Current Simplified part 3-Enviornment-3


  1. International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has assessed 50 animal species as “critically endangered”. It includes 18 species of amphibians, 14 varieties of fish, 13 birds and 10 mammals.
  2. Four-colour Classification Scheme for industries based on their pollution potential.
    • The Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) has released a new Four-colour Classification Scheme for industries based on their pollution potential.
    • The four-colour classification scheme of industrial sectors based on the Pollution Index (PI) which is a function of the
      • (i) Emissions (air pollutants)
      • (ii) Effluents (water pollutants)
      • (iii) hazardous wastes generated and
      • (iv) Consumption of resources.
    • Key facts
  3. Tiger population in India
    • India is home to nearly 70% of the world’s tiger population and
    • according to the 2014 tiger census, there are 2,226 tigers in the country.
    • State-wise, Karnataka has the highest number of tigers (406) followed by Uttarakhand (340), Madhya Pradesh (308), Tamil Nadu (229), Maharashtra (190), Assam (167), Kerala (136) and Uttar Pradesh (117).
  4. Tiger Conservation in Maharashtra
    • Currently, Maharashtra state has six tiger reserves viz. Tadoba, Melghat, Pench, Nagzira, Sahyadri and Bor.
    • It should be noted that except Sahyadri tiger reserve (located in Kokan region) remaining 5 are located in Vidharbha region of state.
    • Maharashtra has recorded around 190 tigers as per the 2014 Tiger census (usually conducted every four years).
    • Tiger population has recorded a steady rise from 103 in 2006 to 169 in 2010.
    • The increase population of Tigers in state has been attributed to the successful implementation of various conservation efforts.
  5. Unnat Jyoti by Affordable LEDs for All (UJALA).
    • The Union Government has launched National LED programme – Unnat Jyoti by Affordable LEDs for All (UJALA).
    • It was launched by Union Minister for State (IC) for Power, Coal and Renewable Energy Piyush Goyal in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh.
    • Key facts
      • The UJALA scheme is being implemented by Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL), a joint venture of PSUs under the Union Ministry of Power.
      • It is LED based Domestic Efficient Lighting Programme (DELP).
      • Under it, 3 crore LED Bulbs will be distributed in Madhya Pradesh in the next 6 months.
      • Under it, people of Madhya Pradesh will get subsidiesed 9W energy efficient LED bulbs by paying just 85 rupees per LED bulb.
      • The scheme will help reduce electricity bills of consumers, contribute to the energy security of India and also help in environment protection.
    • Background
      • The Scheme was launched as part of Union Government’s efforts to spread the message of energy efficiency in the country.
      • LED bulbs have a very long life, almost 50 times more than ordinary bulbs, and 8-10 times that of CFLs, and therefore provide both energy and cost savings in the medium term.
      • It will help in saving of energy around 24 crore units every year.
  6. Vermin
    • Vermin means wild mammals and birds which are harmful to crops, farm animals or which carry disease.
    • In India, wild animals can be declared as vermin if they have become
      • (i) dangerous to human life or property (including standing crops on any land).
      • (ii) become disabled or diseased as to be beyond recovery.
    • Using these provisions, any animal listed in Schedule I to IV of WPA can be declared vermin by listing it in Schedule V for a specific period.
    • Currently, some animals like the common crow, fruit bats, mice and rats have been listed as vermin in Schedule V of WPA.
  7. Wild Pig
    • The Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) has declared Wild Pig (sus scrofa) as vermin in Uttarakhand for a year.
    • In this regard, MoEFCC has used its powers enshrined to it by section 62 of the Wildlife Protection Act (WPA), 1972.
    • For this purpose, ministry has shifted protected wild pig (listed in schedule III to the Act) in the vermin category to Schedule V of the Act for period of 1 year.
  8. MoEFCC has rejected  forest department’s proposal to declare Neel Gai (blue bull) vermin.
  9. Vermin what next?
    • This decision will allow state forest authorities and people to carry out an extermination (hunting/poaching) of wild pigs outside the reserve forest on a large scale.
    • To do so, they will no longer require permission from the forest or wildlife officials and thus their actions cannot attract penal provisions of the WPA.
    • It will seek to balance local population of the wild pigs to mitigate the damage to human life, crops and other properties in the state for ensuring conservation of wildlife in forests.
  10. National Air Quality Index
    • The National AQI is published for every month by CPCB along with a numerical value and a colour code which helps in comparing air pollution levels in cities.
    • It is determined on the basis of concentration of 8 pollutants, including
      • Particulate Matter (PM 2.5, PM 10),
      • sulphur dioxide (SO2),
      • nitrogen dioxide (NO2),
      • carbon monoxide (CO),
      • ozone (O3),
      • ammonia (NH3) and
      • lead (Pb).
    • The colour categories are classified into 6 categories depending upon numerical value as
  11. Underground Coal Gasification (UCG)?
    • UCG is a clean coal extraction technology for extracting energy from the coal seams and lignite resources which cannot be mined through traditional mining technology.
