India is gifted with lush green tropical forests and an annual monsoon that revives life in most parts of the country. Yet, the country is reeling from a persistent drought, while many of our forests are losing ground to rapid development. In the midst of this change, let us look at the state of environmental education in the country. In this story, Shaurya Rahul Naralanka, a lecturer of environmental science at Manipal University reminds us of the challenges and opportunities in teaching about nature.
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Human beings, in their brief history, started off as hunter–gatherers hunting animals and birds, or collecting fruits and nuts to eat. They then invented agriculture, a revolutionary transformation from ‘collecting’ food to ‘growing’ it. Suddenly, acquiring food, which was one of the most important task of the early man, became a breeze. Today, in the era of technology, food production has reached new levels and so have our ways of handling the produce.
The Indian subcontinent is prone to a large number of natural disasters. The 58% of the landmass is prone to earthquakes and 12 % to floods. 68% of country’s agricultural land is prone to droughts. Apart from these, bad policy making and unplanned development has also contributed to man-made disasters in the country. On the occasion of International Day for Disaster Reduction, learn about the the measures the country has already taken and what more can be done, to reduce the devastation caused by disasters.
Come summer, and we all struggle with availability of fresh and safe water. Have you ever wondered what can be done to conserve enough water when it rains, so that we don’t have to suffer from water scarcity in the summers? India is the largest groundwater user with unchecked groundwater consumption by farmers, industries, urban and rural citizens alike. While the country supports 18% of the world’s population, it has only around 4% of the freshwater resources.
As a part of the Student Conference on Conservation Science held on the 23rd of September in Bangalore, Artecology presented a unique combination of performing arts and science. Titled "How to be a Fig", this movement art presentation was a hit among the attendees that included ecologist, conservationists, artists and dancers. How exactly was the performance? Read on to know.
In the present time, with increasing demand for transportation fuels coupled with declining reserves of crude oil, scientific communities are forced to focus on renewable fuels. Although biofuels obtained from energy crops such as food and non-food energy crops act as renewable fuels, various issues such as food versus fuel debate, biodiversity loss and their effect on the land has shifted the idea of energy production towards other alternative biofuel producers like waste materials and microorganisms.
Climate change and anthropogenic pressure are affecting natural environments world over. In this scenario how vulnerable are forests? If we keep growing at the rate we are growing now, what impact will it have on our forests in the years to come? Scientists from Indian Institute of Science and Wildlife Institute of India explore these far reaching questions in an Indian context. Their findings show that many forests are under considerable stress. The researchers say a perception change can help protect our forest.
Climate change is here and governments around the world are trying their best to stem its debilitating impacts. REDD+ (Reduce Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation), a programme to encourage the sustainable management of existing forests that take in large amounts of greenhouse gases, is a step in this direction. However, there are technical difficulties in measuring the effectiveness of REDD+.
Different parts of the country was inundated with floods this year, while other parts continue to face rainfall shortages, leading to drought situations. The culprit behind the disparity may be the sudden, extreme rainfall events we have been facing. Warming temperatures leading to extreme events may be affecting the overall rainfall the country receives says this new study.
Qissa-e-Sanjan, or the Story of Sanjan, records the epic tale of Parsi migration. It describes how a section of Zoroastrians left Iran to escape the Islamic conquest, and found India’s shores at Sanjan in Gujarat. Instead of a welcome they were presented with a full glass of milk, which symbolically suggested that there was no space for the newcomers. The priest then added a spoonful of sugar without spilling the milk, a promise that the Parsis would assimilate with the local community. Like sugar in milk, the Parsis found a new home.