ECOLOGY AND ENVIRONMENT
- Ecology is the study of inter relationship of living organisms with one another and with the environment they live in. Environment refers to the surrounding in which the organisms (animals plants) live. It comprises of all biotic factors such as air, temp, rainfall, soil, H2O etc.
- This relationship has been severely effected by man’s intervention in environment this interference is largely due to increased agricultural and industrial activities. This intervention has led to
1) Deforestation 2) Depletion of Biodiversity 3) Change in climate of the Earth.
- Deforestation refers to destruction of forests for timber, fuel, and for open spaces to be used for agricultural and Industrial purposes, without planting new trees to replace those that a lost or without wishing on a cycle – the natural forests to regenerate has a leads to flood, drought a loss of wild life. It also leads to increased concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere intensifying the global warming effects altering the rainfall and temp.pattern of the region.
STEPS TAKEN BY GOI
New Forest Policy:
This policy was enunciated in 1988. It stipulated that atleast 1/3 rd of the total land mass of India shall be brought under the forest cover to maintain optimum ecological balance and it would be done by bringing 80% of the area in hills and 20% of area in plain under forest cover.
- It is also called as community forestry a extension forestry it was initiated in 1978 by UNDP for the purpose of growing or raising fast closer to pop. centres so that these tree varieties would help in providing food, fuel, fibres, fertilizers and fodder and reducing the existing pressure on the forest cover. It seeds to ensure the participation of the local people in rising and maintaining the forest for their own for this reason, in this scheme, forests are called for the peoples of the people and by the people.However, in the 1st phase, this scheme did not succeed much.
- Non-scientific selection of spices of trees (Eg.) Eucalyptus (exotic tree) was selected was a fast growing spices which mainly beneficial to the Industry not to pep lox pop. This fundamentally change the character of scheme from social presty to commercial forestry.
- This scheme largely remain the scheme of the Government without creating much interest among people. It lacked people’s support.
- The scheme could not prevent cattle grazing and cutting down of tree branches (i.e. lopping).
- This scheme was relaunched in 1992 under which the local spices of trees were preferred for selecting such tree varieties and ensuring people’s participation.
These are unique and representative ecosystem of terrestrial and coastal area that are internationally recognised within the framework of UNESCO’s man and biosphere Programme (MAB) started in 1985 for which UNESCO extends technical and financial assistance to the member countries in promoting and maintaining biosphere reserves in promoting and maintaining biosphere reserves.
A biosphere reserves has 3 objectives
- In situ conservation of biodiversity of natural and semi natural Ecosystem and landscapes.
- To contribute to the sustainable eco.development of the human population i.e. living and around biosphere reserves.
- To provide facilities for the long term ecological studies environmental education,research,training and monitoring.
To achieve its objectives a trosphere reserves is classified into 3 differences
- From centre to periphery, it is divided into core zone, buffer zone, transitional zone
- Unlike Brosphere reserves which are internationally recognised, National Packs recognised at national level by exacting a law by parte and wild life sanctuaries are recognised at state level.
- Unlike National parks and wild life sanctuaries biosphere and considered human beings as an integral components of the ecosystem to be conserved therefore it does not exclude HB from the – conserved.
- The 1st biosphere reserves notified and established was Nilgris BR in 1986. It is spread over the regions of Kerala, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. It include world famous silent valley. It is present in the Kindle bills of Kerala in the Western Ghats India is one of the 18 Mega Bio-diversity rich regions of the world. India possess 6.7% of the total biodiversity was 3 of its MBR are namely
- 1. Southern part of Western Ghats
- 2. Northern East region of the country
- 3. Sub-Himalayan belt
- Silent valley is the only equatorial evergreen rain forest in the country as it possesses abundant sunshine and receives rainfall for not less than 280 days in a year therefore of abundant heat and moisture it has rich Bio-diversity of both plants and animals. Some of the unique animal species that is found here
- 1. Malabar squirrel
- 2. Lion tailed masque
- 3. Nilgiri-thar (deer)
- UNESCO has also recognised silent valley as a would heritage site therefore of the richness of its biodiversity. It derives its name of the fact that even though it is rich in insect life, it is free from insect noise of cricket, cicada.