    • It is mainly an industrial process which converts coal into product gases such as methane, hydrogen, CO and CO2 that are combusted for electricity generation.
    • The gasification process is carried out in non-mined coal seams using injection of oxidants which brings the product gas to surface through production wells drilled from the surface.
  12. Criteria to classify seasonal rainfall(IMD)
    • The rules have been changed to classify seasonal rainfall.
    • IMD has introduced 6 new categories replacing old four rainfall categories (excess, normal, deficient and scanty). New categories are
      • Large excess: 60 per cent and above.
      • Excess: between 20 per cent and 59 per cent.
      • Normal: minus 19 per cent to plus 19 per cent;
      • Deficient: minus 20 per cent to minus 59 per cent.
      • Large deficient: below 60 per cent
      • No Rain: 0 per cent.
  13. Terminology
    • Heat wave: Temperatures greater than 4.50C above usual temperatures for the region.
    • Severe heat wave: Temperatures greater than or equal to 470C.
    • Cold wave: Temperatures less than 4.50C above usual temperatures for the region.
    • Severe cold wave: Minimum temperature is 20C or lower.
  14. India State of Forest Report (ISFR) 2015
    • India’s forest and tree cover has been increased by 5081 Square kilometre.
    • The total forest and tree cover in the country is 79.42 million hectare, which accounts for 24.16 per cent of the total geographical area.
    • The total forest cover of the country has increased by 3, 775 sq km and the tree cover has gone up by 1, 306 sq km.
    • The majority of the increase in forest cover has been observed in open forest category mainly outside forest areas, followed by Very Dense Forest.
    • Open Forest area: Increased by 4744 sq km and accounts for 9.14 per cent of the total geographical area.
    • Very Dense Forest area: Increased by 2404 sq km and accounts for 2.61 per cent of the total geographical area.
    • Total carbon stock: Increased by 1.48 per cent (103 million tonnes) and is estimated to be 7, 044 million tonnes in the country’s forest.
    • Around 40 per cent forest cover in India is in 9 big patches of 10, 000 sq kms and more.
    • The increase in mangrove cover also has been included in the increase in total forest cover.
    • State wise maximum increase in forest cover: Tamil Nadu (2, 501 sq km), Kerala (1, 317 sq km) and Jammu & Kashmir (450 sq km).
      Largest forest cover in terms of area: Madhya Pradesh (77, 462 sq km), Arunachal Pradesh (67, 248 sq km) and Chhattisgarh (55, 586 sq km).
    • Highest percentage of forest cover: Mizoram (88.93%), Lakshadweep (84.56%).
      States/UTs having forest cover above 33 per cent: 15 States/UTs have forest cover above 33 percent of the geographical area.
      Out of these 7 states/UTs have more than 75 per cent forest cover. They are Mizoram, Lakshadweep, Andaman & Nicobar Island, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Meghalaya and Manipur.
    • 8 states have forest cover in between 33 per cent to 75 per cent. They are Tripura, Goa, Sikkim, Kerala, Uttarakhand, Dadra & Nagar Haveli, Chhattisgarh and Assam.
  15. Biodiesel
    • Biodiesel is a green fuel that provides quasi-renewable energy for cleaner alternatives as sustainable fuel for diesel locomotives and reduces dependency on fossil fuel especially diesel.
    • It is commonly obtained from crops such as sugarcane, cassava, corn, potato, beetroot and recently from grapes, banana and dates etc.
    • Union Government is promoting use of biodiesel in India Railways for the purpose of energy security, cleaner air and savings in foreign exchange along with employment opportunities in rural areas.
  16. Zoological Survey of India (ZSI)
    • ZSI is the apex institution on animal (fauna) taxonomy in India.
    • Established: 1 July 1916.
    • Objective: To promote the survey, exploration, research and documentation on various aspects of animal taxonomy in the Indian subcontinent. It also seeks advancement of knowledge on animal taxonomy.
    • Headquarter: Kolkata. It also has 16 regional centres located in different parts of the country.
    • Functions under the aegis of Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC).
    • It activities are coordinated by the Conservation and Survey Division of MoEFCC.
    • It has been declared as the designated repository for the National Zoological Collection as per section 39 of the National Biodiversity Act, 2002
    • Activities Undertaken: Study of the fauna of states, of conservation areas, of important ecosystems.
      It also undertakes status survey of endangered species, fauna of India and ecological Studies & Environmental impact assessments.
    • ZSI publishes Red Data Book on Indian Animals.
    • It was first published in 1983 and is similar to Red Data Book published by International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN).
  17. Bharat stage (BS) norms
    • Bharat stage (BS) norms are emission standards decided by the government to regulate the amount of air pollutants from vehicles.
    • They were adopted in line with European regulation standard ‘Euro norms’ in 2000.
    • So far, 4 states of Bharat stage (BS) norms have been issued by government.
    • In each stage certain limit is specified on the released pollutants and in the succeeding higher stages, the BS norms reduces the limit of pollutant emission.
