featuring articles by
photo stories by
Sh. AKHILESH K. SAHAY Dr. ANIL P. JOSHI
GURMEET SAPAL THOMSON SABURAJ
environment & people - the battle continues by VINEETA BHARDWAJ vegetarianism or the climax of human evolution by Isabelle Richaud winged wonders
face to face with SILKY JAIN
INDIA bringing people together ExpressionS 1 AUGUST 2011
kicked upstairs by YUDHISHTER PURAN SINGH & POOJA BHATT
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ExpressionS AUGUST 2011
A K S H AY M A D A N AUGUST 2011
the readers’ expressions
I just loved this magazine , photography , knowledge and what not - Great going .... Looking forward spreading the message for you guys about it :) - best of luck
Nishtha Kaushik I was introduced to this magazine by my friend and I am truly speechless. Amazing photographs by Christina and Pramod. Kudos to the entire team. Rahul Kumar I have been following the magazine since the past few issues and I just loved the new columns Green corporate, E2 and world view in particular. These columns are a delight to read, not that others ain’t but these are amongst my favorite. Ritiesh Sharma I liked the article written by Yudhishter, it is quite a sad fact how the forest guards in our country are treated. Expressions is one magazine which stands out for the quality of the articles and apart from that the magazine features articles ranging on various issues which makes it that much more interesting to read. I would like to congratulate the entire team. Keep up the good work. Richa Chauhan Being a bird-watcher and an amateur photographer I just loved the article written by Dr. Caesar Sengupta. The article is quite informative and a delight to read, really looking forward reading the Winged Wonders column in the forthcoming issues.
from the editor’s desk
“The two biggest issues facing the environment are spreading the word in an entertaining and memorable way, and then mobilizing that interest into constructive, practical action.” The Environment needs collective remedying support, and urgently. Since awareness programs across the world and countless international summits haven’t succeeded in addressing the “environment” situation with the “collectivity” and “urgency” it requires, quite apparently, we need to address the issue from a more “catchy” angle.
“Dragon’s Vale” is a short story inspired by JRR Tolkien’s “Lord of the Rings” with a new interpretation of that story and the world of Middle Earth. The story is set in the far future when technology has become sufficiently advanced to be indistinguishable from magic, and men have forgotten their origins. The story explores the background to such a world and the events following the aftermath of the “Ring” trilogy. According to Michael Bond, the man who proposed the idea of Dragon’s Vale, “Many people recognize the economic and social benefits of treating the environment better, but if you have to deal with the world-wide scale of the problem and its urgency, you have to take a commercial approach.” Environmental Studies is becoming extremely popular and its basic aspects have a direct relevance to every section of the society. It’s only when you know your surroundings well, can you do something to better them. But here’s where the first two paragraphs of this message come in. The mode of educating people about the Environment, the mode of spreading ‘the word’ has to change. Knowledge about the environment is very important since it deals with the most mundane problems of life where each individual matters, like dealing with safe and clean drinking water, hygienic living conditions, clean and fresh air, fertile land, healthy food and sustainable development. A change in the ‘mode’ is the need of the hour. Read what this month’s issue of ‘Expressions’ has to say about our environment and ‘be the change that you wish to see’.
Amazing photographs by Christina Bush and Pramod Pednekar.
Expressi ExpressioonnS S AUGUST 2011
Features Editor, Expressions AUGUST 2011
the CREATORS Pooja Bhatt
the expressions INSIDE
Kicked Upstairs by UPA-II Yudhishter Puran Singh & Pooja Bhatt
Winged Wonders - Bird Photography couldn’t have been simpler than this… Dr. Caeser Sengupta
40 Thomson Saburaj 52 Gurmeet Sapal
Fascinating World Of Butterflies Akhilesh K. Sahay
EXP R ES S IO NS CH O O L
World View - Vegetarianism Isabelle Richaud
Karishma Gulati FEATURES EDITOR
Chetna Gurung UTTARAKHAND
The Million Fireflies Gunajit Brahma
Well with Gross Domestic Property, but Gross Environmental Property too Prof. Anil P. Joshi
Trees - the lungs of a City Mrs. Surbhi Arora
IN TH E NEWS
The Butterfly Diaries - A Vigil in the Dark Col. Ashwin Baindur
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cover design and photograph AKSHAY MADAN
REST OF INDIA
Green Corporate - The Green Pepsi Generation Naman Khanduri A Tribute to Cheeta, The Chimp Christina Bush
Indian Youth Climate Network
Environmental Law - Air Namrata Walia
O R G ANIZ ATIO NAL UPD ATE
Environment & People - the battle continues Ms. Vineeta Bhardwaj
COPY & DESK EDITOR
Water - A human Right or a Commodity Anuvansh Sharma
Ways to Photograph Doon - 9 Sandip Puran Singh
FOUNDER & EDITOR
CREATIVE EDITOR & DESIGNER
P H OTO S TO R IES
Face to Face with Ms. Silky Jain
Yudhishter Puran Singh
Sandip Puran Singh
PERMISSIONS For permissions to copy or reuse material from EXPRESSIONS, write to email@example.com SUBSCRIPTION SERVICES For subscription queries, write to firstname.lastname@example.org or call +918979741752 ALL EDITORIAL QUERIES MUST BE DIRECTED TO The Editor, Expressions, 51-A Subhash Road, Dehradun 248140, Uttarakhand, India M: +919411114921, Fax: 011-66173614
PHOTO EDITOR INDIA
bringing people together
Views and opinions expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of Expressions., its publisher and/or editors. We at Expressions do our best to verify the information published but do not take any responsibility for the absolute accuracy of the information
Yudhishter Puran Singh 22 year old graduate from Mumbai University, a young entrepreneur who loves to devote whatever time he can towards creating awareness about the need for preserving environment. Presently he leads the icare team and is also the editor of expressions
Pooja Bhatt a design student currently studying in NIFT Bangalore. She’s a nature enthusiast and cares about the planet and wants to prevent its deterioration. She loves music, cinema, learning, art, ideas, reading, writing and so on.
he land of legends and a truly great civilization, oh mother why did you fall asleep? My countrymen when will thou be awake? The clock is turning and we need to walk faster but not forget who we are. We need to walk together. We need to lead well, while taking this heritage forward. India is now staring at the face of development but what we need to ask is that should progress at the stake of environment be promoted? Is it ethical to sacrifice environmental concerns for rampant eco-development? Who’s going to protect the sacred rivers, our forests, our glaciers? Are we meeting these challenges effectively? The Ministry Of Environment and Forests (MOEF) employs a Cabinet Minister who is assisted by two other ministers of state. It looks at planning and execution of environmental laws and acts. Jairam Ramesh, (exIndian Minister of State for Environments and Forests,) led the portfolio since May 2009. An MIT and IIT, Bombay alumni, he was
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also on the National Advisory Council, India. A popular columnist for various national dailies and journals, he’s a prolific writer, a great futuristic thinker and a very progressive man. A visionary, he tried to meet the challenges of fixing India’s deteriorating Environmental Policies, but sadly his enthusiasm did not garner much support. In a country where dirty politics have raised much concern, it is pitiful to see something as crucial as Environment being politicized. In India, Environment has always been treated as a block to economic and overall development, even when sustainable development is a growing concern across the world. Alas, here, it is only on paper. India is a magnificent country, has a great cultural heritage. It’s so rich, yet today, is crippled by the abject poverty, unemployment and so on and so forth. It has the potential to be a true world leader, provided disparities are removed, egoistic mindsets expelled and the diverse problems tackled with clarity.
We boast of having the maximum number of acts to preserve the environment but sadly, the least number are actually implemented. The lengthiest constitution but the least execution. A nation torn up between corrupt politicians or tedious bureaucratic procedures.
“If there is one place on the face of earth where all the dreams of living men have found a home from the very earliest days when man began the dream of existence, it is India!” Romaine Rolland (French scholar) In such a scenario, when a minister is removed from his post for actually doing his job, it leaves us wondering why environment is being neglected just for the sake of progress.
He was often met with stout resistance due statements that were often bordering on the It’s hard to believe that the same ministry had lines of controversy, sometimes anti-governMr. TR Baalu and Mr. A Raja and during their ment, sometimes filled with sarcasm. But he tenure its hard to remember if at all there was was just being honest and vocal about it. Many anything concrete that they managed to do, lack the courage needed to speak their mind thereby when Jairam Ramesh took over we all with conviction, even if it amounts to fighting had hopes that we will finally have a minister alone for what is right. He’s an extremely eduwho could give us the much needed change cated man with a plan, had he been given more and revive the economy and lead India towards time to execute his plans, surely a lot changes a greener tomorrow. could have been implemented. It was slightly unfair. But that’s the common attitude towards There have been many notable contributions anybody who tries to change something. and according to me the formulation of India Climate Assessment Report is right up there, And the current environmental scenario of our not just that his initiative towards protecting nation is yet to change for the better. Tiger zones like the Panna Tiger reserve are We sincerely hope that the new Environment some of his achievements. Not to forget it was Ministry does justice to the portfolio and eradithe Minister himself who was instrumental in cates the problems with a lot more grit and fosetting up the National Green Tribunal though cus and above all we hope Mrs. Jayanthi Natrathe jury is still out on it but sadly with Jairam jan is given sufficient time and is not victimized Ramesh kicked upstairs by UPA II, it’s hard to in the name of politics. imagine what’s going to happen next. I would like to conclude that no matter how While in office, Jairam Ramesh raised his voice you judge his performance but in the end he against Vedanta mining in Niyamgiri hills, in has succeeded in bringing the environment iseastern Orissa; “I have taken this decision sue deservedly, onto the front pages of the mepurely on a legal approach - laws are being vio- dia. His track record will certainly be difficult lated,” he said. for his successor to emulate.
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Bird Photography couldn’t have been simpler than this… Dr Caesar Sengupta MD
the General Manager and Head Laboratory Operations of Thyrocare Technologies Ltd. He has been passionate about photography since he was a child of 12 years. He still manages to take out time to nurture his passion of wildlife photography amidst his busy schedules of corporate professionalism. He has traveled extensively across the country and his work has been acknowledged and appreciated in various media, publication houses, forums and organisations throughout India.
Amit somehow managed with our existing gadgets. Parag, in a state of elation with his 500 mm was ready to lend his 100 – 400 mm to me for the entire trip, which would easily serve my purpose. The flight was sufficiently delayed, ours being the 9th in the queue on the runway. Sitting inside the aircraft, dreaming about the next few days of absolute bliss, I was feeling dizzy. Waking up with a jerk, I realized that we had waited for almost an hour on the runway itself before we actually flew. By the time we reached Delhi airport, it was almost midnight. There weren’t any plans to halt for the night. Against all apprehensions, our driver was waiting for us. “Good evening, sir”, he greeted. “It would take 8- 9 hours to reach Pangot”, our driver declare- a long overnight drive was anticipated. A comfortably spacious Toyota Innova ensured that the luggage was adequately placed in the trunk and we had enough space to sleep soundly. I didn’t realize when I slept and woke up with the few cold raindrops wet-
Can’t recall when I had fallen asleep. Woke up with a few cold raindrops wetting my nose tip-could feel a gush of cold air as I looked out of the window. The car was adequately speeding on the hilly road. I looked at my watch- it was 6:30 am in the morning and we had reached Kathgodam. The fresh morning air had an earthen smell typically indicating that it had rained just a short while back. While the feeling was quite intoxicating, it was difficult to avoid the obvious worry of the possibility of the rains spoiling the entire trip because we were on one of our major birding expeditions- Pangot and Sat Tal, to witness the birds of the Himalayas.
irding in the forests of the Western Ghats had become almost a routine weekend exercise. Trip reports of Rakesh Dhareshwar and Clement Francis had already created enough inquisitiveness about the Himalayan avian fauna. This exclusive birding expedition was planned almost 2 months back over a cup of coffee while returning from Karjat to Mum-
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bai. Getting leave from work was difficult for each of us and it wasn’t until late that we got a confirmation from all three members. Getting geared up with better gadgets, although was on the books, but wasn’t a feasible option at least for me, when the decisions were dwindling. Except for Parag, who was loaded with his brand new 7D and 500 mm prime, me and
ting my nose tip- Kathgodam. Jungle Lore birding camp of Pangot was a surprise package. We could see only a signboard and no resort in the vicinity as the car stopped. Soon I realized that the resort has been constructed nestled on the slope of the hill and one had to walk down a few steps to reach the reception. As soon as we stepped in, the warm welcome by the staff got added to the list of the feel good factors. I had seen a resort exclusively made for birding, for the first time ever. The moment I stepped in, I saw the attic and walked up to check it out. It could accomodate two extra people and I decided to have my bed laid there. The wooden cottage had an elusive internal furnishing which displayed a very magical, wild effect. A cup of hot coffee added to the magic and by the time it was over, I had already fit the lens on the body for the next few days. “Good morning sir, we can leave if you are ready”, someone called from behind. We turned to meet the most highlighted member of the entire trip -
magpie blue Red
Hari Lama, our guide, a complete encyclopedia for the local birds. Pangot is a small village 15 km from Nainital, 50 km from Kathgodam and 80 km from the very well known Corbett National Park, very picturesque. Lama said suggested to take us to the woodpecker point first and we started our birding trip of Pangot. The location where Lama took us was quite an interesting one. No sooner did I get down from the car than I got busy gearing up my gadget mounting on the tripod. I heard Lama pass a loud whisper to us – “Woodpecker … ekdum nazdeek mein” (meaning Woodpecker… very near). We rushed towards him and he was pointing towards a tree branch. A beautiful magically coloured Rufous Bellied Woodpecker was sitting on a low branch for the welcome shoot. We shot for more than twenty minutes only to realize that there were so many of them around, and we spread out. The quarrel of the white throated laughing thrushes vibrated all throughout the forest canopy as we moved up the hills. A Great Barbet was calling constantly from a distance. A pair of Rufous Bellied woodpeckers was playing around on the tall tree in front of me. As I had been watching the pair for quite a while, suddenly a Verditer flycatcher flying past drew my attention. I saw Parag with his camera tracking its movement. I turned towards
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Sat Tal bird list:
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36. 37. 38. 39. 40. 41. 42. 43. 44. 45. 46. 47. 48. 49. 50.