Depletion of Biodiversity:
Biodiversity refers to sum total of all the speices of plants and animals on the planet that is it includes all the genetic resources of the earth about 6% of the biodiversity of the earth is found in the tropical rain forests. About 70% of the total biodiversity is available in developing countries.
Importance of Biodiversity:
- Every genetic resource has certain specific characteristics of its own therefore the genetic material of Biodiversity can be used to obtain various valuable products that is essential for human survive leg. Biodiversity provides food, seeds, medicines, and specimens to be used by biotechnologists to develop new genetically modified organisms possessing certain special features Biodiversity also regulates hydrological, Ecological and overall climatic cycle on which human life is dependent.
- So far, man has not full understood the uses of Biodiversity (eg.) it was recently discover that scrab does not suffer from bacterial discases. This Info. can be exploited by H.B to improve their health standard. However, there fore of unsustainable or exploitative use of these biological resources, in dew course of time, these resources will become earliest and speices once lost is lost forever as at present the H.B. is no position to recreate biodiversity. We can only utilise it for improving our quality of life.
- Since during countries need technological and financial strength to consume their biodiversity and developed countries and reluctant to share this, there is an impending danger on sustainability of the Biodiversity.Moreover developing countries must be helped to solve the problems of poverty and illiteracy to make their conservation programmes more effective.
Convention on Biodiversity:
It was the 1st international effect to recognise and protect the interests of the developing countries in the use of their Biodiversity. It was signed in June, 1992 during East summit conference at – where 175 countries including India & USA attended the conference. This convention is legally binding on its member countries it recognises that Biodiversity provides food, medicine, energy and other household products of daily survival and to Biodiversity is improving for regulating the hydrological, ecological climatic cycle on which human life is dependent this convention puts forward 3 goals.
- Conservation of Biodiversity that includes plants, animals, micro organisms, crop varieties and stock breeds.
- Sustainable use of biological resources of the earth.
- Equitable sharing of the benefits that would accrue from such a use.
CBD recognises that developing so have the right over the use of their Biodiversity and the benefits generated by the use of such resources. Such Bio Resources can be utilised only with the prior consent of the providing countries that too on the basis of mutually agreed benefit sharing mechanism. It also specifies that industrialised countries shall have to extend technical and financial assistance to developing countries of their Biodiversity and community knowledge and practices of the indigenous people should be respected.
GENETIC COLONIALISM / BIO PIRACY:
- Genetic Colonialism / Bio Piracy is an expression used in the field of patenting of Biological products. It means obtaining patent for a biological product by a company or an – for commercial exploitation of the biological product under guise of an invention or an improvement of the product that is known for characteristics during to its place of origin and the traditional community knowledge of the native people. It complaints to the rights of traditional people who have actually natured there products over the ages for which they will now have to shall out royalty to these companies.
- The continuously of Genetic Colonialism come to light when a US based multinational co. known as W.C. grace in 1916 obtained a patent to the bio- pesticide made for from the neem seed of the inhabitant place.
It refers to increased trapping of terestial radiations there fore of 6 Green House gases that result in increasing mean annual global temperature of earth surface. The 6 GH gases are CO2, KH4, oxides of Nitrogen, Sulphur – fluoride CFC / Hydro FC (highest heat trapping SF6 capacity), Perfluoro carbon and water vapours naturally present.
Implication of G.H.E.
- The most serious impact would be interims of melting of Polar ice gap caps that would result in increasing the level of sea. The sea level would also increased – of warm water expansion — on expansion, it occupies more space Acc. to IPCC, the sea level would increased by about 8-88 cm by the end of 21st century. This would pose serious danger specially to low lying areas of the earth nearly 1/3rd of the total land mass may be submerge. (Eg.) certain areas such as Bangaladesh, coral islands, soloman islands, Tabeti (South -) Maldives, Lakshadweep, Andaman & Nichobar Islands.
- Warm H2O will also form a lid over oceans that would seriously disturb the process of formation and circulation of ocean currents that essential for recycling of ocean resources. It would dec. photosynthetic activity increasing the biological demand endangering the aquatic life seriously.
