IAS Abhiyan Prelims inFocus-November 2022

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IAS Abhiyan Prelims inFocus-September 2021

IAS Abhiyan Prelims inFocus-November 2022

  1. In the background, Copenhagen Declaration on Anti-Doping in Sport was agreed to by the Government of India in March, 2003, which was the political document through which Governments signalled their intention to formally recognize and implement the World Anti-Doping Code brought out by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).  This was the first step towards the preparation of the UNESCO International Convention against Doping in Sport. India is a signatory to the International Convention Against Doping in Sport, also known as the “UNESCO Anti-Doping Convention”, which was ratified by India on 07 November 2007. The purpose of the Convention is to promote the prevention of and the fight against doping in sports, with a view to its elimination. The National Anti-Doping Agency, an autonomous body under the Ministry of Youth Affairs, is responsible for adopting, implementing and enforcing anti-doping programmes in India. In the Asia-Oceania region, there are a total of 55 member countries (40 in Asia and 15 in Oceania), who are signatories to the Convention.
  2. United Cities and Local Governments Asia Pacific (UCLG ASPAC) is proud to take action by supporting and advocating for cities to join the Cities Race to Zero and Cities Race to Resilience. The Cities Race to Zero and Cities Race to Resilience are tracking measurements for Race to Zero and Race to Resilience campaigns for cities only, where cities come together to show support for inclusive climate change action in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement. UCLG ASPAC is also the Southeast Asia Secretariat for Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy (GCoM), therefore this is also part of fulfilling its role as Secretariat to gather more and more cities and regions to join and express their commitments to accelerate measurable climate and energy initiatives that lead to an inclusive, low-emission and climate resilient future. Another form of support is consolidation amongst networks of local and regional governments. Together with other partners, such as C40 Cities, CDP Worldwide, Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy(GCoM), ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability (ICLEI), Resilient Cities Network, World Wildlife Fund (WWF), and the World Resources Institute (WRI); we have collaborated with recruiting cities around the world to successfully achieve the Race to Zero and Race to Resilience goals ahead of and beyond the UNFCCC COP26.
  3. Harike wetland, spread over 86 square kilometers in Tarn Taran, Ferozepur, and Kapurthala districts, serves as a home to rare species of migratory water birds during the winter season. The wetland is situated on the confluence of Sutlej and Beas rivers. Apart from the Harike wetland, migratory water birds also arrive at Keshopur Miani wetland, Nangal wetland, Ropar wetland, Kanjli wetland and Beas river wetland in the state of Punjab.
  4. A study spanning 13 years has shed interesting light on flowering in Melocanna baccifera, a tropical bamboo species that has long fascinated researchers for its association with the occurrence of ‘bamboo death,’ ‘rat floods’ and famines in northeast India. Among other things, researchers detected a correlation between the sugar content in the fruit of Melocanna baccifera and the frenzied feeding and population boom in rats during ‘Mautam’, the cyclical, mass bamboo flowering that occurs once in 48 years. Called ‘Muli’ in northeast India, Melocanna baccifera is the largest fruit-producing bamboo and is native to the northeast India-Myanmar region. During its gregarious flowering, the bamboo produces large fruits which draw animal visitors/predators. Of these, black rats greatly relish the fleshy, berry-like fruit. During this period, they also multiply rapidly, a phenomenon dubbed as ‘rat flood.’ Once the fruits are gone, they start devouring standing crops, causing famines that have claimed thousands of human lives.
  5. The 47th AIBD Annual Gathering / 20th AIBD General Conference and Associated Meetings held in New Delhi on 19-20 September 2022 witnessed a range of discussions, presentations and idea exchange sessions especially focusing on the topic of “Building a Stronger Future of Broadcasting in post pandemic era”. A five year plan for co-operative activities and exchange programmes was also finalised. All the participating countries and member broadcasters pledged to work together for a sustainable broadcasting environment, latest technology know-how, finest content creation, various co-operative activities.” The Asia-Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development (AIBD) was established in August 1977 under the auspices of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO). It is a unique regional inter-governmental organisation servicing country of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN-ESCAP) in the field of electronic media development. It is hosted by the Government of Malaysia and the secretariat is located in Kuala Lumpur. The International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) are the founding organisations of the Institute and they are non-voting members of the General Conference. Full membership of the AIBD is confined to sovereign states and they are invited to designate the broadcasting authority of the country to be the beneficiary. The AIBD currently has 26 Full Members (countries), represented by 43 organisations, and 50 Affiliate Members (organisations) with a total membership of 93 representing 46 countries and regions and over 50 partners in Asia, Pacific, Europe, Africa, Arab States and North America.
  6. Darjeeling Tea, called the ‘Champagne of Teas’, was the first Indian product to get the GI (Geographical Identification) tag in 2004 for its distinctive aroma and flavour.
  7. The OneLove campaign was launched in the Netherlands on September 26, 2020 as a direct response to the racist attack on Moreira. The campaign stood against all forms of discriminationwhile focusing on the power of the sport to bring people together, in spite of all their differences.
  8. AI research firm, OpenAI built the GPT-3 (Generative Pre-trained Transformer 3) set of models named Davinci, Curie, Babbage, and Ada that can generate “natural” text responses and perform tasks like classification, simple summaries, address correction, answering questions, and more.
  9. French President Emmanuel Macron announced the end of the decade-long Operation Barkhane in Africa.
  10. The Global Dashboard for Vaccine Equity, a joint effort by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the University of Oxford with cooperation across the UN system, has put out recent data that justifies the vexatious core of the vaccine distribution programme: Only one in four people has been vaccinated with at least one dose in low and middle income countries as of November 9, 2022.
  11. Founded by developer Eugen Rochko, Mastodon was released in 2016. The social media platform’s main appeal was that it was decentralised, open source, and represented a vision of what its founder wanted Twitter to be. Rather than being controlled by a CEO or a centralised moderation team, Mastodon users pick “servers” which host their data and let them access the same platform.
  12. The C-295MW is a transport aircraft of 5-10 tonne capacity which will replace the legacy Avro aircraft in the Indian Air Force (IAF) procured in the 1960s. With the procurement of these aircraft, India has become the 35th C-295 operator worldwide.
  13. Toxoplasma gondii, a multi-host protozoan parasite capable of infecting any warm-blooded species, might be the reason why some wolves can take more significant risks and establish themselves as leaders of packs. Yellowstone National Park has a diverse population of carnivores, including grey wolves ( Canis lupus) and cougars ( Puma concolor), which are intermediate and definitive hosts of T. gondii, respectively.
  14. The Narco test is also known as the narcoanalysis test. During the test, sodium pentothal is injected into the person’s body. Also known as the ‘truth serum’, this injection transports the accused to a hypnotic state. In this state, it is believed, the accused is incapable of lying. But in India, the Narco analysis report is not admissible as primary evidence in the court.
  15. A polygraph test is another form of physiological examination, but in this test, no substances are injected into the person’s body. Instead, instruments to measure blood pressure, pulse rate, breathing, sweat glands and blood flow is attached to the person. After this, he/she would have to answer some questions. A numerical value is assigned to each response to calculate if the person is lying or telling the truth.
  16. Orion (officially Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle or Orion MPCV) is a partially reusable crewed spacecraft used in NASA’s Artemis program. Capable of supporting a crew of six beyond low Earth orbit, Orion can last up to 21 days undocked and up to six months docked.