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36. 37. 38. 39. 40. 41. 42. 43. 44. 45. 46.
Red billed blue magpie Grey bushchat Himalayan bulbul Streaked laughing thrush Striated prinia Whiskered yuhina Spot winged tit Green backed tit Eurasean jay Black headed jay Ultramarine flycatcher Rufous bellied woodpecker Brown fronted woodpecker Grey treepie Tickels thrush Long billed thrush Mountain hawk eagle Black eagle Blyths reed warbler Russet sparrow Maroon oriole Oriental turtle dove Grey hooded warbler Grey winged blackbird Bar tailed tree creeper Grey headed canary flycatcher Rufous bellied Niltava Chestnut crowned laughing thrush Blue capped rock thrush Slaty headed parakeet Verditer flycatcher Spotted dove Blue whistling thrush Cheer pheasant Himalayan griffon Upland pipit White throated laughing thrush Spotted forktail Rusty cheeked scimiter babler Great barbet Rufous sibia Black throated tit Upland buzzard Steppe eagle Chestnut bellied nuthatch Chestnut bellied rock thrush Scaly bellied woodpecker Paradise flycatcher Lesser yellow naped woodpecker Purple sunbird
Mountain bulbul Black throated sunbird Blue throated barbet Slaty backed forktail Brown dipper Purple sunbird Chestnut bellied nuthatch White browed scimitar babbler Orange bellied leafbird Indian blue robin White browed wagtail Scarlet minivet Grey headed woodpecker Barn swallow House swift Striated laughing thrush Great tit Black lored tit Greenish warbler Blue winged minla Red billed leothrix White crested laughing thrush Orange headed thrush Rufous chinned laughing thrush Wedge tailed green pigeon Whistlers babbler Greater flameback woodpecker Greater yellownaped woodpecker Emarald dove Blue bearded bee eater Blue throated flycatcher Black bulbul Oriental white eye White throated fantail Khalij pheasant Red jungle fowl White rumped munia Crested kingfisher White breasted kingfisher Small blue kingfisher Plumbeous water redstart Sprangled drongo Ashy drongo Asian brown flycatcher Velvet fronted nuthatch Common rosefinch
the woodpeckers, they were gone. I heard some chirping behind - a brown-fronted woodpecker was knocking its beak hard against the wood wall of a tree, I hardly could recognize. I clicked a few photographs and got adequate time to place my tripod in at least three different positions. I had clicked quite a few pictures-the results made me happy later on. We had spent quite some time there when we started feeling hungry and had to return to the base camp. After a moderately heavy lunch, we were ready again for the evening birding session and this time we had to drive quite a distance to reach a sort of an open area filled with Red-billed blue magpies.The chirping of a few Grey bushchats and one or two Himalayan Bulbuls kept us busy till it was dark enough to pack up the cameras. So many lifers (as we call it – a bird which you are likely to see only once in your lifetime) on the very first day, was a bit unexpected and we were quite elated while returning to the resort. A chat over an evening cup of hot coffee, creating the bird list for day one, transferring the images to the laptop, led us to dinner even before we realized.
regular feature MOUNTAIN BULBUL
Pangot bird list:
We were not yet done with Pangot and next morning we went further ahead in search of
black throated tit
Cheer Pheasant. I don’t think even the slightest glimpse that I could get of the elusive Cheer Pheasant would have been possible without Lama. The man has eagle-eyes, “look sir!!” he pointed out . They were difficult to spot even with binoculars but the glimpse was enough to make us all happy. Whiskered Yuhinas kept descending over and over again on the branch on the slope of the elevation we were standing on, and suddenly I saw the long-awaited Himalayan Griffon. I had always wanted an image of this bird, with the valley in the backdrop and the Griffon in flight- a dream shot it would be. But I shook. On the way back, we thought of paying a visit to the woodpeckers again. We had planned to move to Sat Tal post lunch. Pangot is totally isolated from the rest of the world as there are only a few selected patches where one could find mobile network signal. On the way, we stopped at Nainital. Amit had to withdraw some cash, Parag had to take a few antacids and I had to call home. Lama reminded of the Nainital dumping ground before we proceeded to Sat Tal and to our surprise, the dumping ground gave us ample opportunities to photograph so many Steppe Eagles in flight. Honestly speaking, this was my first close shot of a Steppe. By the time we reached Sat Tal, it was already evening. I
sat silently for almost eight hours and it wasn’t tiring , couldn’t have been, as it was a lifetime experience of witnessing more than ten ‘lifers’ in a single day. We knew that this place was to be extracted as much as possible the next day. We spent the entire next day in the same place only to realize that the count of the lifers had grown to eighty-one and we had identified 105 species by then. We were coming to an end of the dream journey to the Himalayas. We had our flights back to Mumbai booked for next day from Delhi.
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saw a lesser yellownaped woodepecker, stilling on the tree trunk just front of me but light conditions weren’t sufficiently worth the effort of unpacking the gadgets. We reached the Sat Tal birding camp resort, located at a 4400 feet altitude in the village of Bhakgtura. This time, it was a tent accommodation. The interior was quite impressive, with a cozy bed; the hot water supply and a modernized shower inside the tent were facilities I had not presumed. Talks, jokes and laughter in high spirits dragged the evening a little longer. Photography started the next morning by 7 a.m, in and around the resort. A Grey tree pie called with its shrilling voice. Lama showed us a place in the vicinity, where we spent almost two hours and some bar- tailed tree creepers kept us busy while the black headed jays were watching being ignored. I am sure they were jealous. We would have spent the whole day there had Lama not mentioned that there were better places ahead and we proceeded towards Laxman Tal. Although the place didn’t appear much impressive in the beginning, we soon realized that we had been missing out on something in our lives till date. This is the place where I shot most of my photographs on the Pangot - Sat Tal trip and the most beautiful ones, thanks to Lama for showing me the ‘studio’ , as I call it. We
Can’t recall when I had fallen asleep. Woke up with the loud honking of the TATA Sumo obstructing the way-could feel a gush of hot air as I looked out of the window. The car was standing still. I looked at my watch-it was 11:30 am .We had reached Delhi.
photos by dr. caesar sengupta
BLUE WHISTLING THrUSH
Ms. Silky Jain In this feature of face to face, expressions got in touch with the executive director of Tulas’s Institute, the young and determined development professional, Ms. Silky Jain, 23, who has been appointed the youth ambassador for icare. She believes in educating the youth and strives to make her institution one of the finest green premises in the valley. icare hopes that she is successful in propagating eco-friendly culture. By inspiring the youth to take charge and successfully carry out all her plans.
EXPRESSIONS (E) Under your tenure as a youth ambassador what are the areas that you would personally like the Dehradun chapter to concentrate on and why? SILKY JAIN (SJ) My prime concerns regarding Dehradun include scarcity of water and garbage recycling. My opinion as an ambassador or as a common citizen of this beautiful city is that, we are heading towards the worst time by using water at own whims and fancies. One really needs to understand that we cannot survive without water, especially the new generation who believes anything and everything can be achieved by splurging money. No matter what amount one spends, water is a resource which would still not be adequately available. Its high time we practice conservation of water to the fullest, before we die craving for it. I am appalled to see the amount of plastic pilferage in our city, the entire valley is being destroyed by it. We use it to our convenience, not realising that it is gradually destroying the course of nature. If a piece of plastic
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takes a few lac years to be eliminated , it’s hard to imagine in the present scenario how many lac years would it take to destroy the huge pile of plastic garbage being produced in this valley as well as in this country. I would genuinely like to request the authorities to make stringent laws to help curb this destruction, or else we would be witnessing see the destruction of our valley in front of our own eyes. I would also advise the common people of all generations to refrain from using the same, and not be partners in crime. If we don’t act, Mother Nature would surely act in a way which would deprive the future generations of many necessities. (E) After completing your studies at Symbiosis IFT you chose to get back to Dehradun, which not many would have done considering you were being offered a job abroad. What made you get back to your home-town? (SJ) Considering the fact that my institute needs me more than I need the institute, I chose to come back. It’s my father’s sheer
hardwork which made me understand that I would neither be doing justice to him nor to thousands of students , by exporting my talent and putting it to use somewhere where I don’t have my roots, and in the bargain not achieving anything but money..It is deep love towards my family, my institute and my students that pulled me back to my city, Dehradun.. (E) As a youth icon what message would you like to give to the youth of the valley towards Environmental conservation? (SJ) My message is very simple- in this era our youth is very talented, but it lacks few basic fundamentals-they should realise as it is said, “As we sow ,so shall it reap” , “What goes around comes around”. So keeping this in mind, we need to attain a certain amount of wisdom so as not to take things lightly. If we don’t think of necessities like water and energy, we would gradually see our world being diminished and destroyed, thanks to our own deeds. So my advice to the people of Doon is to be vigilant and voice anything and everything which is harming Mother Nature, and finally we all would survive at her mercy!! (E) Education and Environment are two core areas which should be a priority for the Government, but sadly that’s not necessarily the case. Where do you think the Government is lagging behind and why? (SJ) Your question reminds me of Micheal Jackson’s song-
My reasoning is very simple - nobody can stop you from performing good deeds, and no power, leave aside politicians, can be a hindrance. If you believe in a cause, perform your individual duties and the rest shall take its own course.
“Heal The World Make It A Better Place For You And For Me And The Entire Human Race There Are People Dying If You Care Enough For The Living Make A Better Place For You And For Me.” My reasoning is very simple - nobody can stop you from performing good deeds, and no power, leave aside politicians, can be a hindrance. If you believe in a cause, perform your individual duties and the rest shall take its own course. (E) Since you became the Youth Ambassador there have been really high hopes and expectations from you. How would you react to all the love and adulation you have received, not just from members but also from the general public? (SJ) It’s mind boggling, and I must thank icare for that. I wouldn’t have been able to voice my opinions regarding the environment had I not been introduced to you guys. I am overwhelmed , and flattered. Regarding people’s hopes,I believe in one thing “Actions speak for yourself”, so let me act ,let me perform and I truly believe I shall leave a mark to this society and this beautiful city which one can consider an epitome to follow.
(E) Tula’s is a prime example of how a college can go green. Over the past few years there have been major investments made towards Renewable energy. Briefly elaborate on the steps taken by the college towards ecological preservation. (SJ) Frankly speaking, we are a conventional institute with unconventional thoughts-we have never hired any ecologist or environmentalist to study our property. Having said that, our chairman Mr.Sunil Kumar Jain is himself a pioneer of many things, he is also an avid nature lover. He did what he could, by creating huge landscapes and other ecological facilities without being guided. He is instrumental in retaining the glory of the institute without being a constraint on the environment. Regarding renewable energy, we plan to educate as many students as we can without charging them anything, and create a programme which would be unique in its own way where everybody is taught about conservation of nature .We are also open to ideas which would help us preserve the ecological balance.
messageon independence day
(E) The youth is not being given an ideal exposure in tier two cities like Dehradun. Comment (SJ) It hurts me everytime when the youth of Dehradun is comapared to that of other cities,and I feel it’s unfair. Dehradun has been home to education and knowledge, with the biggest institutes which many of the major cities crave for. While I say this, I wouldn’t want to discriminate between states and cities, all that I would say is exposure is not one should hunt for, rather look out for opportunities and concentrate on ideating something which the country has never witnessed. It’s a fact that small cities make the country big and we Doonites will set an example for those hailing from the big cities. All I would say at this juncture and with my little experience is that one should aim to inculcate good culture, create vibrant thoughts graced with little hardwork, and anything can be achieved. ‘Exposure’ would probably seem an under-statement !