- Tropical regions would bear the man burnt of global warming. The areas would experience extreme weather conditions in the form of heavy rainfall intense heat wave, frequent floods, droughts forest fill and service cyclonic storms. These condition would also result in increasing various vector borne diseases in the form of epidemic endangering human health.
Farmlands would be converted into acid regions and deserts would start blooming because of alteration in temperature rainfall pattern. This transformation would result in making all those agricultural practices that has been developed over the ages –
- All these factors may result in large scale migration of human population. This migrating pop would have no respect to the polity, social and economic structure of the countries it is migrating to this may seriously effect world peace order.
Tell tale evidence of Global warming:
Larson ice shell:
- The Northern most tip of Antartica has already developed huge cracks because of which large chunks of ice sheets have broken and drifted away into the oceans exposing the underneath sea for the first time in last 20,000 years. The exposed sea would absorb more heat than the ice sheet that cover it increasing the temperature further and resulting into a cascading effect that will melt more ice. Such an event was projected to occur by the end of – decade of 21st century and since this is already taken place. It indicates that G.W.is taking place at an accelerated pace.
- There is an increase in the intensity and frequency of elmino of the coast of Peru. This was considered the severest El- nino ever visited El-nino used to appear once in 7 years and last for 12-15 months but now it has started appearing once in 5 to 7 years lasted for about 15-18 months.
- In 1998, large scale destruction of coral life was noticed in Gulf of Member and Palk Strait of the coast of Tamil Nadu in India. Since coral self is extremely sensitive to temperature, its heavy destruction indicates something seriously wrong with the temperature. There has been a constant inc. in the summer temperature of both North and South hemispheres. The summer of 1998 and 2002 Were the two hottest summer recorded since 1860. The 10 hottest summers during this period have all been recorded after 1987 and 9 one of them are after 1990.
- There has been a constant inc. in the height of sea waves. Since 1990, sea waves have increased by about 2-3m and the dangers of this inc. are already witnessed by certain low lying countries specially in South Pacific eg. Tahite, Solomon Island their coastal areas have been experiencing submergence and due to advancing sea.
Measures to reduces GHG :
- UNFCCC – United Nations Frame work of convention on climate change was taken up during the Earth summit conference in June 1992 at Rio, Brazil. It was a – global attempt to – the emission of GM gases of developed countries. Under this conventions, developed countries voluntarily agreed to reduce agreed to reduce agreed to reduce the omission of their GHG below their 1990 levels by the year 2000. The developing countries did not have any such obligations under this convention.This convention also provides for holding annual conferences of the member parties to negotiate and to arrive at a consensus so that a legally binding convention can be achieved. As part of UNFC conference if parties held at Berlin but it was during only 3rd conference of parties that was held in December 1997, Kyoto Japan a consensus could be achieved to impose legally binding obligations on the industrialised countries to cut down the omissions of their – Under this protocol,the developedncountries(39)as a whole undertook to reduce the omission of their 6GHG by atleast 5.2% below the 1990 level by the commitment years of 2008-12.The developing countries did not have any obligations under the protocol but they were required to accessed developed countries interms of achieving their targets. To ensure this co-operation, Kyoto protocol provides for a clean development mechanism under which a developed country can set up various Joint complementation L-friendly projects with the help of a developing country in the developing country and whatever omission reduction achieved, that would be taken as credit to the target of developed country. In this mechanism a develop country also purchase certain certified omission reduction CERs. credit that is awarded by clean Dev Mechanism Executive Board (CDMEB). These credits are approved by a web of operating authorisation. (Eg.) India has developed certain eco friendly tech. such as in produce of cement, steel and conversion of biomass to energy. These CERs can be sold to various developed countries to achieve their targets. This is also called as carbon trading. The national behind CDMES that G.HG emission reduction achieved anywhere on the earth is a good thing Kyoto protocol was supposed to enter into force 90 days after its ratification by all these developed countries who responsible for making atleast 55% of the total GHG omissions of developed countries as a group Russia ratify this protocol on 22nd Oct2004 making it enter into force on 16th Feb 2005 Appraisal. This protocol has been described as socially unjust as it is not based on the percapita emission concept which is necessary. abou 20% of the world’s total population that resides in 10 developed countries,is responsible for almost 80% of the totals GHE emission whereas on the other hand, remaining 80% of total population in developing countries makes 20% of the remain GHG emission. The percapita emission level in Western Europe and Northern part in America, the PCE of 30.40 times were more than that of developing countries are guilty of indulging in extravagant utilisation of natural sources to fulfil theirrecovery-based demands.Hence, this protocol is socially unjust.
