Tag Archives: Environment

What media says about ZED way of living…

Patterns of Light

 

From outside, the Biodiversity Conservation India Limited (BCIL) office in the plush Sadashiva Nagar in Bangalore looks like any other building. But once you step inside, you realise that it is pleasantly different. A part of the premises is lit up and powered by wind energy, while a large number of flowerpots and a staircase, work as makeshift air-conditioners. And a machine that resembles a water dispenser converts moisture in the air into clean drinking water…

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Slow poisoning of soils

It’s a strange world that still seems to require scientific evidence to show that synthetic fertilizers slowly poison the soil’s health though they may increase farm productivity in the short term.

One large study done by the Indore Agriculture College in 504 villages found 70 per cent soil samples deficient in sulphur and 50 per cent deficient in zinc after use of synthetic fertilizers. Continue reading

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Need to kill 10,000 sq km of forests and rich lands

Savandurga hillside forest, Bangalore, India

Image via Wikipedia

The six sectors occupied in 2009 about 0.7 million hectares [or 7000 sq km]. This included land leased out to mine coal, bauxite, limestone, and iron ore.

But this might be a gross underestimation because in the past, industry has acquired far more than what is required for power production facilities. Golf courses are not uncommon in industry premises and golf turf consumes 30 liters per square foot of grass. Continue reading

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Freshwater consumption will more than triple by 2030

Freshwater consumption will more than triple in the next two decades and reach 18,000 million cubic meters in 2030. This is water that is lost and has serious social and environmental implications.

The power sector will account for the major share of freshwater consumption; its share will reduce from 90.5 to 85% in 2030. Water use will increase most dramatically in the iron and steel sector, in the cement sector and the aluminum sector. These sectors will see a six-fold increase in water use.

In low carbon freshwater use in 2030 is about 10% lower than in business as usual, this is largely because of reduction in power generation from coal-based power plants that one hopes will happen.

Pic: osawaterworks.com

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Save energy by law, lose carbon credit

Energy saving light bulbs for sale.

Image via Wikipedia

There is an absurd irony to how subsidies and carbon credits work.

A piquant situation is now arising in the case of CFLs which enjoy a carbon emission reduction credit of as much as about Rs 100 per lamp with a mapping of energy saving over 7 years. Companies have been able to sell these lamps at Rs. 15 with the rest of the money being acquired as CER credit for the energy saving achieved over a cycle of 7 years. Continue reading

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Jumbo deaths in Tanzania: is poaching metric accurate?

The poaching metric in places like Tanzania, as in most parts of Africa, is window-dressed. To claim that their elephant population is in good health it’s calculated at the ratio of carcass to live elephants. Tanzania claims it has a poaching metric of just two per cent. Continue reading

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Listen to the land breathing…

Try this sometime. Find a starry night, go outdoors, lie down with your ear to the ground on a quite piece of land, and listen to the soil respiring, beyond the sound of your own breathing.

The soil-to-air cycle of carbon dioxide or soil respiration is a major source of CO2 emission. Continue reading

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Too small, too many

India comprises just 2.4 per cent of the world’s inhabitable geographical area. Yet it supports 16.7 per cent of the world’s population. This leads to tremendous pressure on its natural resources.

(Pic source: internet)

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Borewells add arsenic to your rice

A tap with a trickle in a Bellary village that was severely affected by October 2009 floods.

That borewells have depleted groundwater reserves sharply since the 1980s when they were brought on a largescale is something we all know. What is not known is that borewells also increase the groundwater contamination levels and increase the threat of fluorides and arsenic.

An estimated 1000 tonnes of arsenic is pumped up by tubewells and borewells annually and added to fertile soils in many parts of the rice bowls of India. Continue reading

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There are no forests in most of Bihar!

We know the world forest cover is at about 31 per cent. We know, too, that the average in India has fallen to about 21-23 per cent in the last 50 years. Felling of forests since 1860 has claimed nearly 60 per cent of what existed then.

A shocker is that Bihar is one of the states with the most scant forest cover: 17 out of the 38 districts in the state have no forest cover at all. In North Bihar, the forest cover is a mere 1.92 per cent.

(Photo source: internet)

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