n this Independence Day 2011 I think the Government of India should allow its 350 million young people to take the lead in having a major role to play in creating a paradigm shift in the way we behave as humans with respect to the environment and other species that share our planet. It is their future and they must act now to secure their own livelihoods. We all know that we cannot do business in a dead planet so as the level of consciousness rises in our nation we will see a shift in the old business as usual approach. By 2020 I believe that the only businesses thriving will be those that have incorporated social, economic and environmental bottom-lines into the core of their business. Those that cannot meet their triple bottom-line will not be able to stay competitive and eventually disappear from the market. I see the world becoming a more tightly bound community in 20 years time due to the fact that our economies are becoming closely linked together. Cultural behavior is being influenced by a global economy and is changing the patterns of production and consumption. Young people will demand a greener global economy in the years to come. I believe that we will be living in a post-carbon economy where no more oil is drilled, no more coal is mined and no more gas is piped. Any remaining fossil fuels in stock would only be burned with 100 percent carbon capture. In this future I see a world where apart from energy, no fertilizers, no plastics, no drugs, no foodstuffs will be manufactured from fossil fuels. I think the biggest challenge in dealing with climate change and poverty is the lack of united political will in many countries to deliver on the
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Bremley Wanbantei Lyngdoh
Former Indian Youth Representative U.N. Millennium Summit 2000
promises that they have made in so many past international negotiations. In order to shift to a post-carbon world the global human population has to stabilized at 9 billion where each person has an annual carbon footprint of around 1 ton. World leaders will have to put a price on the emissions of carbon and all greenhouse gases. If the price of carbon goes up from US$10 to US$500 per ton and over the years we will have to learn to measure it, price it, like a tax. This will encourage people across the planet to produce less GHGs. Under international climate law we have to introduced legally enforceable ‘caps’ or limits to the amounts of GHGs any one country could emit over a year. This will result in the transfer of appropriate clean technologies from the developed to the developing world and over time we will have to build a global green economy with no carbon consumption or emissions. I believe that young people are in the forefront of social, economic and political developments, and they are often agents of change and innovations. The world of work provides the environment through which they can actively participate in society, contribute their talents and visions for the future and develop a sense of commitment and belonging. I know that the creation of sustainable livelihoods has become an important factor in sustainable development, particularly in developing countries and among disadvantaged populations. However, in our nation more support should be given by the Government of India to the promotion and development of economical and environmental sustainable youth livelihoods. Sustainable development requires an explicit consideration of future generations.
butterflies Akhilesh K Sahay
Sahay is a wildlife author and conservationist. He is the author of popular books like GREEN TOPS IN GOA, GLIMPSES FROM INDIA’S NATURAL WORLD. He is currently based in Chennai. He is also on facebook with about 3000 members mostly photographers, from across the globe and can be reached through his email id : email@example.com
utterflies are the most fascinating and endearing creatures of our natural world. Of all the creatures, they are the most wondrous to me. Such color,such grace that it is treat to watch butterfly in action. A life with short span has so much of drama and action.. Common man, by and large, has very little knowledge about the butterflies . The reason is that not much work has been done on butterflies. Taxonomical accounts are aplenty but detailed study on different butterflies is yet to be done. We have many tiger experts , bird experts but we do not have many butterfly experts .
Very romantic indeed. I do not know of any creature whose life is studded with such interesting thing. Their court ship is very interesting indeed. Another term associated with courtship is Patrolling. During patrolling the males fly through the habitat in search of receptive females. During this phase it is so intent and focused for sex partner that until it gets its partner it keeps flying.
Another term associated with butterflies is basking. These butterflies expend lots of energy on flight. They are cold blooded creatures
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and they must warm themselves and their flight muscles to sufficient temperature. For this purpose they usually bask in the open sun with open wings to keep the thoracic muscles warm for the next flight. They store thermal energy from the sun, warming the surfaces of the wings and the veins through which the haemolymph circulates and then passes it to the body tissues. This basking is of two types. Dorsal basking and lateral basking. In dorsal basking heat absorption is increased by spreading the wings , and in lateral basking the wings are clasped above the body . This way the ventral surface becomes perpendicular to the sun’s rays. We all know about the migration of birds but very few are aware that even some butterflies undertake migratory journeys. Not much work has been done on this aspect. There could be several reasons. Perhaps the main reason is that butterflies have very short life span and they do not return to the place they had started from. I have endeavored to give you some insight in to the wonderful lives of butterflies. Now I would give you the names of some of the commonly seen butterflies in most parts of the country. Nature lovers should be able to identify these butterflies.
There are certain phenomena in the life of butterflies which would make for fascinating account. Their love life is very exciting. In some species, the males perch on the ridges and await the arrival of the females. Virgin females fly to these areas for mating and then leave for places of larval host plants to lay eggs . While the females go away, the males will remain on the perching sites for most of their lives. This phenomenon is called Hilltopping.
All these patrolling and the hilltoppping ultimately leads to the ultimate act of mating The male using visual stimuli and olfactory stimuli gets close to female. The male moves close to make contact with the abdomen of the female. If the female is willing , she would raise her wings and uncover the tip of her abdomen and mating may begin. The excitement and action continues. While mating is on , any one of the pair may break into flight. In the process the other partner allows to be dragged about while passively hanging on to the more exuberant partner. Coperation at its best. I do not know which animals show such passion. In some butterflies particularly in the members of the genus Papilio, both the partner move the wings as they cling breast to breast, one below doing it more slowly than one on the top. No other animal enjoys such scintillating sex life as these butterflies do.
While mating is on , any one of the pair may break into flight. In the process the other partner allows to be dragged about while passively hanging on to the more exuberant partner. Cooperation at its best.
t ANOMALOUS NAWAB (Polyura agraria) © AJAY GAIKWAD p BLACK RAJAH (Charaxes solon) © NIKHIL CHAUDHARI
© AJAY GAIKWAD
Some of the common butterflies in India © ANAND AMEMBAL
© ANAND AMEMBAL
COMMON LASCAR u (Pantoporia hordonia) (Moduza procris)
Polyura agraria Charaxes solon Moduza procris Graphium sarpedon. Pantoporia hordonia Polyura athamas Spindasis vulcanus Hypolimnas misippus Junonia almana Danaus chrysippus
plain tiger p (Danaus chrysippus)
1 Anomalous Nawab 2 Black Rajah 3 Commander 4 Common Bluebottle 5 Common Lascar 6 Common Nawab 7 Common Silverline 8 Danaid Eggfly 9 Peacock Pansy 10 Plain Tiger
p DANAID EGGFLY (Hypolimnas misippus)
© AJAY GAIKWAD
COMMON BLUEBOTTLE q (Graphium sarpedon)
If you find it hard to remember the scientific names, igonore them. It would suffice, to begin with, if you can identify these butterflies. I recommend that you get hold of the book By Isaac Kehimkar which is available from BNHS counters. There is another book by Parag Rangnekar which is a very good book for beginners. © AJAY GAIKWAD © NIKHIL CHAUDHARI
p COMMON SILVERLINE (Spindasis vulcanus)
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Try it out and you would find your wildlife journeys even more interesting. photo credits
AJAY GAIKWAd, NIKHIL CHAUDHARI, anand amembal
human evolution Isabelle Richaud
A 30-year-old French citizen, Isablle Richaud, is avegetarian, and works in Antwerp, Belgium for the European branch of TERI (The Energy and Resources Institute, based in New Delhi). She is professionally and personally committed to making this world a better place.
to feel pain and sufferance. Indian-Americans and other hunting societies traditionally go through a whole ritual process around the animal they have killed for eating. By doing so, they intend to honour and thank the animal that has been sacrificed for their own survival. One can argue that – although those rituals may not help the dead animal feeling much better – these animals, at least, have lived in natural conditions all their life, and die with minimum suffering. This must be thought as a highly enviable situation by the animals that Mistreatment is one thing. Killing is another. Killing does are exploited, confined, overfed, mistreated and slaughnot necessarily involve that tered in industrial systems of the beings that are being killed are denied their dignity, meat production. in ignorance of their capacity n my last article I shared with you some thoughts about the inclusion of nonhuman animals in our “circle of compassion”. One argument I wanted to raise is that the ecology, in the most profound sense of the term, cannot be compatible with widely accepted animal mistreatment. We simply cannot claim to be human as long as we continue to collectively accept the inhuman way in which we are treating our fellow animals in factory farms and laboratories.
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A growing number of people in Western countries have made the choice of refraining from eating dead animals – call it meat. For most of these, this is a way to say no to the disrespectful treatment of animals in modern farming. But if you ask these people whether they would eat the meat of an animal that has lived and been killed with dignity and respect, they would probably tell you they would not. There is more than a fight against animal mistreatment in vegetarianism. Vegetarianism is an act of concrete activism against unnecessary sufferance, but it is also a symbolic act of devotion to life and peace.
A widely unknown fact is that many of the greatest thinkers of all times have advocated vegetarianism, and more generally the nonkilling of animals, as a key towards a more peaceful and happy world. Charles Darwin, Leonardo Da Vinci, Albert Einstein, Epicurus, Mohandas K. Gandhi Plato, Pythagoras, Jean Jacques Rousseau, Lisa Simpson, Henry David Thoreau, Voltaire and many more can be named among those. “As long as humans kill animals, they will kill each other” said Pythagoras in the sixth century B.C. Twenty five centuries later, writer Leo Tolstoy prophesied: “As long as there are slaughterhouses, there will be battlefields.” And theologian Albert Schweitzer, one century later, to emphasise: “Until he extends his circle of compassion to include all living things, man himself will not find peace.” These words may ring a religious bell in the minds of our Hindu readers. Hinduism, indeed, says that the conditions of our present life are the result of our karma, namely our actions in previous lives. Hindus like Buddhists believe that killing and torturing, whether directly or indirectly – e.g. by eating meat – inalterably contribute to minimise our chances to be both happy and peaceful beings in a future life.
From a more Cartesian point of view, scientific evidence suggest that eating meat increases the level of testosterone, an hormone believed to contribute to violent behaviour. Some defenders of vegetarianism also argue that the distress felt by animals before being killed are transmitted via their meat to meat eaters, thus contributing to raising anxiety among meat eaters. Another plausible argument against meateating for the sake of human happiness, is that, while we are eating meat and trying hard to ignore the death and pain implied by that activity, we unconsciously repress our inner propensity for compassion. This subtle struggle against the self leads to psychological imbalance and can result, over the long run, in the impairment of our own health1.
Adam and Eve were restricted to eat fruit and plants as long as they lived in the paradisiacal garden of Eden. It was only 1600 year later, when the Earth had been destroyed and renewed again in Noah’s Flood, that God altered the charter to mankind: “Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things” (Genesis 9:2-3). In his unfinished work The Great Instauration, philosopher Francis Bacon claims that vegetarianism would be the beginning of the restitution of mankind’s lost power, which would reinstate the felicity that Adam and Eve enjoyed in the Garden of Eden2.
Finally, strong reasons to think that widespread vegetarianism would help make this world a better place are ecological. Meat production A religious message in favour is one of the most environof vegetarianism could be mentally-destructive human interpreted even in Christian- activities. Livestock is one ity. According to the Bible, of the, if not the greatest man’s dominion over the ani- anthropogenic (read: humanmals apparently did not ininduced) user of land, water, clude killing them – in the be- pesticides, antibiotics and ginning. One of the very first food (in the form of grain and things God said to Adam was: soy). “Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed… Livestock alone occupies 70 and every tree, in the which is percent of all agricultural the man fruit of a tree yieldland on the planet . About ing seed; to you it shall be for 13,500 litres of water are meat” (Genesis 1:29). Some necessary to produce each theologians deducted that kg of beef meat. By compariAUGUST 2011
Meat production is one of the most environmentallydestructive human activities. Livestock is one of the, if not the greatest anthropogenic (read: human-induced) user of land, water, pesticides, antibiotics and food (in the form of grain and soy).
son, water requirement is 1,400 kg for each kg of rice, and 1,200 for each kg of wheat . Most of the water used by livestock production returns to the environment, while carrying along the pesticides, antibiotics, heavy metals (which are sometimes added to the animals’ diet to accelerate growth), pathogens, and the nitrogen and phosphorus contained in manure. Around a third of the world’s cereal harvest and over 90 percent of soya protein is used for animal feed . And yet, the use of
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grain and soya for meat production is a very inefficient way to produce the food we need. On average, 10 kg of feed are necessary to produce 1 kg of live weight of beef. But only 40 percent of live weight is consumed as meat, so as much as 25 kg of feed are necessary to produce 1 kg of edible beef meat . The adverse environmental impacts of meat production can also be assessed in terms of climate change. According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), livestock is responsible for as much as 18 percent of greenhouse-gas emissions (GHG). The largest part of GHG emissions attributable to livestock production comes from the deforestation made necessary to provide land for cattle grazing and animal food production. A global reduction in meat consumption would undoubtedly represent one of the most cost-
effective measures against climate change. A study showed that a global transition to a low meat-diet as recommended for health reasons would reduce the GHG mitigation costs of limiting the global rise in temperatures to 2°C by about 50 percent in 2050 compared to the reference case . So a global evolution towards vegetarianism would not only save hundreds of millions of emotional, sentient beings from pain and slaughter – which would be in itself a priceless achievement - it would also announce the advent of a more spiritual, happy and peaceful era in the history of humankind.
own good reasons to indulge in meat-eating. But it can be expected that with the rapid, massive changes in mindsets that are being driven by ecological and other ethical concerns
(think of our extending “circle of compassion”), eating habits are set to change, too. Reducing meat consumption worldwide is an unavoidable necessity, be it for environmental reasons
alone. And once awareness and action in that direction will have taken off, the climax of that trajectory, vegetarianism, will not lie as far off as it may seem today.
Henning Steinfield et al, 2006. Livestock’s Long Shadow. Environmental Issues and Options. Food and Agriculture Organisation, Livestock, Environment and Development Initiative 4 Water Council, 2004. E-conference synthesis. Virtual water trade, conscious choices 5 Henning Steinfield et al, 2006. Livestock’s Long Shadow. Environmental Issues and Options. Food and Agriculture Organisation, Livestock, Environment and Development Initiative 6 Smil, V. 2002. Worldwide transformation of diets, burdens of meat production and opportunities for novel food proteins. Enzyme and Microbial Technology 30:305–311 7 Elke Stehfest et al, 2009. Climate benefits of changing diets. PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency 3
Of course, the number of people ready to commit themselves to personally contribute to that evolution is still very modest. Far greater is the number of people who find their
photograph doon Sandip Puran Singh
Founder of SUSWA, an NGO working along the northern boundary of Rajaji National Park. He’s also an avid bird watcher and an amateur aturalist working on the Doon valley.