- Under CDM, the developed to can take credit for the GHG emission reduction achieved in a developing to with its assistance without making a significant domestic contribution, a developed country is still able to fulfil its obligation.
- With the Eco. collapse of East while USSR, the level of GHG emission of developed countries has already come down by 4.5% of its 1990 level ….. in red terms, developed countries have to reduce their GHG by 0.7% which can be easily done with the help of CDM.
- The seller of CERs may sell at its own terms and conditions, the protocol that is suppose to be ecologically effective is – more as a trading agreement rather than an ecological agreement.
India and China are leading the developing countries in their stand against the developed countries. India wants that an official distinction be recognised in between the luxury based emission of the North Survival based emissions of the South. The developing countries also favoured that any international arrangement to resolve the problem of G.W. should be based upon the per capita emission norms. According to India such an arrangement alone can leave the world away from C based energy generation and consumption pattern to a C free world.
- A new Asia Pacific Partnership on clean development in climate was announced by Australia, Japan, China, South Korea, India, USA in Virticane, Laos on 28th July 2005 during ARF (Asian Regional -) meeting. According to India, this partnership is aimed at developing deploying and transferring – C friendly cost effective more efficient technologies for the purpose of pollution reduction, energy security and climate change concerns in consonance with the obligation of UNFCCE.
Depletion of Ozone:
- O3 is a tri-atomic allotrope of O. It is a bluish poisonous gas. It is also used as disinfectant. O3 is present at a height of 40 kms from the surface of the earth. O3 is important for two significant contribution in the atmosphere
1) It traps harmful UV says from sun to reach earth surface.
2) It helps in transferring heat from stratosphere to troposphere where this heat is meant 4 weather phenomenon O3 remains in a dynamic = of formation and destruction if not disturb otherwise by human intervention O3 is constantly formed by the action of UVC rays and destroyed by UV-B rays. UV-C, UVC bring about atomisation of moleculer O where the atomic and moleculer O joint together to terms the O3 molecule. In this process, UVC is completely absorbed with the O3 layer. UVB brings about its destruction and is also able to reach earth surface if it is already depleated thereby causing damage to life and property UVA rays are able to pass through O3 only to get absorbed in troposphere.
- Human intervention has resulted in release of various O3 depleting substances in atmosphere. These ODS are man made substances that rest with O3 and destroy it. They are CFCs – man made gas which is used as a refrigerant (Poly Methane Foam PUF).
- CFC is a highly stable compound as it is extremely inert or inactive near earth surface, it does not cause any harm to life but being light, it is able to rise up to reach stratosphere where it breaks down into its constituents to release chlorine atom. Released reacts with O3 to form an unstable intermediate compound known as chlorine monoxide that breaks down to – Cl + O atom.
- A single Cl atom is sufficient to break down 1 Lakh molecule and this destructive effect com. continue upto 100 years.
- ODS – hatogens also called as Halons. Halogens are used in fire extinguishers also used in aircrafts, space rights, ships and submarines. Their O3 depleting capacity is nearly 3-
10 times more than that of CFCs.
- CCL : It is mainly used in making paints and pesticides. It is also used as a solvent in various pharmaceuticals agency and its capacity to destroy O3 is equivalent to CFCs.
- Methyl Chloroform : Also used as a solvent in various precision mental works and as O3 depleting capacity is 1/10th of CFCs.
Ozone depleting substances found in nature:
Oxides of N destroy O3 molecules these oxides a produced when N reacts with O in the presence of high temperature eg. Forest Fire, Volcanic eruption, exhaust fumes of high flying aircraft.