  17. The claustrum has long been known to exchange signals with much of the cortex, which plays a significant role in higher reasoning and complex thought. The claustrum was once supposed to be ‘the seat of consciousness,’ however new work interprets it to be more like a high-speed internet router, taking in executive commands from “boss” areas of the brain’s cortex that forms complex thoughts to generate “networks” in the cortex. Acting like a router, the claustrum coordinates these networks to work together to accomplish the many different cognitively demanding tasks we perform on a moment-to-moment basis in everyday life.
  18. The first genetically modified (GM) food ever made commercially available to the public was a tomato, invented in the US in 1994.
  19. Scientists in Southern California have recently found a living specimen of a minuscule clam that was previously only found in fossil form on the shores of Santa Barbara. The clam is called Cymatioa cooki and is translucent with cryptic habits, according to the researchers.
  20. Scientists have identified an orally administered drug which they found lowers cholesterol in animal models by 70%. A class of medication called PCSK9 inhibitors are highly effective agents which help the body pull excess cholesterol from the blood, but unlike statins, which are available as oral agents, PCSK9 inhibitors can only be administered as shots, creating barriers to their use, researchers in the US said. But in the latest study, the researchers developed an orally administered small-molecule drug that reduces PCSK9 levels, thereby lowering cholesterol.
  21. A tropical bamboo species called Melocanna baccifera has long intrigued researchers for its association with the occurrence of ‘bamboo death’, ‘rat floods’ and famines in northeast India. In a new study, researchers in Thiruvananthapuram have shown that rats are attracted to the sugars present in this fruit rather than its protein content as previously thought. 
  22. The Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai volcano erupted underwater with a force equivalent to hundreds of atomic bombs, unleashing a 15-metre (50-foot) tsunami which demolished homes and killed at least three people on the Pacific island kingdom.
  23. There are five significant mass extinctions, called the ‘Big Five’, that have shaped the evolution of animals—the Ordovician-Silurian Extinction (440 million years ago), the late Devonian Extinction (370 million years ago), the Permian-Triassic Extinction (250 million years ago), the Triassic-Jurassic Extinction (200 million years ago), and the most recent Cretaceous-Paleogene Extinction (65 million years ago).
  24. Los Volcanes Natural Park on the island of Lanzarote in Spain’s Canary Islands, off the northwest coast of Africa.
  25. The lunar eclipse on November 8 is a blood moon — meaning the moon will have a reddish hue. This happens when the moon is within the umbra. The moon takes on a reddish hue due to a phenomenon called Rayleigh scattering, which is the scattering of light by particles in a medium without a change in wavelength. This is also the reason why the sky appears blue. The moon turns red during the eclipse since the only sunlight reaching it is passing through the earth’s atmosphere. The sunlight scatters due to the dust or clouds in the atmosphere producing the red colour. 
  26. Medicines may soon have traces of ultramicroscopic gold powered by a super mushroom for greater efficacy. Cordy gold nanoparticles (Cor-AuNPs), the outcome of a collaborative experiment by scientists from four Indian institutions, has earned an international patent from Germany. These nanoparticles, derived from the synthesis of the extracts of Cordyceps militaris and gold salts, could make drug delivery in the human body faster and surer. Cordyceps militaris, called super mushroom because of its tremendous medicinal properties, adds bioactive components to the synthesis of gold nanoparticles for better penetration
  27. Astronomers have discovered the closest known black hole to Earth, just 1,600 light-years away. The black hole was initially identified using the European Space Agency’s Gaia spacecraft. The researchers are uncertain how the system formed in the Milky Way. Named Gaia BH1, it’s located in the constellation Ophiuchus.
  28. An international team of astronomers on Monday announced the discovery of a large asteroid whose orbit crosses that of Earth, creating a small chance far in the future of a catastrophic collision. The 1.5 kilometre-(0.9 mile-) wide asteroid, named 2022 AP7, was discovered in area notoriously difficult to spot objects due to the glare from the Sun. It was found along with two other near-Earth asteroids using a high-tech instrument on the Victor M. Blanco telescope in Chile that was originally developed to study dark matter. 2022 AP7 takes five years to circle the Sun under its current orbit, which at its closest point to Earth remain several million kilometres away.
  29. Caenorhabditis is a genus of nematodes which live in bacteria-rich environments like compost piles, decaying dead animals and rotting fruit. 
  30. The fungus, Pseudogymnoascus destructans, which causes white-nose syndrome. This fatal fungus is responsible for the deaths of over six million bats in North America. White-nose syndrome has been particularly devastating in Eastern Canada where it’s caused an over 90 per cent decline in populations of little brown myotis ( Myotis lucifugus) and northern myotis ( Myotis septentrionalis).
  31. Orthopaedics, who used to see one to three cases of avascular necrosis (AVN) a year, are now coming across one or two cases of AVN every day. This speaks volumes of the steep rise in AVN, which has no cure but, if diagnosed early, its progression could be slowed down.
  32. Plague-causing bacteria called Yersinia pestis travelled on the fleas of rats aboard ships heading towards the Mediterranean. From there, it rapidly spread inland and by 1350, it reached the edges of the European continent including Scotland, Scandinavia and the Baltic countries. Rough estimates show that the plague killed 25 million people across Europe.
  33. LVM3-M2 is the dedicated commercial satellite mission of NewSpace India Limited (NSIL), a Central Public Sector Enterprise (CPSE) under the Department of Space, Government of India. This mission is being undertaken as part of the commercial arrangement between NSIL and m/s Network Access Associates Limited (m/s OneWeb Ltd), a U.K. based company. OneWeb is a joint venture between India’s Bharti Enterprises and the U.K. government. LVM3 is a three-stage vehicle with two solid motor strap-ons, a liquid propellant core stage and a cryogenic stage. LVM3 was earlier called GSLV Mk III.
  34. RNA, or ribonucleic acid, is a single stranded nucleic acid akin to DNA that’s present in all cells and necessary for translating the genetic code into proteins. RNA origami is an attempt to generate complex human-made RNA-based devices that are stable in cells, interact with other biomolecules, including other RNA and proteins, and enable unique applications, particularly in the context of gene regulation. So far there have been two approaches in RNA origami and both attempt to regulate the production of protein.
  35. Oct 8, 2022 marked the 100th birth anniversary of a great Indian physicist G. N. Ramachandran, who is in the same league as physicists C.V. Raman, M.N. Saha and S.N. Bose. One of the important discoveries made by GNR, as he was known, was to unravel the structure of collagen – a substance that is found in bones, tendons etc and is the most abundant protein found in animals. By isolating collagen from shark ray, rat tail tendon and kangaroo tail tendon, GNR’s team identified for the first time that the large biomolecule has what GNR called a ‘coiled-coil’ structure and what was dubbed by other scientists a ‘triple helix’ structure.
  36. The DNA of ancient microorganisms estimated to be around a million years old have recently been found in the seafloor of the Scotia Sea near Antarctica.  Dubbed sedimentary ancient DNA or sedaDNA, this DNA comes from eukaryotes—organisms whose cells contain a nucleus and membrane-bound organelles. The group of scientists that conducted the study are unsure of the species of these organisms as eukaryotes include animals, plants, fungi and algae.
  37. Scientists from the Zoological Survey of India (ZSI), Kolkata found a new species of shrew on the island of Narcondam, a part of the Union Territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, and named it crocidura narcondamica (Scientific Reports, 2021). This shrew is found nowhere else. Narcondam is a small island and has a dormant volcano. Nearly all of it is densely forested. It is, therefore, heartening to know that the laboratories of the ZSI have published the mitochondrial genome sequence of another rare mammal endemic to the Nicobar Islands — the Nicobar treeshrew. Treeshrews are not really shrews; more closely resembling squirrels. They are considered to be promising models for the study of influenza H1N1 and Hepatitis virus infections.