Just as a subject needs to be seen in a particular way for color photography, so shooting in mono-chrome needs another very different visual approach. Professional photographers dislike having to shoot color and black and white on the same assignment because the two disciplines are so different. I for one mostly convert after looking at the finished product
the most dominant side branches stood out like giant limbs while a pale morning sky with a hint of clouds formed the back drop. It is essential to ignore the color content of the subject when shooting in monochrome and learn to look only at the tonal graduation it possesses. Color can be a real red herring because it can mask the tones of a scene. A still life of a single red apple in basket full of green ones, for instance, would look quite striking because of the contrast in color, yet in monochrome the red apple would hardly be distinguishable from the green ones. In the next issue I will describe the steps that we can take using editing software’s to make striking monochrome images which depend on elements such as shape, form, texture and pattern for the production of eye catching photograph.
oaktree This picture was taken during autumn on a trip to Kanatal. We had spent the night at Karan Singha’s ‘Hazara height’ orchard resort which is on top of a ridge. The next morning was as usual soft with dew quoting the country side as we set out towards the Saklani farm. I had already taken a no. of photographs of the Himalayas when the sun began to warm the air and the dew started to melt. As we walked past the densely forested path and descended towards the Northern face a light mist drifted up the valley and as I reached the bottom this beautiful Oak Tree emerged leaning out from the hill side. Old and stately it stood silent as a monarch surveying its domain. The mountain side lay to its left and I used a long focus lens to isolate the tree and frame the image so that the trunk and
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The song river as it meanders past Satya Narayan to meet the Ganges is a delight to look at the through the seasons. My visit to Haridwar on an assignment to provide visual material for geography – ‘Exploring the Doon’ required of me to look at various geographical landmarks of this part of the Doon valley. It was a clear day as I stood on the old derelict bridge spanning the river facing west this beautiful view of a gentle song snaking its way past the bridge came into view. The sedge flat on the right bank formed the fore-ground while the Shivalik forests formed the back-ground making it a complete picture. All I needed to do was to compose and make a appropriate frame.
A cycling experience in the heart of Rural India during the weekend of World Environment Day 2011 Gunajit Brahma
an environmentalist, social worker, volunteer and a poet. He is also an entrepreneur working in the area of renewable energy and plans to make it accessible to every individual in this world. He is one of the Partner at Renewable Bazaar (http://renewablebazaar.com/) and is doing PGDM (2010-12) at IIM Indore. He enjoys being closure to nature and likes to trek and cycle with friends.”
This is the first part of the 3 part article series, about my experiences of a cycle tour, a synchronised musical and a rural experience. I would like to share my cycling experience with the avid readers of this magazine. The Plan
I was in Mumbai doing my summer internship (May 2011), and visited my best friend Doley ( Dhrubajyoti Doley) at his place. Over a casual conversation regarding the kind of outdoor activities that we both like to indulge in, Doley mentioned that he knew a cycling club in Mumbai that arranges tours in and around Mumbai on weekends. As he told me more about it,I was eager to be part of one such tour and Doley promised to give me a confirmation soon. I could never have imagined that this conversation would lead to an experience of a lifetime. Few days later Doley mentioned about one such tour being held on the 4th and 5th of June( World Environment Day),2011.I was confused about which activity to choose from the list of activities offered.I remembered my school days when both of us used to go cycling over long distances,and probably that urged me to choose cycling, considering that Doley was willing too.
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I contacted Anil Uchil, CEO of a company and a cycling enthusiast since his college days. Neither Doley nor I owned any cycle, so Anil offered his help by arranging us two cycles . Meanwhile, I opened the Facebook event page that Anil had created for the tour to check the itinerary and the place we would be visiting, Purushwadi, a model village that the NGO Grassroutes have been working on with for its self-sustainable development.
The train reached Kasara around 7:30 am where we had our breakfast and began our cycling tour. The total distance between Kasara and Purushwadi is 80 kms, with 4 climbs,the first being the Kasara Ghat. Anil (who was also our team leader) had arranged for a Tempo to carry our supplies of Water, Glucose packets, food and in case someone got exhausted. The challenging climb to Kasara Ghat was a lifetime experience for me. Anil had instructed us not to race with fellow cyclists but to follow “one’s own pace”,and also to have a continuous fluid intake. While riding through the Kasara Ghat, the scorching Sun had heated my head up, to which Anil suggested me to use a bandana,which would absorb the sweat and act as a coolant. This certainly proved to be very beneficial. I covered the 10 km distance through the Kasara Ghat in an hour and a half, while the other more experienced riders had been waiting for the slower ones like me, at the junction, post Kasara Ghat. We rested there for a while, and then continued our ride. The next league of the ride was a smooth one, as we rode on the NH 3, which was majorly a plain, straight road. The idea was to speed through the plains and go steady over the remaining three climbs, but the scenic beauty around and the excitement of capturing every detail on my first trip,slowed me down as I stopped to capture photographs and videos. Just before the Ghoti Toll, after riding for about
an hour, my bicycle’s chain snapped (as Anil mentioned, its rear derailleur’s lower pulley snapped). I had to seek the help of a motorist, Bipin to inform my fellow cyclists (who were ahead of me) about the problem. He also suggested a cycle shop “Jadhav Cycles” where I could get my cycle repaired. We spent the next hour in the town, enjoying lassi and sugarcane juice. Sunil bought a mudguard for the rear wheel of his Trek cycle, since he anticipated rain in the evening considering the monsoon in Maharashtra.
For the next hour or so,we stayed on the luggage compartment where we met Anil, with Sunil Gandhi, Anish Appukuttan, David Williams and Navin Kulkarni-the other cyclists on the tour.
We continued our journey after getting my cycle repaired and Sunil getting the mudguard attached using some indegineous solution. We had already covered about 25 kms. The 45 km ride towards Rajur was another experience, with a zig-zag hilly path. After taking a right for Bhandardara, the ride became more pleasant with natural beauty everywhere. Wind mills on the top of the hill, visible from the highway, made this part of the ride more memorable. It was great to see renewable energy based technology in action. Little did I know that more of this awaited us! I completed this part of the journey riding through the plains and walking up the hills,lagging behind all other riders. Tired and exhausted, I tried to push myself hard. Doley and I rode for about 2 kms together, talking about our school days. Then I lagged behind. While trying to catch up, I saw Doley mending his cycle. Anish and I went near him, only to realise that Doley fell from his cycle, and wounded his right knee. As Doley explained me later, he was worried about me, as he couldn’t see me riding behind him, and was wondering if I had encountered with any accident ;when he fell from his bike. Friends!
Doley collected one of the cycles (a Fomas,which I rode later) and sent it for servicing before the tour, while I collected the other one in front of Doley’s house (a Raleigh, which Doley rode during the tour).
All set to start our journey on the 4th, we boarded the local, Bandra to Kasara, from Thane Station (till where we cycled from Doley’s house) around 6:30 am.
grossdomesticproductivity , but grossenvironmentalproductivity too
| | GDP GEP Prof. Anil P. Joshi Founder, HESCO, Dehradun, India
Recession is receding globally but pace is said to be slow and among many limiting factors, environment is becoming one major. This realizes that it is high time to review our development approach and this thrust on us a responsibility to re-decide our future strategy. The issue that need to be raised whether we should continue to focus on current development approach or sustainability of ecosystem which is threatened due to lopsided development should also have equal space in our plan. The past focus of planners on economic development only has largely caused depletion of fundamental resources which made human life miserable.
he true economic processes must be learnt from the age old rural economy. There was striking balance between production and consumption and all economic intricacies were addressed
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within community. Any surplus produce was shared with other communities for their respective products and services. There was balance between development and natural resources.
Genuine prosperity can only be enjoyed through primary production of forest, water, food, soil which form true capital of any state.
been the major reason of resource depletion. There are few examples that need to be quoted here. None of us have ever thought that water will be sold in bottles. This is roughly a business of above 1000 crores today. The drinking water which is a fundamental resource is commercialized today. The billions of bottled water are lying in shops hampering nature cycle. The currently stored water would have otherwise irrigated millions of tons of food. This resource was unfortunately poorly managed. Better quality of water would not have encouraged commercialization of this resource. The days are not far when other basic commodities will also be commercialized, considered to be essential for life. This is greed and unscrupulous approach towards natural resources. Since it is a matter of our survival, we should not allow this to happen and should resist against. We are deliberately ignoring this fact and unfortunately are becoming victim of the same. We have not created any mechanism to measure status of our natural resources periodically. We have not also laid growth rule of these resources in our economic development plan or Gross domestic
productivity. Our lopsided economic development strategy has suddenly brought us at a dilemma. We must know that there can be a control on curse of industrialization but we cannot escape from natureâ€™s tyranny as recovery of resources is difficult or next to impossible. Thus there must be some measure to check gain/ loss of natural resources periodically for future. Another important natural resource where we have long back crossed the limit is soil. There is no soil in the country left without chemical fertilizer. The latter has been highly subsidized by Government to get higher productivity. The result is with us now. Many fertile lands in the country have been transformed into chemical ground. Food hazards due to intensive chemical use are also reported often. It is again commercialization of soil (Chemicals) that has caused this jeopardy. The forest which constitute essential environment of any village and nation is vanishing. This resource that helps overall delivery of water, air, and soil is threatening human existence. There is no serious plan to conserve/develop this resource. Lust for luxury basically begun from urbanized culture.
Every physical effort was mechanized and energy for the same was exploited from nature. Unabated exploitation of natural resource continues since longtime and no serious assessment was done to review depleting resources. Forest water and soil has been mainstay of our life. Their constant declinations have been observed and factors for the same were also well known, but largely neglected in lust of gaining industrial benefits.
We are presently passing through ecologically unproductive economic phase. We should immediately focus on productive development of reserves i.e. soil, water, air. Such capital can only ensure us ecologically sound economy. A prudent approach will bring a balance between nature and human activities, rural and urban and between need and comfort. This will only be possible when we also measure through some indices growth of resources periodically. Annual Gross Environmental Productivity of natural resources can only serve such purpose. The 80% populations of the Nation who have dependence on water soil, forest etc are not covered within current GDP claim. This is important
Our Greed have infact
Development need to be redefined. Should we place industrialization, real-estate business and infrastructure as development indicators? Such a development cannot
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be enjoyed particularly when corresponded loss of resources are not acknowledged. There must be a parallel analysis which should measure periodical growth of life resources i.e. water recharging, forest cover, soil enrichment and air quality etc. Extreme physical achievement for comfort have already hampered our ecological cycle, constant negligence will lead to un-repairable losses and other socio ecological disasters.
Gross Environmental Productivity. An indicator that can highlight water, soil, air conservation measures and projects that have been undertaken by the Nation to recover the same. This indicator can collectively display our inclusive growth in development. Environment of the state is prime need as it can only enable us to check our lopsided development approach and will relieve us from growing environmental stresses. Thus planners must be forced to produce It has to be commonly unGross Environmental Proderstood that economy be ductivity annually besides it local or National can not Gross Domestic Productivsustain without ecology. ity. This would also help us Changing climate issue is to decide ecological status most important example of the country. High GEP today. Our agricultural and GDP may point out productivity today cannot rationality in our developbe forecast as climate shift ment plan and will be an makes it unpredictable. example for the developed There are records availand developing countries able on this issue. Off time who are constantly doing heavy rains have jeopardunproductive debate on ized many natural produceconomy and ecology of tive cycle of flora. This slow the Globe. change need to be understood seriously. Constant negligence otherwise will take large toll in future. The Nation has never thought of having an Ecological Growth Indicators that can point out our
to quote here that majority of the population depend, survive and draw their livelihood from local/ natural resources. Agriculture, horticulture fisheries and other local community trades largely depends upon these resources. Unfortunately due to growing paucity of these resources, various trades have suffered major setbacks and migration has become more intense. There are no parameters to define status of water, soil, fodder and fuel needs of the community, whether these have been addressed adequately or neglected. Majority of villages in the country depend on natural resources for the above needs. Many villages have just been vacated mainly because of loss of forest and water sources. There is as such no data available with any development agency to elaborate current status of these resources and the health of country’s environment.
Mrs. Surbhi Arora
a UGC NET qualified faculty member, with around fourteen years of experience in industry and academics. She is a graduate in Commerce and Law. Presently she is pursuing PhD from UPES in the area of Oil & Gas Management. Her research interests include Petro Economics, Micro Economics and Interactional Dimensions of Law & Economics. She believes that our thoughts lead to actions and actions to results. According to her, hard work and consistency have to be the two pillars supporting one’s achievement.
“A human being is part of the whole, called by us “Universe,” a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest - a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole [of] nature in its beauty.” Albert Einstein, 1950.
ur planet is in trouble! Almost every day we seem to hear of yet another problem affecting the environment, be it pollution, acid rain, climate change, global warming, the destruction of rainforests and other wild habitats, the decline and extinction of thousands of species of animals and plants,and so on. The impact we are having on the environment today will surely be reflected in the generations to come. There is no doubt that our generation has uniquely contributed to this increasing chaos, and the burden our grandchildren will have to carry because of it. What is uncertain, however, is what price will today’s policy makers place on the well-being of future generations when formulating out their response to various issues pertaining to the environment.