- Ozone Hole refers to thinning down of O3 and even complete disappearance of O3 over a part of the earth surface. At present, the O3 H of the phenomenon is a temporary phenomenon mainly witnessed over the poles. It starts appearing in the winters and reaches its largest extent in early spring to disappear in summer only in reappear in winters. The OH is the largest over Antartica in Octobers and over Arctic circle in April. It was not discovered over Antartica in 1985 and has been increasing in size since then. Now it has reached to the extyent of covering almost the entire continent. Due to extreme weather conditions over Antartica, OH is bigger in size here than it is over North Pole. Except for poles nowhere is there is complete depletion of O3. Sunlight is needed 4 creation of O3 and since over poles, there is no sunlight for 6 months during winters, O3 is not created but only destroyed by the various O3 depleting substances that has been brought have and – crystallised to melt and deplete 3 gradually by arrived of summer O3 formation rest acts in the OH created in winters is replugged to be refumed not winter.
Replacements to O3 depleting substances
1) Hydro CFCs (HCFC – 22)
It is an unstable compound – of presence of H – bonds. It breaks down easily in the lower atmosphere liberating most of its Cl here only and less amount of Cl reaches higher up to destroy O3. Its depleting capacity is 10th of CFC. therefore it is seen as an intermediate but not a permanent solution. Moreover HCFC is most suitable 4 large scale refrigeration therefore its use demands large scale compressors for which domestic refrigerators need to undergo reengineering.
2) Hydro Fluoro Carbon (HFC – – b4A)
It is 100% O3 friendly as there is no – but it is expensive, inflammable. toxic and a powerful GJ gas.
3) Propane & Butane :
They are readily available. They are cheap as they are easily obtain from nature they can also be used as excellent refrigerant but they are highly inflammable and poisonous.
NH3 is also cheap and an effective refrigerant. It is highly corrosive in native there fore it should be candled carefully. Indian Institute of Chemical Tech. Hyderabad has developed a process of — (HFC – B4a – R B4a) only 4 multinational co. from Japan and USA and France has this tech.
EFFORTS TO SAVE OZONE:
- Effects to save O3 started from early 70’s leading to adoption of Vienna convention in 1985 but a more significant effort was in the form of Montréal protocol in 1987, which was undertaken by developed countries to phase out their emission of CFCs completely by end of December 2000 except for their medical use. They shall also phase out other O3 depleting substances except 4 their use in extreme situations.
- The Montreal Protocol was amended by London protocol in 1990. It provided 4 establishment of a multilateral fund which will be contributed by developed countries and will be utilised to Montreal Protocol. This fund will be utilised in during – to develop the technical for manufacturing replacements to O3 depleting substances by 2010.
- Subsequently in Copenhagen in 1993, the member parties of Montreal Protocol agreed to advance the deadline of phasing out of O3 depleting substances by 5 more years.
India and Montreal Protocol :
India signed Montreal Protocol in 1992. In 1998 the ministry of Environment and forest drafted various rules and regulation with the objectives of phasing out O3 deputing substances. According to these regulation, India shall phase out its O3 depleting substances by 28 February 2003. India has already phased out balagens of balons and in the way of phasing out CFCs also. According to the MOEF, rules and regulations the manufacturing of aerosol products excluding their medical use in the firm of metre dose inhalers shall be prohibited, — manufacturing of mobile Acts and from products including various be prohibited. These regulations the manufacturing, consumption, scales export and import of CFCs to those countries that – party to Montreal Protocol beyond the stipulated tone period. – since 1998 no fresh investments for expansion of the existing capacity of O3 depleting substances.
In order to income Public awareness about the need to protect the O3 layer 16 September is world wide is observed as International O3 day.
- Sustainable Development is the one in which natural resources are utilised rather than exhausted or exploited.Basically, Sustainable Development manages economic growth in a way that it does not result in damage to the environment Sustainable Development depends upon the principle that given enough time nature is able to recycle its consumable resources by balancing the ecological requirements of the society with ecological concerns. Sustainable Development seeks to satisfy the need of the people without endangering the potentialities or for future generation as it seeks to integrate both economics and environmentalism into a single dynamic force Sustainable Development.