  38. This gamma-ray burst, known as GRB 221009A, was first spotted by telescopes including NASA’s Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope, Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory, and Wind spacecraft.
  39. The communists came to power in China in 1949, with Mao declaring the birth of the new nation from Beijing’s Tiananmen Square.
  40. Dharavi is a mere stone’s throw from India’s richest business district, the Bandra-Kurla Complex, where commercial office premiums are among the highest in the country.
  41. Commemorating the day one of the most significant space missions to Mars was launched, November 28 is marked as Red Planet Day. On this day in 1964, the United States launched the space probe Mariner 4 on a course towards Mars, which it flew past in July 1965, sending back pictures of the red planet.
  42. NASA has a lander (Mars Insight), a rover (Curiosity), and three orbiters (Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, Mars Odyssey, MAVEN); India has an orbiter (Mangalyaan-1); the EU has 2 orbiters (Mars Express and ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter); and China and UAE will have an orbiter each (Hope and Tianwen-1 respectively).
  43. The Chief Guest for the 2023 Republic Day parade, Abdeh Fatah al-Sisi was Egypt’s military chief and defence minister before he took over control from democratically elected Md Morsi after a coup in 2013. The first Chief Guest of the parade in 1950 was President Sukarno of Indonesia, one of the five founding members of the NAM alongside Nasser (Egypt), Nkrumah (Ghana), Tito (Yugoslavia) and Nehru (India). Al-Sisi’s invitation invokes the history of the NAM and the close relationship India and Egypt have shared for 75 years. This marks the first time that a leader from Egypt will be the chief guest.
  44. By law, RTIs must be replied to within 30 days. In fact, in life and death cases, RTIs must be responded to within 48 hours.
  45. The area around Rajgir (in Nalanda district), which was the nucleus of the ancient kingdom of Magadh and is associated with the founders of both Buddhism and Jainism, is rocky and water-deficient.
  46. The word is kaitiakitanga, which is derived from the Maori language in which a kaitiaki is a guardian. The Maori people believe that there is a deep kinship between humans and the natural world. This connection is expressed through kaitiakitanga, a way of managing the environment.
  47. 73 years ago, the Constitution of India was adopted, coming into effect on January 26, 1950. Since 2015, the day has been observed as Constitution Day, or ‘Samvidhan Diwas’. The Constituent Assembly took two years, 11 months and 17 days to draft the Constitution for Independent India. During this period, it held 11 sessions covering 165 days, and its members submitted around 7,600 amendments to the draft Constitution.
  48. Express Entry’ (EE) is a unique and a quick way to permanent residence for immigrants seeking a new life in Canada. EE plays a vital role in managing the immigrant inflow to the North American country judging through certain various parameters.
  49. Currently, Great Britain includes the island that consists of Scotland in the north, England in the middle and north, and the region of Wales in the West. Along with these, northern Ireland forms the United Kingdom, a political union of nations. But all these regions enjoy different kinds of relationships with the union as a whole. The nations of Britain have shared the same monarch since 1603, when King James VI of Scotland became James I of England. In 1707, a formal union created the Kingdom of Great Britain.
  50. India is not a signatory to the 1951 United Nations Refugee Convention or its 1962 Protocol, and does not have a domestic policy on refugees.
  51. The Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) is an impoverished hilly, forested area that sprawls over more than 13,000 sq km of the Khagrachari, Rangamati, and Bandarban districts of southeastern Bangladesh, bordering Mizoram to the east, Tripura to the north, and Myanmar to the south and southeast. A significant portion of the population is tribal, and culturally and ethnically different from the majority Muslim Bangladeshis who live in the country’s deltaic mainland. The tribal population of the CHT has ethnic links with tribal populations in the adjacent areas of India, mainly in Mizoram. Mizoram shares a 318-km-long border with Bangladesh. The KNF claims all members of the Bawm, Pungkhua, Lushai, Khumi, Mro, and Khyang ethnic groups belong to a greater Kuki-Chin race.
  52. A fault is a place with a long break in the rock that forms the surface of the earth. When an earthquake occurs on one of these faults, the rock on one side of the fault slips with respect to the other.
  53. Indian wildlife biologist Dr Purnima Devi Barman was recently awarded with Champions of the Earth award in the Entrepreneurial vision category, UN’s highest environmental honour. She is the founder of the Hargila Army and senior project manager of the Avifauna Research and Conservation Division, Aaranyak. The Champions of the Earth is an appreciation for innovative ways implemented by the awardees across the world to support nature’s extraordinary capacity for renewal. She assembled a group of village women to help her and named the group as the ‘Hargila Army’ after the stork, known as ‘hargila‘ in Assamese (meaning ‘bone swallower’).
  54. The greater adjutant stork is the second-rarest stork species in the world. Their population has dropped to 1,200 today, less than 1 per cent of what they numbered a century ago, due to the destruction of their natural habitat.
  55. Tipu is credited for the introduction of iron-cased rockets in warfare. While rocket-like weapons had previously been used in War, Tipu’s army used what can be termed as the first modern war rockets in the Anglo Mysore Wars (though some sources say that it was his father Hyder Ali who introduced these and Tipu only improved upon existing models). These rockets were used to devastating effects against much larger British armies, driving them to panic and disarray. The British used Tipu’s models for their own rockets, which would go on to play an important role in the Napoleonic Wars.
  56. Writing off a loan essentially means it will no longer be counted as an asset. By writing off loans, a bank can reduce the level of non-performing assets (NPAs) on its books. An additional benefit is that the amount so written off reduces the bank’s tax liability. The bank writes off a loan after the borrower has defaulted on the loan repayment and there is a very low chance of recovery. The lender then moves the defaulted loan, or NPA, out of the assets side and reports the amount as a loss. After the write-off, banks are supposed to continue their efforts to recover the loan using various options. They have to make provisioning as well. The tax liability will also come down as the written-off amount is reduced from the profit.
  57. New Zealand’s Supreme Court granted an appeal that sought lowering of the voting age to 16, forcing parliament to discuss the case. Voting age in New Zealand was previously lowered from 21 to 20 in 1969, and then to 18 in 1974.
  58. Water levels in Europe’s biggest rivers – Rhine, Po, Loire, and Danube – shrunk, and dry conditions continue to prevail in different parts of the continent.
  59. Baliyatra, literally ‘voyage to Bali’, is one of the country’s largest open-air fairs, which is organised every year to commemorate the 2,000-year-old maritime and cultural links between ancient Kalinga (today’s Odisha) and Bali and other South and Southeast Asian regions like Java, Sumatra, Borneo, Burma (Myanmar) and Ceylon (Sri Lanka).
  60. India will host the Third No Money for Terror (NMFT) Conference on November 18-19. Delegates from 75 countries and international bodies are expected to attend the event, which will take up ways to combat global terrorist financing.
  61. In Europe, Russia shares a border with Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Belarus, Ukraine, and Georgia. Of this, apart from Belarus and Ukraine, the others have either joined NATO or are in queue for a membership.