What price will children have to pay for the four or five carbon-happy generations that have lived before them? The prognosis is not good. In the recent times, the world has been shaken by a series of disasters, such as typhoons, floods, cyclones, and unbearable heat wave,for instance and are continuing to have their impacts even today . It is our responsibility to care for our planet and ensure our future well-being. Thereby the onus is on us to lend our full support to our children in making this place a better place to live. One’s attitude towards the environment reflects a lot about one’s personality. Not caring about his surroundings makes one look like an irresponsible kid who cannot even take care of himself. Even if you don’t consider yourAUGUST 2011
feature self an environmentalist, there are still good enough reasons to care about the environment. Fortunately,few of us are concerned about the future of our planet and unless and are determined to finding a way of solving the problems that we have created so as to avoid further suffering to the environment. Each one of us, regardless of our age or experience can contribute to slowing down the damage rate and restore some of the losses that Earth has incurred. We cannot simply leave it to the experts to find solutions- we all are responsible to this environment. We must learn to live in a sustainable way, i.e., learn to use our natural resources including air, freshwater, forests, wildlife, farmland and seas so as to ensure that they are not exhausted. As population expands and lifestyles change, we must keep the world in a good condition so that future generations will have the same natural resources in plenty. Havelock Ellis in The Dance of Life, 1923, said “The sun, the moon and the stars would have disappeared long ago... had they happened to be within the reach of predatory human hands”. A major concern of many people is that going green would require a huge change in lifestyle. It may be true in some cases, but it is definitely not the sole truth. Would you rather change a light bulb once a year or once every ten years? For the latter, you should switch to environment- friendly CFL lighting that saves money too. Use less en-
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ergy by switching off lights when not in use, not overheating rooms and not boiling more water than necessary when making a cup of tea! If you use chlorine-based bleach or detergents containing phosphates you are contributing to water pollution. Try using ‘environmentally-friendly’ products which are free from these pollutants. For students, the environment is more vital than anything else. A student encouraged in an open and vibrant environment promoting learning will far exceed his or her own capabilities as compared to a student who lives in a depressing environment. Environment covers a number of areas, the physical plant of the school, the home and the neighborhood the student lives in, the tools the student is given, and the people the student encounters. In order to protect and preserve the environment, it is important to create awareness among the students. They are our future and educating them can only bring about a change. Trees are the largest and the longest living organisms on earth. To grow tall, the trees display miraculous biological mechanisms and a complex chemical factory. It has the ability to absorb water and salts from the earth and transport them up to the leaves, sometimes over 400ft above.Trees hold immense value on earth. Tropical rain forests are of particular significance; although they now occupy less than six per cent of the
land surface of the earth, yet they sustain more than half of the biological species on the planet. Trees help in controlling the temperature of the environment. It can be noticed that areas with more number of trees are much cooler and hygienic for living. Wind speed and direction can be affected by trees. The more compact the foliage on the tree or group of trees, the greater the influence of the windbreak. The downward fall of rain, sleet, and hail is initially absorbed or deflected by trees, which provides some protection for people, pets, and buildings. Trees intercept water, store some of it, and reduce storm runoff and the possibility of flooding. Sadly,trees have been destroyed over the years and this has had visible impacts. Deforestation has been creating innumerable problems such as soil erosion, pollution, imbalance in ecosystem , and global warming .
The trees are the lungs of a city since they provide the much-needed open spaces and carbon sinks. It is important to preserve them and increase the green cover on them if we want to improve the quality of air that we breathe. Not only does this have significance for local people but every tree that grows and survives is fighting the difficult battle against global warming. We need to understand that when we heal the earth – we heal ourselves
Most trees and shrubs in cities or communities are planted to provide beauty or shade. These are two excellent reasons for their use. Woody plants also serve many other purposes, and it often is helpful to consider these other functions when selecting a tree or shrub for the landscape. By planting trees and shrubs, we return to a more natural, less artificial environment. Birds and other species are attracted to the areathe natural cycles of plant growth, reproduction, and decomposition again follow their course, both above and below ground. Natural harmony is restored to the urban environment.
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This shot was taken in the Chakrata region, of the north western edge of the Doon valley, almost at the beginning of autumn when the farmers were just about to harvest paddy. Although it was well into the morning but the light was soft with an over-cast sky and the colors were rich after a early morning shower. The diffused light had created a rich texture on the paddy terraces and I was lucky that the ripening paddy gave rich shades of golden yellow. I used a wideangle lens almost with a birds eye view and the bordering copse of trees gave prominence and framed the image so that the terraces and the surroundings mountain side were both close to the borders of the image. I set a small aperture to ensure enough depth of field and used a polarizing filter to make the sky a richer and darker blue. I have to confess that where humankind has made his or her mark it becomes easier to make photographs. I suppose the ultimate man-made landscape is a garden but even just the presence of a building, wall, track or cultivated field can make it easier to create a pleasing composition with a focus of interest. We tend to impose a sense of order and organization when we take over the landscape, creating shapes, patterns and textures which would not otherwise be there.
DE E P E T E R N ITY J O N AT H AN LIVING S TO N E
CLO U D S I N A D E S E RT MA RMOT LOV E
t TH E DWA RF L I O N
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did his graduation from Garwahal University, Dehradun and Post Graduation in Radio and Television Journalism from Indian Institute of Mass Communication, New Delhi. Thereafter, he was associated with numerous projects about the importance of different aspects of the environment as Director and Director of Photography for the Discovery Network, BBC and National Geographic Channel among other organizations. He is a firm believer in the importance of conserving our environment for a better future and uses film as his medium of spreading this message.
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Ms. Vineeta Bhardwaj
has done her masters in Ecology and Environment and is also a member of ISSRM & IUFRO(International Forum for environment & Forests. Presently working as HOD Environment Science in Col. Brown School, Dehradun and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
s India an overpopulated country? Is its large and growing population a major cause of environmental destruction? It has been repeatedly argued that the population pressure has outstripped the country’s capacity to cope with change. But while there is a plethora of loose statements, there is no rigorous scientific study on the production potential of the country’s lands. The UN study- the most rigorous undertaken as of now, shows that India can feed 3 to 4 times its current population, that being possible only if the government and the people of India can learn to manage their soil and water resources properly.
poor health, scarce social and technical services, illiteracy, slums and further air, water and soil deterioration. If there is poverty and hunger in the country today, it is only because the country’s scientists, politicians and planners have not learnt how to use the country’s environment for a high level of sustainable productivity. Looking at our population figures, India literally added a second India to itself within the last 50 years. All this increase in population called for further industrialization, urbanization and an advancement of the country’s economywhich has greatly destroyed our country’s biomass base.
The “real tragedy of Urban India” is that the ‘texture’ of the built environment of the city is judged not in terms of what it provides to the citizens but rather in terms of the visual picture it presents to a (foreign) visitor. The problem cannot be simply solved by just bulldozing the shacks-by the little doings of the small environment groups, by turning slum dwellers into second class citizens and by planning for the upliftment of the poor while sitting in luxurious penthouses.
Now, questions like what welfare-oriented strategies can be adopted and how to improve upon the state of affairs in these small towns can be dealt with best if the authorities wake up soon to realize what the neglected spheres are. Realizing all the problems above, I will be highlighting each of the problems in detail in the forthcoming issues of Expressions. In addition to this, my forthcoming writings will also focus specifically on women, in the context of the environment.
In India, the newly formed capitals and the NCRs to big metros, like our sweet valley, Dehradun, suffered from high increase in population, migration, environmental degradation, call for hunger,
It is difficult to define quite where “environment” begins or ends for women in India!
sketch by VINEETA BHARDWAJ
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Col Ashwin Baindur
a serving army officer who has a great love for Dehradun having been an alumnus of the Indian Military Academy in 1983-84 and the Wildlife Institute of India at its very inception in the FRI in 1985. The author has trekked extensively with his high point being a visit to the Inner Sanctuary of Nandadevi during an army ecological expedition in 1993. He edits Wikipedia extensively on topics dealing with Indian Natural History.
hings change after dark! The harmless hedge in your garden that beckoned you with its fragrant blooms by day, now threatens to harbour snakes and other myriad creepycrawlies by night. The dull, noxious neighbourhood nallah suddenly metamorphoses into a romantic riverine rendezvous by moonlight. So it is with the Lakes in our campus. Sitting by the lake late at night offers an experience radically different to the familiar scene during the day. At first when you wait on the lakeside culvert, it is dark and cold, the senses seek light desperately and your mind rebels at this seeming waste of time. It takes a good quarter of an hour for the mind to settle down. You get used to the cold breeze, the pupils of your eye enlarge and amplify the scant night-light. Your ears attune to the sounds. And then, imperceptibly, you plunge through the rabbit hole and enter wonderland. Slowly, the world comes alive by night.
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You are alone but not lonely The full moon shines down delicately scalloped by the cirrus clouds high in the stratosphere. A large yellow Venus and a small Jupiter shine high on the horizon. The stars are veiled by the clouds; most will appear once the clouds have crawled past. A soundless blinking pair of lights reveal the path of an aircraft making its way across the peninsula to some magical destination in the Far East. In the distance, around the lake shore and slightly above the waterline, a beautiful necklace of yellow and white pearls amongst the dark trees trace the industrial area around the campus’s perimeter. The shadowy outline of trees on the far bank are silhouetted against the night sky brightened by urban glare. The lake water is dark, patterned with varying shades of black and gray with wavelets in the gentle breeze
rippling the moon on the water. But it is not very quiet. No, peace and quiet comes much later on a Saturday night. The night-wind carries sound faithfully across vast expanses of land. The rattle of a goods train crossing the Mula River and the plaintive hoot of its engine are as clearly heard as the DJ mixing numbers in the Club or the racy Hindi songs at a marriage in the suburb next door. The barking of dogs in faraway Se La road provide a contrast to the miniature fireworks display far away beyond Kasarwadi, no doubt to celebrate a marriage, festival or a cricket victory. But these noises can never drown out the whine of mosquitoes which hover around you. Down the road toward the cadets training complex, a pair of cicadas serenade each other through the night.
the breeze brings on. The nose wrinkles first at the odour of Odomos that surrounds you to keep the rapacious mosquitos at bay. The faint stench of decaying vegetation in your nostrils now penetrates through you. It is only if you walk along the shore that you can partake of the delicate aroma of a nightblossom beckoning its lovermoths to pollinate her. The fish are the first living things to draw your attention. A large splash, followed by a black stain on the water indicate where a large Rohu, probably in his second year, comes up by night to draw in oxygen through his mouth. Confident of safety from the legions of herons, storks and cormorants who wait for them by day, the fish surface every few minutes. That itself is worrisome, is an oxygen deficit building up in the lake? A small plip on the water surface followed by a flickering little flying shadow is the only indication of some small insect bats hawking flies and sipping water from the lake surface. The water birds, who are a riot by day, are quiet except for an occasional squawk from the lake which tells us that
the favourite jester of CME, a purple moorhen, has just offended his neighbour. Now, a pale streak across the sky shows the path of a small meteorite burning to oblivion as it enters Earth’s atmosphere. A few birds can be seen dark stationary silhouettes perched on stumps or on a lonely vigil among the reeds. The duck sleep on the shore with heads turned back and bills shielded in the feathers of the back. A soft chuk, chuk, chuk churrr behind me in the grass beyond the road, tells tales of an Indian Nightjar, a secretive and nocturnal resident of our campus . There is harsh kwiirik chuk in the trees by the roadside. Their author is not hard to find despite his small size. The pintsized Spotted Owlet is perched on a branch with a commanding view over where his prey, the metads and field mice, could gambol. A pair of dark animals with long snouts and long thick tails must surely be a pair of palm civets out to trouble the denizens of the neighbourhood. They pause at a wet trail by the river, but the water-snake which made it has long gone by and
they turn away – they have bigger fish to fry. A soft whirring tells of hawk-moths which have finally arrived at the nightblossoms, plunging their extralong and thin proboscis deep into the corolla of the Raat-kiRani flowers to get at the sweet nectar and leaving behind a few grains of precious pollen for the plant. An ominous shaking in the bush turns out to be nothing more than a cow grazing in areas where she is normally driven off by day.
the butterfly diaries
avigilin dark the
the Butterfly Diaries
The symphony of shadow and sound continues throughout the long vigil and the ambience mesmerises the senses. The soul begins to meditate and just as you reach a state of bliss, rude reality bursts into your presence. In this case, its the increasing rumble of an SUV, no doubt someone returning home from a late party. The vehicle soon recedes with a dull roar, but takes along with it the very special moment. No doubt, you will experience something like it some other day, but today’s deed is done. You will have to return home to a different set of pleasures.
As you move off, the lake and its life continues in its endless cycle of existence unaware of the happiness they have given you.
