the world and mayors of more than 100 cities across India.
  • The signing and subsequent adoption of the ‘Indore 3R Declaration on Achieving Clean Water, Clean Land and Clean Air’ in cities by mayors and city authorities is the major expected outcome of the event.
  • The  Forum  aims  to  address  how  3R  and  resource efficiency  measures  can  provide  complementary  benefits  in  making  cities and  countries  clean,  smart,  livable  and  resilient.

Atal Innovation Mission

  • It was launched by NITI Aayog
  • The program aims to promote innovation and entrepreneurship nationwide in schools, universities and industry, has selected additional 2441 Schools for establishment of Atal Tinkering Labs (ATLs).
  • ATLs are innovation play workspaces for students between Grade VI to Grade XII, stimulating innovations combining science & technology.
  • The active participation by Schools and their students in ATL will power the transformations of ‘New India’ through their creativity and innovation.


  • An organ has been identified by scientists which might be the “biggest organ” in the human body.
  • It is named as Interstitium.
  • Interstitium would be the 80th organ in the human body.
  • Before the study, it was thought that the connective tissue underneath the skin and lining other organs was a dense layer.
  • The new human organ is actually a network of compartments filled with liquid.
  • These interstitial spaces are organized by a collagen “mesh” and can shrink and expand “and may thus serve as shock absorbers.”
  • Insterstitum spaces may play a crucial role in helping cancer spread to different parts of the body making it metastatic.

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