  62. The district consumer disputes redressal forum in Gurgaon ordered the Municipal Corporation of Gurugram (MCG) to ban pet dogs of 11 foreign breeds. These are American Pit-bull Terriers, Dogo Argentino, Rottweiller, Neapolitan Mastiff, Boerboel, Presa Canario, Wolf Dog, Bandog, American Bulldog, Fila Brasileiro and Cane Corso. A Dogo Argentino — like many others in the banned list — is a hunting dog. The Dogo Argentino is a pack-hunting dog, bred for the pursuit of big-game such as wild boar and puma, and possesses the strength, intelligence and quick responsiveness of a serious athlete. His expression is alert and intelligent, with a marked hardness. The Dogo is instantly identifiable by his short, completely white coat.
  63. The government has appointed senior economist Dr Arvind Virmani as a full-time member of the NITI Aayog. The NITI Aayog, the government’s premier think tank headed by the Prime Minister, at present has three members — Dr V K Saraswat, Professor Ramesh Chand and Dr V K Paul. Virmani has been appointed the NITI Aayog member with “immediate effect”.
  64. On the occasion of the birth anniversary of tribal leader Birsa Munda, the Centre marked the second Janjatiya Gaurav Divas on November 15 to celebrate the contributions of tribal communities to Indian culture.
  65. The Collins Dictionary’s word of the year for 2022 is “permacrisis”. As accolades go, the managing director of Collins Learning, Alex Beecroft, has said that this one “sums up quite succinctly how truly awful 2022 has been for so many people”.
  66. Islamic banking refers to banking activity that conforms to laws and values laid down by Islamic law or Sharia. The basis of Islamic finance is the rejection of usury (the levying of unreasonable high interest rates) while lending money, along with the requirement that there must not be any engagement with immoral businesses. Interest free banking is a narrow concept within this system, that denotes a number of banking operations which avoid interest. Riba is the Islamic term for interest charges on loans, and according to the current interpretation, covers all interest — not just excessive interest. Under Islamic law, a Muslim is prohibited from paying and accepting interest on a predetermined rate. As per Islamic banking, money can only be parked in a bank without interest and cannot be used for speculative trading, gambling, or trading in prohibited commodities such as alcohol or pork.
  67. The shuttle mission, which was NASA’s 25th, was supposed to be a six-day mission wherein, the seven-member crew was to deploy a large communications satellite, deploy and retrieve an astronomy payload to study Halley’s Comet. The primary objective of the STS-51L mission was to launch the second Tracking and Data Relay System (TDRS) satellite into orbit.
  68. The “Bhavani” sword, now in Satara, was also used by Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, who had at least three swords. But this sword is different from the one in London, which is called “Jagdamba” in the catalogue of Chhatrapati of Karveer.
  69. On November 9, 2000, Uttarakhand became India’s 27th state, carved out of the hilly regions of undivided Uttar Pradesh.
  70. Amid the high-stakes midterm election in the United States, Indian-American politician Aruna Miller scripted history  by becoming the first immigrant to hold the office of the Lieutenant Governor in the state of Maryland.
  71. The Greenhouse Gas Protocol, which “provides the world’s most widely used GHG accounting standards”, to calculate the carbon footprint of these companies. 
  72. China currently relies on the Long March 5B to carry its heaviest payloads to space. The rocket has a big central booster and four smaller boosters on the side, which drop off some time after lift-off. The core booster stage, however, goes to orbit. For the latest mission, the rocket carried Mengtian, a science laboratory module, to Tiangong. The space station is smaller than the International Space Station, but it will establish a more permanent base in space than China’s earlier space stations.
  73. The 125th birth anniversary of Edavalath Kakkat Janaki Ammal, a pioneering botanist and the first Indian woman to be awarded a PhD in the botanical sciences. Janaki Ammal is known widely for her contributions to science – in the field of genetics, cytology, evolution, and more. Her work as a geneticist took her to the Sugarcane Breeding Institute at Coimbatore in Tamil Nadu from 1934 to 1939.
  74. Announced during COP26, the International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) was set up to establish baseline standards for the reporting of environmental data from companies globally, amid complaints from investors and companies that disclosures were hard to compare.
  75. Launched ahead of last year’s U.N. talks, the Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero – known by its acronym GFANZ – acts as the umbrella group for financial services firms looking to reach net-zero emissions across their portfolios. The group now counts more than 550 members, including most of the world’s leading banks, insurers and asset managers, with collective assets of more than $150 trillion. Since joining, 118 asset managers, 44 asset owners and 53 banks have set shorter-term targets to cut emissions, and more are expected to do so in coming months. GFANZ, led by former Bank of England governor Mark Carney, also launched a series of projects to accelerate change in the real economy, including those helping to set standards and frameworks for disclosure and setting targets.
  76. Launched at the COP26 Glasgow Climate Change Conference, the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance (BOGA) is an international alliance of governments and stakeholders working together to facilitate the managed phase-out of oil and gas production. Led by the governments of Denmark and Costa Rica, the alliance aims to elevate the issue of oil and gas production phase-out in international climate dialogues, mobilize action and commitments, and create an international community of practice on this issue. BOGA is co-chaired by the governments of Denmark and Costa Rica. India has been singled out for its resistance to international pressure on coal. BOGA members are agreeing to two key things: first, to end the licensing of new oil and gas fields. Second, to set an end-date for existing oil and gas production, consistent with no more than 1.5°C of average global temperature change. While BOGA’s eleven founding members are not the world’s largest oil and gas producers, BOGA is intended to be a group of “first movers” — high-ambition countries who seek to lead by example.
  77. These are regions on the sun’s surface from where fast solar wind gushes out into space. Because they contain little solar material, they have lower temperatures and thus appear much darker than their surroundings. Here, the magnetic field is open to interplanetary space, sending solar material out in a high-speed stream of solar wind. Coronal holes can last between a few weeks to months. The holes are not a unique phenomenon, appearing throughout the sun’s approximately 11-year solar cycle. They can last much longer during solar minimum – a period of time when activity on the Sun is substantially diminished.
  78. CANSO – the Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation – is the global voice of the air traffic management (ATM) industry and is shaping our future skies. Its members support over 90% of the world’s air traffic and include air navigation service providers, airspace users and operators, manufacturers and aviation industry suppliers. The organization looks on global Air Traffic Management performance by connecting the industry to share knowledge, expertise and innovation.
  79. India Post Payments Bank (IPPB), stablished under the Department of Posts, Ministry of Communication with 100% equity owned by the Government of India, conducted India’s First Floating Financial Literacy Camp with an initiative called ‘Niveshak Didi’ to promote Financial Literacy ‘By the women, for the women’, in Srinagar, J&K.
  80. The 11th edition of the annual Joint Military Training (JMT) between the Indian Air Force (lAF) and the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) commenced at Air Force Station, Kalaikunda. 
  81. The National Florence Nightingale Awards were instituted in the year 1973 by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India as a mark of recognition for the meritorious services rendered by the nurses and nursing professionals to the society.
  82. The UNCCD’s goal of land degradation neutrality (LDN) can halt, and then reverse, this alarming picture of the future. ​We are already helping 129 of the world’s 196 countries that have pledged (or are aiming) to arrest land degradation by 2030. ​More than 100 countries participate in the Changwon Initiative, which supports national voluntary target setting processes to achieve land degradation neutrality (LDN). We define LDN as “a state whereby the amount and quality of land resources necessary to support ecosystem functions and services to enhance food security remain stable, or increase, within specified temporal and spatial scales and ecosystems.”​
  83. The ongoing Ex Garuda VII between Indian Air Force (IAF) and French Air and Space Force (FASF) witnessed combined flying by Chief of the Air Staff (CAS) of IAF.