The concrete culvert feels hard, rough and cold even through the thick denim of your jeans. You turn up your collar to reduce the prickles and shiver
ater is an indispensable element for the survival of humans. With the global population increasing exponentially, water resources are being depleted at an alarming rate. Oceans are sometimes mistaken for available water. Of the total existing water, only 3% is fresh water. On top of which only a petite 0.01% is accessible fresh water. 15 Liters of water per day is mandatory for a person. In some parts of Africa people dispose the same quantity in a month. Presently 1.1 billion of the world population makes use of unsafe resources of water. If the current consumption trends continue, by the year 2025 the global fresh water demands could raise to 56% above the existing supply. This situation could result in “WATER CRISIS”, the term given by the United Nations.
ater is a basic human right and governments are responsible to ensuring universal access to water and sanitation services. The most common worldwide approach is the funding, management and operation of water and sanitation services. This approach has evolved in the course of human history due to the adverse effects on public health when major portions of the population are deprived access to adequate water and sanitation facilities. The public health literature makes it clear that expanding access to clean water has such great human and economic benefits that it is worth considering having governments provide it at a loss, to be subsidized by other sectors that benefit. Yet many governments have failed in their obligation to provide universal access to water and sanitation services. This has enabled the
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World Bank and other international institutions to claim that the public sector is not efficient and cost-effective and the private sector is the answer. To resolve the ongoing crisis, world economies have come across a solution; “TO PRIVATIZE WATER” , promoted as a means to bring business efficiency into water services management. The WTO, World Bank and the IMF are encouraging privatization of water. 90% of the world’s water systems are currently under public control. Water privatization involves transferring water control and/or water management services to private companies. The water management service may include collection, purification, distribution of water, and waste water treatment in a community. But has this policy led to the conception of water as a commodity?
ExpressionSchool Out of the ten major corporate players, the biggest three are: - Suez, Veolia Environment of France and RWE-AG of Germany. They alone deliver water and wastewater services to almost 300 million customers in over 100 countries and are in the race, with others, to reach every part of the globe. RWE, which moved into the world market with its acquisition of Britain’s Thames Water, increased its water revenue by a whopping 9,786% in 10 years. All three are among the top 100 corporations in the world; collectively their annual revenues in 2001 were almost $160 billion growing at a rate of ten percent per year outpacing the economies of many countries in which they operate. They also employ more staff than most governments. Water Privatization increases the cost of water which is becoming unaffordable for the common man. In some cases it violates the Human Rights to access fresh water, for instance wells and rain water collection. Moreover it establishes monopoly of the firm, which tries to extract maximum profits. The supply to water cut on the nonpayment of cash. Around the world, water use by agriculture and industry is roughly 5 to 20 times the domestic use, leading to an inequality in terms of water access. Industry’s growing demand for water sets a pattern of water scarcity even in areas where there is sufficient water for domestic purposes. UN Human Development Program concluded in a report: - “If you live in a slum in Manilla, you pay more for your water than people living in London.” Future war will not be for Black Gold, but for the Blue Gold. However some experts feel that water mismanagement is the major
issue, not the scarcity. Whatever it may be, privatization is not the solution. Most people are not convinced that the answer can be found in ceding their public water systems to private profit-making corporations. Instead, around the world, local communities have developed their own creative water management solutions. Many real and lasting solutions, decentralized and ecological alternatives exist in India as well as the rest of the world. While these alternatives are more reliable and have lower costs, they might not please corporations and politicians since these would strengthen water democracy instead of adding on to corporate benefits and political corruption. So from judging the current scenario, a worldwide crisis over water is imminent.
Namrata has a degree in MBA from Amity University and is currently studying MS Psychology from IPMS (Mumbai). She loves music, creativity, and believes in doing social work. She wanted to be part of ICARE and so upgraded her knowledge in the field and now is one of us.
clean air supply is essential for our own health and that of the environment. But since the industrial revolution, the quality of the air we breathe has deteriorated considerably - mainly as a result of human activities. Rising industrial and energy production, the burning of fossil fuels and the dramatic increase in traffic on our roads, all contribute to air pollution in our towns and cities which, in turn, can lead to serious health problems. For example, air pollution is increasingly being cited as the main cause of lung disorders such as asthma twice as many people suffer from asthma today compared to 30 years ago. The issue of air quality is still a major concern for many European citizens. It is also one of the areas in which the European Union has been most active. Since the early 1970s, the EU has been working to improve
Air: the breath of life
Improving air quality has been a priority for the European Union for many years and, fortunately, it has been one of the success stories of environmental policy. However, although our air is cleaner than it used to be, there are still three big problems to tackle. First, the poor air quality in cities and towns damages our health and makes
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air quality by controlling emission of harmful substances into the atmosphere, improving fuel quality, and by integrating environmental protection requirements into the transport and energy sectors. As the result of EU legislation, much progress has been made in tackling air pollutants such as sulphur dioxide, lead, nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide and benzene. However, despite a reduction in some harmful emissions, air quality continues to cause problems. Summer smog - originating in potentially harmful ground-level ozone regularly exceeds safe limits. Fine particulates also present a health risk which is of increasing concern. Clearly, more needs to be done at local, national, European and international level.
life unpleasant. The other major issues are ozone depletion and climate change. All these problems occur because human activities release harmful substances into the air, but the sources of pollution are different in each case - as are the solutions. We can do something to improve things.
The greenhouse effect is contributing to climate change, bringing global warming, rising sea levels and more natural disasters. What is the greenhouse effect? Why can it be a problem? What are its effects? How can it be reduced?
Poor air quality
Every day, tiny particles and chemicals get into the air, mainly from factories, farming activities and transport. Which pollutants come from each activity? What are their
Air pollution has been one of Europeâ€™s main political concerns since the late 1970s. European Union policy on air quality aims to develop and implement appropriate instruments to improve air quality. The control of emissions from mobile sources, improving fuel quality and promoting and integrating environmental protection requirements into the transport and energy sector are part of these aims. Environment and Health as one of the four main target areas where new effort is needed. Air pollution is one of the issues included under Environment and Health. Whilst overall air quality trends in the Community are encouraging, continued efforts and vigilance are still needed. The objective considered in the Sixth Environment Action Programme is to achieve levels of air quality
Air Pollution policy is characterised by transparency both in the day-to-day proceedings and in the way research data and technical analysis are used for policy developments. Stakeholders have the opportunity here to present evidence and comments,
effects on the environment and our health? What can be done to improve air quality in our cities?
The high-level ozone layer that surrounds the Earthâ€™s atmosphere is vital to our survival. In contrast, ground-level ozone in the air we breathe is dangerous for our health. Why is the ozone layer getting thinner? What are the effects of less high-level ozone and more ground-level ozone? What can be done to improve the situation?
that do not give rise to unacceptable impacts on, and risks to, human health and the environment. The Community is acting at many levels to reduce exposure to air pollution: through EC legislation, through work at the wider international level in order to reduce cross-border pollution, through working with sectors responsible for air pollution and with national, regional authorities and NGOs, and through research. The focus for the next ten years will mainly be on the implementation of air quality standards and coherency of all air legislation and related policy initiatives. Background information on pollutants and their effects on health can be found in the WHO and information on other air pollution effects and data can be obtained from the EEA.
giving as much clarification as possible about the technical justification and political motivation behind them.
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Blue Bottle-Graphium sarpedon from Kallar Reserve forest
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A nature lover and photographer, Thomson Saburaj is from Vithura,Kerala. He likes to explore the bâ€™ful diversity of our Mother Earth and can be reached at email@example.com
Great Eggfly Male
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generation Naman Khanduri
15 years old studying in St. Josephs Academy, Dehradun. With writing as his passion, he utilizes it for his concerns towards the environment and can be reached at NK.NamanKhanduri@facebook.com PepsiCo is an international conglomerate that employs approximately 185,000 people worldwide, and its products are sold in approximately 200 countries. With this clout, PepsiCo has the means and incentive to drive environmentally conscious changes in its industry. Like many companies today, PepsiCo is trying to make the world better a better place, while at the same time helping its bottom line. This dual mission includes meeting consumer needs for convenient foods and beverages, but also reducing the company’s impact on the environment through water, energy and packaging initiatives. Pepsi has made significant progress toward its long-term environmental sustainability goals, which include making the following reductions by 2015, as compared to 2006 levels: • Water consumption by 20 percent • Electricity consumption by 20 percent • Fuel consumption by 25 percent per unit of production • In order to attain these goals PepsiCo has launched a number of initiatives:
• Among these environmentally conscious programs, the company practices a wide variety of recycling strategies: • PepsiCo’s beverage cans are made from 40 to 50 percent recycled aluminum. • At Frito-Lay, cartons used to transport bags
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of chips to retail stores are reused several times before recycling, reducing the demand for paperboard in the U.S. by 250,000 tons annually. • Its paperboard recycling saves more than 4.5 million trees from being harvested and diverts about 500 million pounds of cardboard from landfills annually.
Across the world, PepsiCo has saved nearly 1.5 billion gallons of water in 2007 compared to 2006. To do this, the company uses a combination of new technology; information sharing and employee initiatives that reduce water consumption and increase reuse. In the U.S., the company is using a proprietary air-rinse technology to clean newly manufactured Gatorade and Propel bottles with air instead of water, saving almost 150 million gallons of water per year. Comprehensive “water mapping” was instituted at manufacturing facilities at the Walkers crisps business in the United Kingdom, reducing the amount of water used per kilogram of crisp by 42 percent between 2001 and 2007. Additionally, its India beverage business conserved over 500 million gallons of water in the last two years.
PepsiCo also purchased renewable energy certificates (RECs) to equal 100 percent of
purchased electricity used by all of its U.S. facilities. The three-year purchase of more than 1 billion kilowatt-hours annually became the largest purchase to-date. Additionally, at the Tropicana facility in Bradenton, Fla., the orange juice storage system was converted from an ultra low-temperature freezer system to cool refrigeration that preserves the juice’s freshness without freezing it. Ironically, this change improved the taste of the juice, while it saved the equivalent electricity needed to power over 7,000 houses. At the Quaker facility in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, the development of an innovative milling process saves almost three million kilowatt hours of electricity per year – the same amount used by 250 typical American homes. After improving energy efficiency at about 130 North American Pepsi facilities, PepsiCo International has extended the same energy saving ethos to facilities in China, Chile and Brazil. Pepsi is using using technology from Orion Energy Systems Inc.to improve lighting efficiency, according to a press release. The bottler installed high-intensity fluorescent lighting that should reduce energy waste by 50 percent while providing 50 percent more light. The Nanching, China, facility is estimated to save 202,000 kilowatt hours a year, as opposed to using a different type of lighting. The Santiago, Chile, bottling plant will reduce its lighting electricity consumption to about 106,000 kWh, compared to 335,000 kWh previously.
The Frito-Lay manufacturing facility in Modesto, Calif., inaugurated a solar concentrator field made up of large curved mirrors that move with the position of the sun, focusing the heat into tubes of glass filled with water. The water is converted into steam, which helps heat the cooking oil used to make SunChips. In addition, there are two U.S. PepsiCo manufacturing facilities that use landfill gas, thereby reducing their consumption of fossil source fuels. At several facilities in India, PepsiCo uses local biomass material to run plants more efficiently with less impact on the environment. Similarly, Frito-Lay is installing a new biomass boiler in its Topeka, Kan., facility that will use wood waste for fuel. In Mexico, the Sabritas business conserved enough fuel in one year to serve 3,400 homes.
It was announced recently that PepsiCo will soon begin manufacturing an environmentallyfriendly bottle composed entirely of plant material — this despite Coca-Cola Co.’s recent assertion that it would be years before a 100% plant-based bottle could be produced. Materials used include switch grass, pine bark, and corn husks. PepsiCo plans to eventually begin incorporating organic leftovers from its food business. The Pepsi Bottling Group has received a 2007 Green Power Leadership award from the U.S Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The annual awards recognize the country’s leading green power purchasers for their commitment and contribution to helping advance the development of the nation’s green power market.
As an example of the same thinking in the U.S., PepsiAmericas installed intelligent occupancy sensors on 155 Orion Compact Modular fixtures at a production and warehouse facility in Reserve, La. Because of the effort, an estimated 545,000 kilowatt-hours will be saved. In other energy saving initiatives at Pepsi, the company is using a natural gas heat and power system to bottle beverages at its plant in Queens, NY – saving a potential $408,000 a year.
Expressions has a readership of approximately 15,000 people from all walks of life, and is delivered online to public libraries and is also easily accessible to general population who cares for the environment. Expressions is also sent to consulates, govt. organization in India to help provide information to the people who really matter i.e., policy makers. Our research shows that the vast majority of our readers regularly read the advertising pages, and respond well to adverts for products, courses and services. Expressions online e-magazine that enables you to market products and services to a select audience. The quality and consistency of Expressions ensures a longer shelf life, maximizing the number of times each issue is read and your advertisements are viewed. Sponsorship of Expressions magazine gives your organization an excellent opportunity to both reach this desirable audience and be recognized as a supporter of ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION, thus helping in building your social image as well.