- Sustainable Development does not mean no growth but it means the kind of growth that humanity can live with forever Sustainable Development admits material growth is a necessity for any society to grow but simultaneously it also admits that to achieve this material production, mankind can’t act irresponsibly to nature that is the present generation can’t progress at the expense of future generation.
- Sustainable Development certain parameters that necessary to provide eco-growth along with maintenance of environment these parameters include populate stabilisation.
- Development of green economic friendly technologies,their deployment and transfer to developing countries, efficient use of natural resources that would reduce production of waste and would prevent pollution, Integrated environmental system Management (IESM). Therefore, achievement of Sustainable Development by taking case of both economical growth and environment there is required to being a significant attitudinal, social, cultural changes in the population.
Obstacles in the path of sustainable development
There are 2 major obstacles
1) External obstacles 2) Internal Obstacles
1. External obstacles:
External obstacles is in terms of vast economical disparities between the developed and developing countries where the material wealth is mostly concentrated with the developed countries creating wide disparities in the consumption pattern. About 24% of the world’s population living in 10 industrialised countries has excess to almost 84% of the total energy whereas the remaining 76% of the total population of the world living in developing countries sustain itself on 60% of world energy resources. Therefore this unsustainable exploitative and – consumption pattern places enormous strain on world’s natural resources. The developed all are further reluctant to give away their exploitative development. Moreover, they also refuse to on up their responsibility to maintain the environment the success of Sustainable Development also depends upon the investments that are support to be made in Rural and Development of new C friendly techniques and sharing with the developing countries. The North is reluctant to extent the technical and financial assistance to the South (developing countries).
2. Internal Obstacles:
Internal Obstacles is in terms of the fact that the majority of the wealth generated by a country is consumed by the minority of its population. This sets an unsustainable – distorted consumption pattern within a country and in the success of Sustainable Development depends upon the success of sustainable consumption particularly by developed countries and eradication of poverty and illiteracy in the developing countries. It success also depends upon the necessary changes to be bought about in present globalisation pattern as in its present firm. It supports the extravagant consumption pattern of the North.
World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD)
- Sustainable Development was an International attempt that took place on 26 August 2002 at Johanesberg to promote the concept of Sustainable Development at par with other international issues the by issues discussed were.
1. Concerns about climate change : This summit strongly urged developed countries to ratify the protocol.
2. 2nd Was Trade, it reaffirmed the idea of phasing out agriculture and trade related subsidies.
3. In the field of energy :
The summit called for setting up a specific targets in terms of investments for Rural and Development of renewable or non-conventional energy sources by 2015.
4. Water and Sanitation :
It reaffirms the goal that there should be 50% reduction in the 2 billion population of the world that lochs portable water.
5. Biodiversity :
It reaffirms the need to reduce the loss of speices by 2015 without assigning any figure.
6. Good Governance :
It emphasised the need to fight – to promote democracy and to establish rule of law.
- The greatest achievement of this summit was that it established Sustainable Development at par with other International issues such as peace and human rights and terrorism etc. However of vast differences in between North and South countries the conference could not put forth a solid programme for the implementation of goal that was set agenda 21 taken up during the Earth summit (RO). It also failed to develop new sources for raising funds for the implementation of various decision and goals taken up during the summit.
- It was most important document concluded during the Earth summit. It is regarded as the blue print for the development of 21st Century. It major theme is to make 21st Century Environment friendly to make Earth a better place to live in more inhabitable.
- It identifies poverty and underdevelopment as the greatest threats to environment. To fulfil the goals of Agenda 21, It was estimated that about 600 billion US $ will be required on annual basis. For this purpose, develop countries undertook to contribute atleast 0.7% of their GDP towards a planet protection fund known as Global Environment Facility. This facility was created at the latest of developing countries as they believe that though it is a common responsibility to save environment, it should be shouldered differentially that “Polluter Shall Pay”. This fund is kept at the disposal of IBRD (World Bank) where the appropriation out of this fund is based on weighted — voting principle the one who contributes more exercises more right over this fund. To make expenditure out of this fund democratic – one man one vote principle so that this fund can actually be utilised for the very purpose it was created.