  84. The Transport4All Challenge is an initiative of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India, that aims at enhancing the mobility experience of citizens. The Challenge focuses on digital innovation and invites cities, citizens, and innovators to join hands to develop contextual digital solutions to improve formal as well as informal public transport to better serve the mobility needs of all citizens.
  85. India hosted the Second Agriculture Ministerial-level meeting of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC). The 2nd BIMSTEC Agriculture Ministerial Meeting adopted the Action Plan for Strengthening BIMSTEC Agricultural Cooperation (2023-2027). BIMSTEC was established in the year 1997. It includes five countries of South Asia – Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and two countries of South-East Asia – Myanmar and Thailand.
  86. Dattopant Thengadi National Board for Workers Education and Development (DTNBWED) is an autonomous body under the Ministry of Labour & Employment, Government of India. It is registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860. Started in 1958, the Workers Education Scheme in India has been playing a very significant role in our national development; the Scheme of Workers Education aims to create and increase awareness and educate workforce for their effective participation in the socio-economic development of the country. To achieve these objectives, various training programmes are conducted by the Board for the workers of formal and informal sectors at national, regional and unit levels through a network of 50 Regional and 09 Sub-Regional Directorates spread all over the country and an apex Training Institute viz. Indian Institute of Workers Education (IIWE) at Mumbai.
  87. The OECD/G20 Inclusive Framework on BEPS published the Global Anti-Base Erosion (GloBE) Rules as part of a landmark agreement on a two-pillar solution to reform the international tax framework in response to the challenges of digitalisation of the economy. Once implemented into domestic law, the GloBE Rules will provide a co-ordinated system to ensure that Multinational Enterprises (MNEs) with revenues above EUR 750 million pay at least a minimum level of tax – at 15% – on the income arising in each of the jurisdictions in which they operate.
  88. The 18th edition of Indo – US joint training exercise “YUDH ABHYAS 22” is scheduled to be conducted in Uttarakhand. Exercise Yudh Abhyas is conducted annually between India and USA with the aim of exchanging best practices, Tactics, Techniques and Procedures between the Armies of the two nations. The previous edition of the exercise was conducted at Joint Base Elmendorf Richardson, Alaska (USA) in October 2021.
  89. The Nature Conservancy (TNC) is the leading conservation organization working to make a positive impact around the world in more than 76 countries and territories. Founded in 1951, the mission of The Nature Conservancy is to conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends.
  90. The Leadership Group for Industry Transition (LeadIT) gathers countries and companies that are committed to action to achieve the Paris Agreement. It was launched by the governments of Sweden and India at the UN Climate Action Summit in September 2019 and is supported by the World Economic Forum. LeadIT members subscribe to the notion that energy-intensive industry can and must progress on low-carbon pathways, aiming to achieve net-zero carbon emissions.
  91. The Press Council of India celebrated the National Press Day on the theme “The Media’s Role in Nation Building” at SCOPE convention centre in New Delhi . National Press Day – the 16th of November – is symbolic of a free and responsible press in India. This was the day on which the Press Council of India started functioning as a moral watchdog to ensure that not only did the press maintain the high standards expected from this powerful medium but also that it was not fettered by the influence or threats of any extraneous factors. Though there are several Press or Media Councils world over, the Press Council of India is a unique entity in as much as this is the only body to exercise an authority even over the instruments of the State in its duty to safeguard the independence of the press.
  92. India-Norway is part of Green Voyage 2050 project, both parties agreed on willingness, devotion, partnership and capacity building for achieving common goals. India is a signatory to Hongkong Convention for Recycling of Ships.
  93. World Fisheries Day is celebrated on 21st November every year to demonstrate solidarity with all fisher folk, fish farmers and concerned stakeholders throughout the world. It started in 1997 where “World Forum of Fish Harvesters & Fish Workers” met at New Delhi leading to formation of “World Fisheries Forum” with representatives from 18 countries and signed a declaration advocating for a global mandate of sustainable fishing practices and policies. The event aims to draw attention to overfishing, habitat destruction and other serious threats to the sustainability of our marine and freshwater resources. The celebrations serve to focus on changing the way the world manages global fisheries to ensure sustainable stocks and healthy ecosystem.
  94. Geo-Portal for NCR known as ‘PARIMAN’. This Geo-Portal will help to improve decentralized planning and management in NCR region. The Portal consists of around 179 Layers presented as Line, Point & Polygon feature covering details of various sectors like Land Use, Transport, Industries, Water, Power, Health, Shelter, Heritage & Tourism, Disaster Management, etc.
  95. The United Nations Country Team (UNCT) exists in 132 countries, covering all of the 162 countries where there are United Nations programmes. The UNCT includes all the UN entities working on sustainable development, emergency, recovery and transition in programme countries. The UNCT is led by the UN Resident Coordinator, who is the representative of the UN Secretary-General in a given country. The UNCT ensures interagency coordination and decision-making at the country level. The goal is to plan and work together, as part of the Resident Coordinator system, to ensure the delivery of tangible results in support of the development agenda of the Government, including the UN Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework which guides the UN country team’s development programme cycle, in joint agreement with the host government.
  96. India wins the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) Vice Presidency and Strategic Management Board (SMB) Chair for the 2023-25 term. Currently, Bureau of Indian Standards-BIS (India) is represented in various policy and governance bodies of International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and IEC such as ISO Council, ISO Technical Management Board (TMB), IEC SMB, IEC Market Strategy Board (MSB), IEC Business Advisory Committee (BAC), etc.
  97. In a unique and first-of-its-kind initiative, the Department of Science & Technology (DST), Govt of India, has undertaken to set up India’s first-ever “Night Sky Sanctuary” in Ladakh. The proposed Dark Sky Reserve will be located at Hanle in Ladakh as a part of Changthang Wildlife Sanctuary. It will boost Astro tourism in India and will be one of the world’s highest-located sites for optical, infra-red, and gamma-ray telescopes.
  98. International Jaguar Day was created to raise awareness about the increasing threats facing the jaguar and the critical conservation efforts ensuring its survival. Observed annually on November 29, International Jaguar Day celebrates the Americas’ largest wild cat as an umbrella species for biodiversity conservation and an icon for sustainable development and the centuries-old cultural heritage of Central and South America. This is the third largest Cat Predator of the World and an important species of Amazon Rainforest.
  99. The Annual Joint HADR Exercise ‘Samanvay 2022’ was conducted by the IAF at Air Force Station, Agra. Various stakeholders from the country and representatives from ASEAN member countries participated in the exercise.  
  100. Shakya Gasan, chief monk of the World Buddhist Pope Association of South Korea, will lay the foundation stone for the International Buddhist University at Manu Bankul in Sabroom of South Tripura district. The Dhamma Dipa International Buddhist University (DDIBU) is expected to become the first Buddhist-run university in India to offer Buddhist education along with courses in other disciplines of modern education as well.
  101. Important Buddhist Mudras: Dhyani Mudra, (gesture of meditation), Vitarka Mudra, (teaching gesture), Dharmachakra Mudra, (gesture of turning the wheel of the teaching), Bhumisparsha Mudra, (gesture of touching the earth), Abhaya Mudra, (gesture of fearlessness and granting protection), Varada Mudra, (gesture of granting wishes), Uttarabodhi Mudra, (gesture of supreme enlightenment), Anjali Mudra, (gesture of greeting and veneration) and Vijrapradama Mudra, (gesture of unshakable confidence)
  102. TipuSultan was adept in the art of warfare, having been involved in his first battle at the age of 15. Tipu also patronised various temples and Hindu shrines, including the Sri Ranganatha temple at Srirangapatna and the Math in Sringeri. He introduced new coins, started a new land revenue system in Mysore, as well as introduced sericulture, which continues to employ many Kannadigas to date.