    • Issued BS stages are
      • BS-I      Euro 1     2000
      • BS-II    Euro 2     2005
      • BS-III   Euro 3     2010
      • BS-IV   Euro 4     2015 (63 cities till 1 April 2015)
    • Earlier, Saumitra Chaudhri Committee had recommended to introduce even lesser vehicular pollutant releasing BS-V (0.005 rspm) and BS-VI (0.0025 rspm) norms throughout the nation by 2022 and 2024 respectively.
  18. Kaziranga National Park
    • It is located in the Golaghat and Nagaon districts of Assam and is circumscribed by the Brahmaputra River.
    • It was designated with National Park status in 1968 and was declared UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985 for its unique natural environment.
    • The park hosts two-thirds of the world’s great one-horned rhinoceroses which are listed as vulnerable on the IUCN Red list of Threatened Species.
    • It is also home to large breeding populations of tigers, elephants, wild water buffalo, and swamp deer.
    • Kaziranga is also recognized as an Important Bird Area by BirdLife International for conservation of avifaunal species.
  19. UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change)
    • The UNFCCC is an international environmental treaty negotiated at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992 and entered into force in 1994.
    • It has near universal membership as it has 196 countries and European Union (EU) as its members.
    • It is the parent treaty of the 1997 Kyoto Protocol which was ratified by 192 of the UNFCCC Parties.
    • The ultimate objective of both treaties is to stabilize greenhouse gas (GHGs) concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that will prevent dangerous human interference with the climate system.
  20. Six GHGs in Inventory:
    1. Carbon dioxide (CO2),
    2. Methane (CH4),
    3. Perfluorocarbons (PFCs),
    4. Nitrous Oxide (N2O),
    5. Sulfur Hexafluoride (SF6) and
    6. Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs).
  21. Olive Ridley Turtles
    • Scientific name: Lepidochelys olivacea.
    • They are also known as the Pacific ridley sea turtle.
    • Generally found in warm and tropical waters, primarily in the Pacific and Indian Oceans.
    • Protection Status: Listed as endangered species in IUCN Red Data Book because of their few remaining nesting sites in the world.
    • Protected under Schedule-I of Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 of India.
  22. National Mission for Green India (GIM)
    • GIM is one of the 8 key Missions outlined under National Action
    • Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC).
    • It aims at protecting, enhancing and restoring India’s decreasing forest cover and responding to climate change by a combination of mitigation and adaptation measures.
    • The mission acknowledges the influence forests on environmental amelioration through climate change mitigation, water security, food security, biodiversity conservation and livelihood security of forest-dependent communities.
    • It hinges on decentralized participatory approach by involving grass root level communities and organizations in decision making, planning, implementation and monitoring.
  23. India is fourth largest carbon emitter
    • in the world in terms of per capita emission accounting for 6.6 % of global emissions for the year 2012.
    • It was revealed by the World Resources Institute (WRI) in its latest analyses of the country-wise carbon emissions of climate-damaging greenhouse gases (GHGs).
    • According to the analysis figures of WRI,
    • Top 10 emitters are:
      1. China (25.26%),
      2. US (14.4%),
      3. European Union (10.16%),
      4. India (6.69%),
      5. Russia (5.36%),
      6. Japan (3.11%),
      7. Brazil (2.34%),
      8. Indonesia (1.76%),
      9. Mexico (1.67%) and
      10. Iran (1.65%).
    • Emission Disparity: Largest 10 emitters have contributed a majority of over 72% of global GHGs emissions (excluding change in land use and forestry).
    • Six of the top 10 emitters are developing countries.
    • On the other hand, the lowest 100 emitters had contributed less than 3% of global emissions.
    • Sector wise:
      • energy sector is the largest source of GHGs emissions accounting for more than 75% of global emissions.
      • Industrial and agricultural sectors also have significantly contributed in GHGs emissions.
  24. CAMPA Fund?
    • Levies are imposed on development projects that seek land inside a Reserved Forest or a Protected Area (PA) in a sanctuary or a national park.
    • These collected levies are accrued in the CAMPA Funds which are to be utilised to plant trees elsewhere in order to ostensibly compensate the loss of forest due to development projects.
    • It should be noted that the CAMPA has been created on the order of the Supreme Court in October 2002.
    • The Ad-hoc CAMPA decides the procedure of per-verification of credits of levies in the State-wise accounts.
  25. Geographical Indication (GI) status
    • Geographical Indication is an insignia on products having a unique geographical origin and evolution over centuries.
    • These products have special quality or reputation attributable to its geographical origin.
    • In India, GI registration is governed by the Geographical Indications of goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999.
    • Advantages: GI status confers legal protection to these products and prevents unauthorised use of it by others.
    • It promotes economic prosperity of producers of goods and also helps consumers get quality products of desired traits.
    • Darjeeling tea was the first agricultural product in India to be accorded with GI tag.
    • Presently, there are nearly 200 unique products registered as GIs in India.

One comment

  1. Thank you very much for posting such a important topic. It will be very helpful for upcoming MPSC Forest Mains exam.

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