For Advertising rates, visit us at www.expressions.icareindia.co.in or call +919411114921, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org 58
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onScost. 59 AUGUST 2011 atExpressi Advertisers can also advertise, with a link to their website, on our website a nominal
World ' s Oldest Living
has been featured by National Geographic, Animal Planet, ABC’s Extreme Home Makeovers, The International Anti-Fur Coalition, The Paw Project and many other organizations around the globe. A lifetime supporter of animal protection and education, she works with groups all over the world using her imagery to help save and improve the lives of animals everywhere, both in the wild and in captivity. This is a very rewarding way for her to turn tremendous value into her passion for wildlife, photography and art. Visit her photo-gallery at http://www.christinabush.com
heeta is the most famous and beloved chimpanzee of all, bringing great joy and affording millions of people all over the world the chance to re-live wonderful childhood memories of watching and playing “Tarzan and Cheeta”. He is one of the many chimpanzees to play the sidekick to Johnny Weissmuller, legendary Tarzan, in the 1930s-1960s films. Cheeta’s role in these films was to provide comic relief, convey messages between Tarzan and his allies, and occasionally lead Tarzan’s other animal friends to the ape-man’s rescue. This legendary old man was added to the Guinness Book of World Records in 2001 for being the world’s oldest living non-human primate. There is some speculation as to exactly how old he is, but he is believed to be in his late 70s, which is quite old since the lifespan of a chimpanzee in the wild is 40-60 years. Cheeta was honored with
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a star on the Walk of Stars in Palm Springs, CA on March 31st, 1995. Since 2004 there have been several unsuccessful campaigns to secure a star for Cheeta on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and the effort is being continued to this day. Both the International Comedy Festival in Spain and Canada’s Space Channel have bestowed him with Lifetime Achievement Awards. Cheeta’s story is unique and touching. Years ago, Tony Gentry was in the entertainment industry and worked as an animal trainer. Fortunately, he was a kind man and treated his animals well. He acquired Cheeta as a baby to be used in movies and raised him for his entire life. They became like father and son. When Tony became terminally ill in the late 1980s, he knew Cheeta, his best friend, would outlive him. He was terrified that he would be sent to a laboratory or run down zoo or circus. Believing Cheeta would face a horrible fu-
ture, Tony ordered him to be euthanized upon his death. This was not out of cruelty, but because he loved Cheeta so much that he couldn’t stand the thought of his mistreatment or possible torture. Dan Westfall, Tony’s nephew, pleaded with his uncle for many years to let him become Cheeta’s guardian instead. He promised his Uncle Tony he would give him a long, happy and fulfilled life. Tony repeatedly said “no!” It took a long time to convince him to turn Cheeta over but finally he conceded and said his tearful goodbyes to his best friend before he passed away. Dan promised his uncle he would care for the ape, and to this day, he’s kept his promise. They share a relationship and special bond that is like no other. For over 20 years Cheeta has been living out his retirement with Dan at the C.H.E.E.T.A. (Creative Habitats and Enrichment for Endangered and Threatened Apes) Primate Sanctuary in Palm Springs, CA. Cheeta’s name was adopted for the sanctuary to draw attention to animals used in the entertainment industry which were sometimes abused or even killed during their tenures as show props. C.H.E.E.T.A exists to provide surviving animals, which often outlive their usefulness in the industry, with a good home. Cheeta the Chimp is the worldwide Ambassador Chimpanzee for conservation efforts and the welfare of all primates. He represents all the chimpanzees that have appeared as “Cheeta” in the numerous Hollywood Tarzan movies, as well as his other animal friends in the entertainment industry, and those in the wild. The plight of retired show-business chimpanzees is terribly grim. Often they outlive their entertainment careers by forty years or more. When they reach the age of 6-8 years they become very strong and can be difficult to handle. A full-grown chimp can have five to six times the strength of a human. Most end up sad, isolated or in worse conditions. Usually the performers are discarded, and it is becoming more and more difficult to place them in sanctuaries that are full or suffering from financial crises. Ex-performers are usually not accepted by zoos, so unless a home is found for them at a sanctuary, they end up in roadside zoos, as medical test subjects, or euthanized.
Visit Cheeta’s website: www.cheetathechimp.org To view more photos of Cheeta, please visit: www.christinabush.com/cheeta2011.html
Chimpanzee research in the United States began in the 1920s. Research labs are where the largest part of the chimps in America are located. Because their DNA is the closest of all animals to the human species, they are considered the best subjects for medical study. Most of these poor animals live in cages for their entire lives undergoing torture and discomfort. Few of them ever get to feel grass or see the blue sky. The wild chimpanzees, an endangered species native to Africa, are declining in number due to the illegal bushmeat crisis, exotic pet trade, de-forestation, disease and armed conflict.
Cheeta is one of the few lucky ones who have had a fulfilling life full of love. He’s the exception to the rule. Despite battling Type 2 Diabetes and mild arthritis for the past 12 years, Cheeta is in great shape for a primate of his age. His diet consists of lots of fruit, vegetables and monkey chow. He also enjoys the occasional hamburger or hot dog and loves to go for rides in the car with Dan to visit McDonald’s drive-thru. His favorite drinks are iced tea and diet coke. This four foot, one hundred and fifty pound primate is bursting with personality and charm. He enjoys playing the piano, painting, watching television, going for walks, riding in the car, looking at pictures in magazines and waving to the tourists who stop in front of the Casa de Cheeta to catch a glimpse of him. He’s quite the talk of the town! Cheeta spends much of his time painting beautiful “Apestracts” in bright colors. His work has been shown in the National Museum of London and is owned by his fans all over the world. Many of them are sold to raise money for various charitable causes. His dear friend, world-renowned conservationist Dr. Jane Goodall, recently auctioned two of Cheeta’s apestracts for $10,000 each to help the chimpanzee conservation efforts of the Gombe National Park in Africa. This legendary and joyful old man will go down in history and continue to warm the hearts of millions around the world for years to come. He is a true icon.
indianyouth climatenetwork T
he Indian Youth Climate Network (IYCN) is a dynamic network of youth spread across 18 states of India, forming a working platform to address global challenges of environment conservation by engaging public participation as an effective means to spur creative action for a healthy and safe environment. In April, Knowledge Centre produced the second edition of is newsletter “Facts” focused on much debated technology, research and working guidelines on Nuclear Energy. In Gandhinagar, Gujarat, the IYCN team arranged an awareness programme on World Earth Day (22nd April), in collaboration with the Centre for Environmental Education (CEE), The Courtyard Marriott and Airtel. Students participated in the Earth Day
celebration and were educated on interesting facts about different plant species, birdcalls, disaster management, and climatechange during their nature trail through the CEE campus. Not only this, Airtel employees and customers were made to pledge their commitment to at least one activity in the direction of a greener planet and a sustainable future. As a part of this expedition, the Airtel Staff wrote pledges and slogans on dried leaves. The month of May witnessed a plethora of events that projected momentous activity of IYCN. The launch of the Patiala chapter was a significant step that invited a warm response from the people. Inefficient management and improper disposal of wastes can cause severe water, air and soil pollution. The second edition of “Facts” was based on the vast and troubled issue of ‘Waste management’. They key areas covered in this issue were: types of wastes and success stories of how people have approached the practice of waste management. The upcoming volumes of “Facts” will cover advanced topics on waste management with in-depth inforamation about the ways of successfully counteracting the problem more efficiently. The contribution of human activities to the changes in climate is an important issue that finds key importance for addressing conser-
vation of natural resources and protecting environment. Ever thought how our eating habits and consumption patterns influence environment by wastage of natural resources and contribute to climate change? The United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization has scientifically proven that our global livestock is responsible for 18 percent of green house gas emissions. A national-level video competition on ‘Food in focus’ was organized in May by the Hyderabad chapter in collaboration with Humane Society International to bring awareness to this issue. The month of June was even more exciting and earmarked with the celebration of World Environment Day (WED) on 5th June, wherein India played a distinguished role as the Host Country. This year WED addressed the theme of ‘Forests: Nature at Your Service’ as they play a key role in our battle against climate change, releasing oxygen into the atmosphere while storing carbon dioxide with 1.6 billion people dependent on forests for their livelihood. On this occasion, IYCN exhibited its concern and passion for environmental work by various activities carried out by different chapters: 1) The Delhi chapter participated in the Knowledge Park set up by CEE at Dilli Haat. A lot of work by IYCN from the past was put on display. 2) The Hyderabad chapter organized a massive rally from the CM’s Camp office near Walden, Somajiguda to Guru Govind Stadium near Sathyam Theatre in association with WWF(World Wildlife Fund), APPCB(Andhra Pradesh Pollution Control Board) I Hyderabad.
4) Jaipur witnessed a forest-walk and cleanup drive organized in collaboration with forest department officials and eminent environmentalists, as a first step towards similar activities in the coming months. Our other chapters in J&K and Bilaspur also actively organized several activities to ob-
World Environment Day, Hyderabad serve the World Environment Day. June 11 saw the launch of the Bhubaneshwar chapter headed by Mr. Umesh Purohit with a focus on climate-change adaptation and mitigation. With Orissa being on catastrophic edge due to disasters and natural calamities in the past, this chapter will aim to generate advocacy among youths towards climate action by disseminating information via the Knowledge Centre (KC).
3) A painting competition on the theme ‘Go Green’ was conducted for school children by the Gwalior chapter.
IYCN Bhubaneshwar Chapter Launch
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Water cleanup system shut down at Japan nuke plant TOKYO, June 18, 2011 A system to clean massive amounts of contaminated water at the site of Japan’s nuclear disaster was shut down Saturday, just hours after it began full operations, because a component filled with radioactivity much more quickly than expected. Tokyo Electric Power Co., which operates the tsunami-hit Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant, is investigating the cause and isn’t sure when it will restart the system, company spokesman Junichi Matsumoto said.
was expected to last for a few weeks, had already reached its limit within five hours, he said.
Fresh water is being pumped in to cool damaged reactor cores, and is getting contaminated in the process. Some 105,000 tons of highly radioactive water have pooled across the plant, and could overflow within a couple of weeks if action is not taken.
Japan’s March 11 earthquake and tsunami knocked out power to the nuclear plant, incapacitating its crucial cooling systems and causing three reactor cores to melt. TEPCO aims to bring the reactors to a stable cold shutdown state by early January.
In earlier tests, the water treatment system reduced cesium levels in the water to about one-10,000th of their original levels. The system began full operations Friday night after a series of problems involving leaks and valve flaws.
The water treatment system is to be eventually connected to a cooling system so the treated water can be reused. But treating the water will create an additional headache -- tons of highly radioactive sludge will require a separate long-term storage space.
The system was suspended in early Saturday when workers detected a sharp radiation increase in the system’s cesium-absorbing component, Matsumoto said. Radioactivity in one of 24 cartridges, which
In this photo released by TEPCO, the maintenance pit of Unit 2 reactor at Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in Okumamachi. File Photo
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The Fukushima crisis shattered Japan’s confidence in the safety of nuclear energy and prompted antinuclear sentiment. But there are also concerns
Of Japan’s 54 nuclear reactors, more than 30 -including six at Fukushima Dai-ichi and several others that stopped due to the quake -- are out of operation. Economy and Industry Minister Banri Kaieda said Saturday that the rest of the nuclear plants in Japan are safe and their reactors should resume operations as soon as their ongoing regular checks are completed. He said nationwide inspections this week have found that Japanese nuclear power plants are now prepared for accidents as severe as the one that crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi. Resumption of about a dozen reactors undergoing regular checkups is up in the air amid growing local residents’ fear of nuclear accidents. Many of the plants’ hometown officials have said restarting any pending reactors would be impossible amid the ongoing crisis. Kaieda, however, said Japan needs the power. “Stable electric supply is indispensable for Japan’s reconstruction from the disaster and its economic recovery,” he said in a statement. The Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency instructed Japanese nuclear operators to improve their preparedness for severe accidents earlier this month and conducted nationwide on-site inspections this week. The inspections focused on measures to reduce the risk of hydrogen explosions inside containment buildings as one of the lessons learned from the Fukushima crisis, the world’s worst atomic accident since Chernobyl. Japanese nuclear plant operators have already taken other steps to improve accident management since the disaster to maintain core cooling capacity during blackouts.
Energy-Short Japan Eyes Renewable Future, Savings Now
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that Japan will face a serious summertime power crunch unless more of its reactors get back on line.
Chuck McCutcheon For National Geographic News Published July 7, 2011
This story is part of a special series that explores energy issues. For more, visitThe Great Energy Challenge. At Tokyo’s Meiji Gakuin University, professor Keiko Tanaka has been teaching classes with half as much lighting as usual and with less reliance on computers and other electricity-hogging tools. She now often gets out her chalk and eraser to use the blackboard. But with tsunami-torn Japan’s electricity system struggling, she wonders whether her fellow citizens will commit to the level of energy savings the nation needs. “Japan is a country where 18-year-old girls take the elevator to go up a single flight of stairs because they don’t want to sweat,” she said. “It is a country where most toilet seats are heated, and there is an electric noisemaker in the women’s toilet to mask the noise. People have really gotten used to creature comfort at very high energy costs.” Those costs are under scrutiny as perhaps never before, due to the loss of the nuclear plant Fukushima Daiichi and other grid infrastructure damage in the wake of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami. The International Energy Agency(IEA) said in a report this week that Japan “is in the midst of perhaps one of the most severe electricity shortfalls in history.”
In the long run, Prime Minister Naoto Kan has indicated a push for renewables, setting a new goal of 10 million solar-powered homes by 2020, and abandoning ambitious nuclear expansion plans. But Japan—which has no fossil fuel resources of its own—faces an immediate test in the sweltering months of July and August, when air conditioning demand typically strains the grid. Japan’s government says its citizens need to reduce their electricity demand this summer by 15 percent, and in Tokyo, the goal is 25 percent. The IEA says Japan faces a challenge in meeting these goals, since—heated toilets aside—its economy already is far more energy-efficient than that of other nations. To make even greater strides, “Japan will have to undertake deep energy-efficiency and conservation measures,” the IEA report concludes.
Belt-Tightening and Tie-Loosening Faced with potential crisis this summer, Japan has attempted to ramp up the Cool Biz campaign it has promoted since 2005. Re-branding it Super Cool Biz, Japan is calling for offices to keep temperatures at 28°C (85°F), when summer high temperatures in Tokyo can surpass 30°C (86°F) with high humidity. Office workers are encouraged to shed their business suits in favor of sandals, khakis, and pedal pushers. Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry announced it planned to lead by example on energy savings—reducing the use of printers and copiers in its offices, deactivating automatic doors, reducing the number of elevators in services, and adopting early work hours. But some advocates of saving energy already are frustrated. Taro Kono, a member of the House of Representatives in Japan’s Diet, the national parliament, said he has been trying to encourage telecommuting, but the effort has fallen short of his expectations because many businesses remain unwilling to relinquish the ability to physically see what workers are accomplishing. Japan’s energy consumption per unit of GDP is 20 percent below the world average and 30 percent below that of the United States, according to the World Resources Institute’s widely followed EarthTrends data. Japan’s Agency for Natural Resources and Energy (ANRE) estimates that Japan improved its energy efficiency 37 percent in the past 30 years.