  103. Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park is a national park of India on the Andaman Islands. It belongs to the South Andaman administrative district, part of the Indian union territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands. There are 2 major island groups in the park: the Labyrinth Islands and the Twin Islands.
  104. Phosphine gas is generally toxic with a garlic-like smell and is found in the bodies of living beings on earth. It is quite impossible to produce artificially. Its hazardous ramifications are such that, it’s used by terrorists as a chemical agent in warfare.
  105. According to the  International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism, a person commits the crime of financing of terrorism “if that person by any means, directly or indirectly, unlawfully and willfully, provides or collects funds with the intention that they should be used or in the knowledge that they are to be used, in full or in part, in order to carry out” an offense within the scope of the Convention.
  106. The Agricultural Market Information System (AMIS) is an inter-agency platform to enhance food market transparency and encourage international policy coordination in times of crisis. It was established at the request of the Group of Twenty (G20) in 2011. Countries participating in AMIS encompass the main producing and consuming countries of major food crops covered by the initiative: wheat, maize, rice and soybeans. AMIS is hosted by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in Rome/Italy and supported by a joint Secretariat, which currently (September 2016) consists of eleven international organizations and entities. 
  107. The Common Carbon Metric (CCM), developed by UNEP’s Sustainable Buildings and Climate Initiative, is to be considered by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), the world’s largest developer and publisher of international standards, the UN agency said in a press release. The CCM is intended to create a uniform system for defining the climate impact of buildings through a consistent protocol, which can, in turn, help develop international baselines for use by architects, designers and the construction industry. First launched during the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen in 2009, the CCM measures both energy use and greenhouse gas emissions equivalent in buildings per metre squared or per occupant over the course of one year. It contains two approaches – a “top-down” model, which takes measurements from a collection of buildings, or a “bottom-up” model, which is applied to an individual building.
  108. The Partnership for Healthy Citiesis a prestigious global network of cities committed to saving lives by preventing noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) and injuries. Supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies in partnership with the World Health Organization and Vital Strategies, this initiative enables cities around the world to deliver a high-impact policy or programmatic intervention to reduce NCDs and injuries in their communities.
  109. The Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC) is the statutory committee constituted under the “Rules for the Manufacture, Use/Import/Export and Storage of Hazardous Micro Organisms/Genetically Engineered Organisms or Cells (Rules, 1989)” framed under Environment (Protection) Act, 1986. Clearance of Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC) is mandatory for the environmental release of Genetically Modified (GM) crops. 
  110. The Greater Nicobar island is occupied by the Shompen and Nicobarese tribes. The project area falls near two national parks – Galathea Bay National Park and Campbell Bay National Park. The Greater Nicobar region is home to leatherback sea turtles and other important species such as Nicobar macaque, Nicobar megapode and saltwater crocodiles and rare and endemic plant species such as tree ferns and orchids.
  111. E-rupee is the same as a fiat currency and is exchangeable one-to-one with the fiat currency. Only its form is different. It can be accepted as a medium of payment, legal tender and a safe store of value. The digital rupee would appear as liability on a central bank’s balance sheet. A token-based e-rupee is viewed as a preferred mode for retail e-rupee as it would be closer to physical cash. A token-based CBDC would be a bearer instrument like banknotes, meaning whosoever holds the tokens at a given point in time would be presumed to own them.
  112. Prime Minister is the ex-officio Chairmanof the PM CARES Fund and Minister of Defence, Minister of Home Affairs and Minister of Finance, Government of India are ex-officio Trustees of the Fund. The Chairperson of the Board of Trustees (Prime Minister) shall have the power to nominate three trustees to the Board of Trustees who shall be eminent persons in the field of research, health, science, social work, law, public administration and philanthropy. Any person appointed a Trustee shall act in a pro bono capacity. Donations to PM CARES Fund would qualify for 80G benefits for 100% exemption under the Income Tax Act, 1961. Donations to PM CARES Fund will also qualify to be counted as Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) expenditure under the Companies Act, 2013.
  113. Colliery refers to any mine or opening working where extraction of coal is the primary objective of the mining and it also includes plants producing coke or washing coal.
  114. Pastoral communities in Himachal Pradesh of Chamba forest area is home to one-third of the total cattle population of the state and hundreds of Gaddiand Gujjar families practise transhumance or seasonal migration for grazing sheep, goats and buffaloes for their livelihood. Chamba is said to have one of the highest numbers of the Gujjar shepherd community in Himachal Pradesh. 
  115. The 30X30 target was first floated in 2019 in an article A Global Deal for Nature: Guiding principles, milestones, and targetspublished in Science Advances. This then became the global call of the High Ambition Coalition for Nature and People in 2020 and as of October 2022, more than 100 countries are part of it.
  116. Methane is approximately 80 times warmer than carbon dioxide in the first 20 years of its presence in the atmosphere.
  117. The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) released its first State of Global Water Resources 2021 in order to assess the effects of climate, environmental and societal change on the Earth’s water resources.
  118. Rift zones are areas that have weak cracks, allowing magma to push against the rock above, making its way to the surface and flowing downhill.
  119. The energy returned on energy invested (EROI) is a ratio that measures the energy used to produce another energy source against the actual energy generated from that new source.
  120. Indore has Asia’s largest bio-CNG plant from city waste. The plant is located in Devguradiya village on the outskirts of the city. 
  121. Indigenous communities of South Africa: San and Khoi communities.
  122. The mountain bush rooibos is endemic to South Africa and is used to prepare a deep red brew with a deliciously unique flavour. Rooibos, devoid of caffeine and low in tannins, is a healthy alternative to coffee or tea. It also comes loaded with antioxidants that can boost immunity, reduce risks of heart diseases, protect from viral infection and has anti-ageing properties.
  123. Multinational corporations have come up with ways to profit from the tea as well as products made using chemical derivatives of the shrub, called Aspalathus linearisin scientific lexicon.
  124. The 19th Conference of Parties (COP19) to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) has maintained the national wood of Brazil, Brazilwood or Paubrasilia echinata,in Appendix II with changes in annotations. The items under Appendix II may not necessarily be threatened with extinction, but the trade of such species should be controlled to ensure it does not threaten their existence.
  125. The main recharge zone of the Naini lake is Sukhatal, a seasonal lake situated 50 metres above it. It is believed that Sukhatal is a feeder lake for Naini Lake, as it acts as upstream storage for Naini Lake during monsoon by holding the runoff from catchment of water that would have otherwise flown out, thereby increasing erosion and silt deposition in Naini Lake. It was earlier known as Khudariya Tal and was renamed as Sukha Tal because the entire water from this lake was drained in the extreme region of the Nainital Lake.
  126. The Kuroshio Current is one of the major ocean currents. It begins east of the Philippines then flows in a northeastward direction past Taiwan and Japan. It forms the western side of the clockwise North Pacific Ocean gyre. The surface waters of the Kuroshio Current are warm and salty. This is because the Kuroshio starts in the tropics where the westward flowing North Equatorial Current reaches the western boundary of the North Pacific.
  127. Among the investigated bacteria, five leading pathogens — staphylococcus aureus, escherichia coli, streptococcus pneumoniae, klebsiella pneumoniae and pseudomonas aeruginosa— were responsible for 54.9 per cent of deaths. S aureus was the leading bacterial cause of death in 135 countries and was also associated with the most deaths in individuals older than 15 years globally. Among children younger than five years, S pneumoniae was the pathogen associated with the most deaths. 
  128. Every year November 18-24 is observed as World Antimicrobial Awareness Week(WAAW). Global estimates showed that in 2019, nearly five million human deaths worldwide were associated with bacterial antimicrobial resistance, of which 1.3 million human deaths were directly attributable to bacterial AMR.  This year the AMR Multi-stakeholder Partnership Platform was established November 18 to mark the beginning of WAAW.
  129. Leaders in the governments of Afghanistan, Bhutan, China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, the Russian Federation, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan, the custodians of the world’s snow leopards and the valuable high-mountain ecosystems they inhabit, having gathered at a Global Snow Leopard Conservation Forum in Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic, from 22-23 October 2013, with the shared goal of conserving snow leopards and their fragile habitats.
  130. Big Cats Species: cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus), mainland clouded leopard (Neofelis nebulosa), Sunda clouded leopard (Neofelis diardi), lion (Panthera leo), jaguar (Panthera onca), leopard (Panthera pardus), tiger (Panthera tigris) and snow leopard (Panthera uncia).
  131. One unique case that explains how communities fail is that of the Kakamega Natural Forest Catchment Conservation Organisation (KANFCCO). This conservation group works to save Kakamega Forest, a tropical rainforest in Western Kenya with a major focus on the Mondia whitei,locally known as Mokombero. Mondia whitei’s roots are used to treat multiple diseases, including sexual disorders. In 2021, the group signed a deal with a French company for the supply of 100 tonnes of root per year.
  132. The Wildlife Justice Commission (WJC), a non-profit based in The Hague, the Netherlands. brought out To skin a cat: how organised crime capitalises and exploits captive tiger facilities. The organisation operates globally with the mission to disrupt and help dismantle organised transnational criminal networks trading in wildlife, timber and fish. 
  133. Nagoya Protocol is an offshoot of the Convention on Biological Diversity which specifically deals with fair and equitable benefit sharing resulting from access to biodiversity. 
  134. Echinops giganteusis a plant that is used worldwide in the cosmetics and food industries. The plant is grown mostly in the wild. This plant, which is endangered, is traditionally used to treat various ailments such as anorexia, stress, bilharzia and sexual dysfunction, as well as for general aches and pains. The plant is also used as a food flavouring agent due to its vanilla-like odour. It tastes like a mixture of liquorice and ginger.
  135. The pangolin is ‘the most trafficked animal in the world’. Pangolins are listed in Appendix I of CITES in accordance with the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s Red List. This means that the species is threatened with extinction. There are eight species of pangolins in the world of which the Indian Pangolin (Manis crassicaudata) and the Chinese Pangolin (Manis pentadactyla) are found in India.
  136. Provisional State of the Global Climate in 2022 report by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).
  137. Axolotl, a Mexican endemic salamander that can grow back its limbs and organs. 
  138. The Zamora River and the Coangos River, tributaries of the Santiago River located in the south-east of Ecuador.
  139. Shuar Arutam: An indigenous community of Ecuador has had a historic win in their fightto save the Amazon, with a constitutional court recognising the community’s rights to choose which activities happen on their territories. 
  140. Phthalates or phthalic acid esters (PAES), which fall in the plastics category, are typically used “to make the material softer and more flexible, increase plasticity, reduce viscosity, or reduce friction during manufacturing.” In sanitary pads, its primary role is to improve elasticity and gel properties.
  141. European eel is found in the continent’s freshwaters and estuarine habitats. It has been listed as ‘critically endangered’ in the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species and Appendix II of CITES. The category includes species not necessarily threatened with extinction, but in which trade must be controlled in order to avoid utilisation incompatible with their survival.
  142. The 19th Conference of the Parties (COP19) of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in Panama City voted to limit or regulate trade in nearly 100 species of sharks and rays. This means that nearly all species of sharks hunted for their fins to be used for shark fin soup, a delicacy in Asian cuisine, are now CITES control. 
  143. Artemisinin and its derivatives, isolated from the plant artemisia annua, are potent medications renowned for their quick reduction of Plasmodium parasite counts in the blood of malaria patients. Artemisinin compounds lessen the number of parasites during the first three days of treatment. The partner drug’s role is to eliminate the remaining parasites and treat the infection.
  144. The Global Methane Assessment: 2030 Baseline Reportwas launched at the Climate and Clean Air Ministerial Meeting at 27th Conference of Parties (COP27) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. 
  145. The Global Methane Pledge was announced last year at CoP26. The goal is to slash global methane emissions by at least 30 per cent from 2020 levels by 2030.
  146. The Global Methane Hub, a philanthropic fund to support methane mitigation, has raised $70 million to support critical research on reducing methane emissions from enteric fermentation — the largest single source of methane emissions from agriculture. The Hub will focus on the energy, agricultural, and waste sectors which account for 96% of human-caused methane emissions.
  147. Tana County, Kenya and Zambezi valley in Zimbabwe.
  148. The International Indigenous Peoples Forum on Climate Change (IIPFCC) was established in 2008, as the Caucus for IPs participating in the UNFCCC The IIPFCC represents the IP Caucus members who are present/attending the official UNFCCC COPsand intersessional sessions of the SBSTA/SBI bodies in between COPs. Its mandate is to come into agreement specifically on what IPs will be negotiating for in specific UNFCCC processes. IP representatives attending the meetings have their own organizations at subnational, national and global levels which have their own agenda, priorities and own proposals that they may carry and push for during the IP Caucus meetings. Indigenous peoples began engaging with the UNFCCC in 2000.
  149. The Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF) was created in 2001 to address the specific needs of developing countries under the UNFCCC to adapt to the impact of climate change and increase resilience. It covers the incremental costs of interventions to address climate change adaptation relative to a development baseline. The SCCF is intended to catalyse and leverage additional finance from bilateral and multilateral sources, and is administered as a specialised trust fund by the Global Environment Facility (GEF). The World Bank is the permanent trustee.
  150. In 2001, the 194 parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change(UNFCCC) set out to address this challenge by establishing the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF) – the only facility exclusively dedicated to helping these countries adapt to new climate realities. The LDCF, along with the Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF), is mandated to serve the Paris Agreement. Both funds are managed by the Global Environment Facility.
  151. To build a connected livestock disease programme that can integrate wildlife and human disease to inform about the movements and control of zoonotic diseases, the Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying in 2020 launched the National Digital Livestock Mission (NDLM). It aims to tag all the 500 million major livestock in the country with a unique 12-digit identification (ID) number, just like the Aadhaar card for people.
  152. Zoonotic diseases: anthrax (highly infectious bacterial illness that can affect a person’s skin, lungs or intestine when they come in contact with infected animals, eat contaminated meat or inhale the bacteria spores); babesiosis (a life-threatening parasitic disease that can transmit to humans via tick bite, blood transfusion or from an infected mother to her baby); fasciolosis (a parasitic worm infection that is acquired by eating contaminated watercress or other water plants); and trypansomosis or sleeping sickness (a parasitic disease that causes fever, fatigue, dullness and swollen lymohnodes and is transmitted by tsetse flies).
  153. In 2013, Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome, a viral disease that affects pigs, entered India from China and Myanmar through porous borders of the Northeast.