Solar panels like these on the rooftop of Itochu headquarters in Tokyo would become more common in Japan under Prime Minister Naoto Kan’s ambitious renewable energy plan. But this summer, the emphasis is on conservation. Photograph by Tomohiro Ohsumi, Bloomberg/Getty Images
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The IEA, in its report entitled “Saving Electricity in a Hurry,” said it remains unclear how much farther small and medium-sized Japanese businesses will cut demand voluntarily. The IEA said many energy-saving measures at those companies require shifting operations to evenings and weekends—something that will require unions’ approval and could disrupt many parents’ schedules.
Post-Tsunami, an Anti-Nuclear Wave
They have argued that Japan’s rich geothermal resources—with nearly 200 volcanoes and some 28,000 hot springs—could provide more than Adding to Japan’s electricity shortfall woes is a 80,000 megawatts of generating capacity, enough growing issue due to the nation’s long-standing requirement that its nuclear power plants undergo to meet half of the country’s electricity needs. In routine maintenance every 13 months, with politi- addition, a 2009 study published in the proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences estimatcians in the plants’ regional prefectures providing ed that the country’s land-based wind resources final approval before restart. The restarts typically could provide another half of its electricity. are approved routinely, but all have been delayed Japan has aggressively sought to upgrade its solar since the Fukushima Daiichi disaster. More as a potential—a cause taken up by Kan before he result of these holdups than earthquake damage, survived a no-confidence vote earlier this month. only 19 of Japan’s 54 nuclear reactors are now in The country has set a goal of increasing solar phooperation. tovoltaics, mostly in rooftop panels, from 3,500 megawatts in 2010 to 53,000 megawatts by 2030. Kyushu Electric, which provides power to southBeyond Kan’s target of powering 10 million homes west Japan, received a welcome bit of news this by 2020, there would be enough solar photovoltamonth, when a local mayor approved its proposal ics to power 18 million Japanese homes by 2030. to restart the reactors at its Genkai nuclear power Masayoshi Son, the founder of Softbank Mobile plant in Saga prefecture. Those reactors had been and the country’s wealthiest man, has drawn shut down for maintenance since last winter. The substantial attention for his plan to start a research final decision lies with the prefecture’s governor, Yasushi Furukawa, who expects to make a decision foundation for renewable energy, bolstered by millions of his own start-up money. So far, 35 of by mid-July. Japan’s 47 prefectures have signed on as founding members. Energy experts say that if Furukawa decides against a restart, other governors could follow “The means to do this are certainly in abundance,” suit—setting in motion a chain of events that said Andrew DeWit, a professor of public finance could idle all of Japan’s nuclear reactors within a at Tokyo’s Rikkyo University who studies the year. country’s energy situation. “This sounds like idealistic talk, but I really think Japan, given that it’s got Trade and Industry Minister Banri Kaieda this all this pent-up demand for renewables, could see week sought to reassure citizensof the reactors’ in over a year or two a truly astounding emplacesafety, pledging that the government would order ment of renewable capacity.” stress-testing at all the plants.
Renewable Energy’s Rising Sun It remains to be seen whether the stress testing in the coming weeks will succeed in reassuring Japan’s citizens on nuclear plants’ ability to withstand earthquakes and tsunamis, but it is clear that opponents have been able to seize on the Fukushima disaster to urge rapid expansion of alternative sources.
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Japan has scrambled to repair infrastructure and increase its imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG), but the problem could get worse, the IEA warned, due to political backlash against nuclear energy, which before March provided one-third of the nation’s electricity.
DeWit acknowledged, however, that Japan’s nuclear energy proponents will not abandon that energy source easily. “There’s all kinds of rhetoric—that wind farms are too noisy, they kill birds and so on,” he said. “The energy economy of this country is going to be decided over the next few months . . . The key things seem to me to be the increasing heat of summer and how disastrous this nuclear problem is.”
“We are going to bear the heat of summer with round paper fans and Japanese folding fans,” he said. Tschiya sees his fellow citizens neither resisting conservation nor enthusiastically embracing it. “It’s more like people think that it’s ‘sho ga nai’ in Japanese, meaning, ‘We have no choice, we have to accept,’ ‘’ he said.
Afghanistan Bright Spot: Wildlife Surviving in War Zones Brian Handwerk for National Geographic News Published July 12, 2011
Scientists weren’t sure that these species had survived in Afghanistan since the last surveys of the region in the 1970s. “It’s great news to learn that these animals are still here,” said Peter Zahler, who launched the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Afghanistan program in 2006.
Bears, Leopard Cats, and More Between 2006 and 2009, teams spotted the species via camera traps, studied DNA evidence left behind in droppings, and looked for animals during transect surveys through the country’s last forest ecosystems. For example, in the case of the black bear, scientists took 45 photographs—as well as 5 cameratrap pictures—observed 18 individuals, and collected 16 scat samples over the study period. The leopard cat was more elusive, with only three individuals photographed and very few caught via camera traps. The most commonly recorded species was the Indian crested porcupine, with either direct or indirect evidence of more than 280 individuals over the study period. Also oft-observed were the red fox, the grey wolf, and the golden jackal. Other species detected included rhesus macaques, yellow-throated martens, and even a few domestic cats.
A system to clean massive amounts of contamiDespite decades of deadly fighting among humans, many of Afghanistan’smammals are Unexpectedly, the scientists also saw a few comdoing surprisingly well in the country’s remaining mon palm civets, catlike mammals that had never forests, according to a new study. before been documented in Afghanistan. Recent biological surveys in the remote and wartorn Nuristan Province, which lies along Afghanistan’s eastern border with Pakistan, have revealed sightings and other strong evidence of several species, including Asiatic black bears, graywolves, and leopard cats.
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The rugged forests of Nuristan are probably the most biologically diverse part of Afghanistan, in part because Indian Ocean monsoons bring moisture that’s lacking in many other areas of the country, noted Zahler, who was not directly part of the study team.
Afghanistan Animals Not Out of the Woods But the good news comes with several caveats. For example, satellite studies show that Nuristan’s forest cover has been greatly reduced during the past two decades, and it’s still disappearing today. “If this continues, I think we’ll see the last of the larger animals disappear from the area,” Zahler said. “We were delighted that there is wildlife here, but its long-term survival is still very much in question.”
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With the future of Japan’s energy supply in question, the focus for most citizens now is on cutting demand. Kazuto Tsuchiya, a student at the University of Southern California who is spending the summer with family in Suzaka in central Japan, said his relatives put off an earlier decision to buy an air conditioner.
Some deforestation is the result of people cutting trees for fuel or building materials, but the bulk of forest loss is driven by timber industries, which are able to operate with little oversight or regulation in the politically unstable region, Zahler said. The violence has “created a lack of management,” he said. “It’s not complete lawlessness, but a lot of cultural institutions have been degraded to the point where it’s more of a free-for-all—which I think has greatly accelerated the drain on natural resources.”
A common palm civet spotted in Afghanistan. Photograph courtesy WCS Afghanistan
And when local people sell timber rights for a pittance, Zahler added, it’s not only animals that suffer—people also lose precious resources. “With the forest clear-cut, they lose the ability to build houses and find firewood in the winter. They lose mushrooms and pine nuts and everything that they depend on for local sale and for food,” he explained.
For example, Hanson has co-authored a study showing how wars are usually located in speciesrich areas.
“The communities understand this and want help with the sustainable management of these forest resources, and we’ve made some inroads in Nuristan communities [to] help them manage these resources, on which they are directly dependent.”
War and Conservation: Unlikely Partners In places like Afghanistan, where human misery is a major concern, the environment often takes a backseat.
But conservation biologist and author Thor Hanson, who was not involved in the recent study, said conservationists need to work in conflict zones, because these regions harbor some of the planet’s most important habitats.
“If you look at the overlap between biological diversity and the locations of wars in the second half of the 20th century, we found that 80 percent of those major armed conflicts occurred within recognized global biodiversity hot spots,” he said. Hanson added that this correlation means some of the world’s most important conservation work is based in dangerous areas, where most people don’t—or can’t—give environmental concerns top priority. “The practical reality for conservation groups is that we pull out of areas when things get hot. But where groups have tried to stay engaged by supporting local people, we find that it can actually
The Wildlife Conservation Society’s Zahler agreed that keeping Afghanistan’s wildlife safe is an important way to help keep the peace. “It’s not just about bears and leopards—it’s about natural resources that people depend on, and wildlife is just an example. Losing those resources means that communities are going to fall apart, because they won’t be able to support themselves. “So helping them manage those resources is an important part of maintaining stability and security in a country like Afghanistan.
Leopard killing: Orissa government to move contempt against four accused Bhubaneswar, Jul 26 Source: http://www.newkerala.com
The Orissa government will move a contempt of Court case against the four people, accused of killing a leopard near Patia in the outskirt of the capital city in January 2001 if they failed to appear before the Court on August 4 next. Orissa Forest and Environment Minister Debi Prasad Mishra told mediapersons here that a case was filed against six people u/s 9 48(a) and 52 of the Wild Life Protection Act for beating the wild animal to death on January 13, 2001.
the court of the SDJM, Bhubaneswar. The lower court gave them bail with a condition that they would cooperate with the authorities in the investigation of the case. But out of the five while only one accused was cooperating in the inquiry while others were not cooperating with the investigation even after letters sent to them. Mr Mishra said contempt of court case would be moved against them if they did not appear before the court on August 4 as directed in connection with the case.
Tiger cub killed on Corbett road July 30, 2011 12:50:04 AM PNS | Dehradun A tiger cub was run over by a speeding vehicle on the road passing through Dhela range of the Corbett National Park on Friday. Corbett director Ranjan Kumar Mishra said a female tiger cub — aged about three months — was found dead on Dhela Road. The cub had sustained major head injury, leading to massive bleeding. Park authorities are conducting a drive to check all vehicles at nearby resorts for signs of blood to identify who’s responsible.
While one of them was arrested, five others absconded soon after the incident. The five accused later moved the Orissa High Court for anticipatory bail.
Mishra added that the numbers and timing of vehicles passing through the checkpost on Dhela Road used to be noted during the night but due to the uncooperative attitude of vehicle users, among other factors, this system had become lax.
But the High Court directed them to seek bail in
It is expected that checking will be stringent once
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again, and all vehicles on the road after 7:30 pm will be identified to help narrowing down on suspects in case of deaths of wild animals. Honorary Wildlife Warden of Corbett and National Tiger Conservation Authority member Brijendra Singh said that considering the death of another tiger on Ramnagar road the previous year, the need for controlling speed and number of vehicles using such roads was essential.
But out of the five while only one accused was cooperating in the inquiry while others were not cooperating with the investigation even after letters sent to them.
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make a real difference in biodiversity outcomes over the course of a conflict,” he said.
Mr Mishra said contempt of court case would be moved against them if they did not appear before the court on August 4 as directed in connection with the case.
messageon independence day by
Editor, Sanctuary Asia
On Independence Day, 2011 I would like my country to awaken from the bondage of false ambition. I would also like my country to remember that Gandhiji is not merely a brand to be used to embellish our currency notes and mouldy government walls. His real gift to India was his presence as an environmental prophet and we, his wards, have forgotten all that he taught about simplicity and about caring for nature. This is not an altruistic outpouring. In an era of climate change, this is a survival imperative. We either imbibe Gandhi’s strategy for survival, or perish at the altar of that false god -- ‘Development’.
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Muse gives a gourmet touch to one of the most cherished cuisines in the world. The butter chicken and chicken tikka masala have made their way from the streets of Amritsar and Patiala all the way to Times Square and Buckingham Palace. Come and cherish the great heritage of desi ghee and makhan. Just a word of caution, don’t forget to exercise afterwards.
HOTEL INDERLOK, ANEKANT PALACE, 29 RAJPUR ROAD, DEHRADUN FOR TABLE RESERVATIONS 99279 66344
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Gourmet goes to Punjab
We at icare-india, will facilitate our readers to ask opinions from our Law Experts regarding the social and legal issues of the country. In our ‘Ask the Experts’ column we have Mr. Vaibhav Gangiwale, Associate, from Khaitan and Co., Mumbai and Mrs. Namrata Walia, Human Resource, Kocchar and Kocchar to offer insights and suggestions on various current issues. Mr. Vaibhav graduated from Nalsar University of Law, Hyderabad in 2011. He has been actively involved with various research projects at Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, Indira Gandhi National Forest Academy, Dehradun, National Judicial Academy, Bhopal, Indian Institute of Forest Management and M.P Human Rights Commission. While, Mrs. Namrata Walia is a regular columnist for ‘expressions’. She has a passion and flair for writing on societal issues of the country. She is pursuing her PHD from Mumbai in Psychology and currently working in Kocchar and Kochhar, New Delhi. Each month few questions will be selected and FREE legal advice will be provided. So feel free to ask questions regarding any legal or social problems and we would be happy to bring their views to you in regular column. Mail your questions at
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