  154. Rift Valley fever, a mosquito-borne viral infection that causes increased abortion and perinatal mortality in sheep, goats, cattle, buffaloes and camels, after periods of above-normal precipitation.
  155. The lumpy skin disease virus is a poxvirus that belongs to the same genus as sheep pox and goat pox viruses. It spreads through blood-sucking insects like mosquitoes, flies and ticks as well as through saliva and contaminated water and food. The genome for poxvirus is very large. If the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19 has about 30,000 nucleotides (building blocks of DNA), the poxvirus has 1,51,000.
  156. The Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) results in below-average sea surface temperatures at a western pole in the Arabian Sea and above-average sea surface at an eastern pole in the eastern Indian Ocean south of Indonesia. It is characterised by a difference in sea surface temperatures between the western and eastern Indian Oceans. 
  157. A carbon credit is a special permit that gives the user or buyer express rights to emit a given amount of carbon dioxide or other greenhouse gases. Carbon credits trading is one of the many technical interventions used to reduce the amount or concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.
  158. The Nordic Development Fund, along with the WMO, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP), launched a systematic observations financing facility. The facility will help fill the gaps in weather and climate data for least developed countries (LDC) and small island developing states (SIDS).
  159. The Arab Coordination Group (ACG), a strategic alliance of financial institutions that provide a coordinated response to development finance, pledged to provide $24 billion of climate action financing by 2030.
  160. Biochar is a charcoal-like substance that burns organic material (biomass) from agricultural and forestry wastes in a controlled process called pyrolysis. Although it looks much like ordinary charcoal, biochar has safely reduced contamination and stored carbon. 
  161. The Environmental Integrity Group (EIG) is a negotiation group consisting of 6 parties to the UNFCCC. When it was formed in 2000, it only consisted of Switzerland, Korea, and Mexico. The Environmental Integrity Group was initiated by Switzerland during the negotiations of the Kyoto Protocol, where only party groups were allowed to negotiate. Switzerland was not part of any group and they did not want to join the Umbrella Group. Members of the group-Mexico, Liechtenstein, Monaco, the Republic of Korea, Switzerland and Georgia.
  162. The Umbrella Group is a coalition of Parties which formed following the adoption of the Kyoto Protocol. The Group is made up of Australia, Canada, Iceland, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, Kazakhstan, Norway, Ukraine and the United States.
  163. The establishment of a new collective quantified goal on climate finance (NCQG) presents one of the most critical and pivotal opportunities to accelerate global climate action. As global temperatures continues to rise due to anthropogenic greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and climate change impacts worsen, the urgency, importance, and implications of this imperative grows with each passing day. The intent of the NCQG is at the bare minimum for developed nations to provide developing countries with the necessary funding to address adaptation and mitigation gaps. Not counting domestic public finance from being prevents developed countries from overstating progress made as part of this new finance goal. Parties decided that, prior to 2025, the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement (CMA) shall set a new collective quantified goal (NCQG) from a floor of USD 100 billion per year, taking into account the needs and priorities of developing countries. NCQG aims to address financing loss and damage alongside mitigation and adaptation.
  164. First Movers Coalition (FMC) — a cluster of companies — will commit $12 billion to decarbonise the cement and concrete industry, announced by the United States special presidential envoy for climate and the World Economic Forum. FMC is a group of large private-sector firms aiming to decarbonise hard-to-abate industries. FMC comprises 65 companies with a collective market value of approximately $8 trillion.
  165. The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) released the Executive Action Plan of Early Warnings for Allduring a roundtable meeting at the 27th Conference of Parties (COP27) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
  166. The red colour of the moon occurs because of the refraction, filtering, and scattering of light by Earth’s atmosphere. When the sun’s rays reach the Earth, much of the blue and green light is scattered, while the orange and red colours remain visible. The scattering is a phenomenon called Rayleigh scattering — named after the 19th-century British physicist John William Strutt also known as Lord Rayleigh — which also causes sunrises and sunsets. This gives the moon a reddish hue, leading to the name Blood Moon. A November eclipse is called Beaver Moon because it happens during the month when beavers begin taking shelter in their lodges.
  167. The Agriculture Innovation Mission for Climate (AIM for Climate / AIM4C) is a joint initiative by the United States and the United Arab Emirates. AIM for Climate seeks to address climate change and global hunger by uniting participants to significantly increase investment in, and other support for, climate-smart agriculture and food systems innovation over five years (2021 – 2025).
  168. Horn of Africa’s seven countries — Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda.
  169. Lycopene is a carotenoid found in tomatoes, grapefruit, watermelons and papaya. It is also synthesised by plants and microorganisms but cannot be synthesised by the human body and can only be obtained via diet. It is a potent antioxidant that helps prevent cancer and heart diseases. Several epidemiologic studies have suggested a strong association between a high intake of lycopene-rich foods and a reduced risk of several cancers, notably prostate cancer.
  170. Notre Dame Global Adaptation Index is a program of the University of Notre Dame’s Environmental Change Initiative. The Notre Dame Global Adaptation Index, or ND-GAIN, ranks the climate adaptationperformance for 177 countries over the last 17 years.
  171. The Sahel extends south of the Sahara from Senegal in the west to Ethiopia in the east of Africa. It is is particularly vulnerable to land degradation, droughts, floods and other climate shocks. 
  172. World Bank’s Country Climate and Development Reports 2022 had focussed on technologies that are yet to become commercialised. For example, green steel, carbon capture and sequestration, or green hydrogen. Country Climate and Development Reports also suggested concrete and priority actions for enabling low-carbon and resilient transition. New or maturing technologies create uncertainties that countries must consider while designing climate strategies, the report pointed out.
  173. In India, the South Asia Drought Monitoring System (SADMS) was developed by the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) and the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), the country’s premier agricultural research institution. 
  174. Millions of people across the world are reportedly suffering from long COVID, leading experts to consider it a parallel pandemic, if not the next big public health concern. But still very little is known about the cause behind the often debilitating conditions. There is, however, one point of reference amid all the confusion. Chronic sequelae — where sequelae means the consequence of another disease or injury — has been recorded in patients of ebola, polio and chikungunya. Other pathogens leading to a similar condition include Epstein Barr virus (EBV), West Nile virus, Ross River virus, Coxsackie Ba virus, H1N1/09 influenza virus, Varicella Zoster virus virus.
  175. El Niño is a local warming of surface waters, which takes place in the entire equatorial zone of the central and eastern Pacific Ocean. It affects the atmospheric circulation and direction of winds world-wide. El Niño often reduces rainfall and causes drier forests in the tropical regions of Southeast Asia, according to the study. Since tropical rainforests there usually experience rainfall year-round with no dry season, El Niño-induced drought increases tree mortality. El Niño has been known to stimulate mass flowering and fruiting, leading to an increase in seedlings in tropical rainforests in Southeast Asia. 
  176. InSight is short for Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport. It is the first outer space robotic explorer to study in-depththe “inner space” of Mars: The crust, mantle and core. The spacecraft was launched May 2018. Four years later, NASA announced that the lander was gradually losing power as its solar panels were gathering dust.
  177. Countries comprising the ‘Group of 20’ (G20) have provided nearly $700 billion in subsidies forcoal, oil, gas and fossil-fuel industries in 2021, according to Climate Policy Factbook. The factbook was released by BloombergNEF and Bloomberg Philanthropies. The factbook examined the advancements made by each G-20 country in three specific policy areas — phasing out fossil fuels, carbon pricing and disclosure of climate risks.

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