March 04, 2008
“Authorities in China recently
launched a crackdown on Web sites that openly trade in animal products made from threatened species, experts say.
The move follows pressure from two international wildlife advocacy groups, which found thousands of items made from protected species for sale on major Chinese Internet auction sites in 2007………
IFAW’s Gabriel noted that the two most popular wildlife products traded online in China
are elephant ivory and items made from tiger bone.
Ivory products include decorative and religious-themed carved figurines, chopsticks, and jewelry. They are sold among collectors, who are mostly white-collar and well educated, Gabriel said.
Tiger bone, which has been banned in China for the past 15 years, has been used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat rheumatism.
Some manufacturers still produce tiger-bone wine and claim that it has magical powers and benefits for the skin.
The market for tiger-bone products generally consists of lower-income people in rural areas who shop at local vendors, though a small market for tiger-bone products exists online, Gabriel noted.
Rhino horn, tortoise shell, and antelope horn are also banned from being traded online.
One of the key challenges to policing online trade in illegal products, the conservationists note, is Chinese vendors’ ability to tweak the language to manipulate descriptions of their products.
"In other languages it might be difficult, but Chinese is tonal, and if you change the tone it could be a different word," Gabriel said.”
National Geographic News 29 Feb 08
February 25, 2008
The Cambodia Experience
Wildlife Alliance launched the acclaimed Kouprey Express mobile environmental education unit to teach Cambodian villagers of wildlife and forestry laws and help them manage their resources while protecting areas rich in biodiversity. The Kouprey Express
is a bus, outfitted with engaging and interactive education and outreach tools, that travels throughout rural Cambodia to villages, schools, and community centers.
The Kouprey Express spends much of its time working in communities that
are adjacent to national parks, protected forests, and other key centers for wildlife and biodiversity. There, communities are highly dependent on the environment, which provides much of their food, water, shelter, and traditional medicine. Because these communities
are so reliant on natural resources, it is vital that Wildlife Alliance help them to live sustainably alongside their forests, water supplies and wildlife.
To date, Wildlife Alliance’s Cambodia Conservation Program has reached more than 50,000 children and adults and provided schoolteachers in rural Cambodia with world-class environmental education curricula. The Kouprey Express theme for 2007-2008 is Our Forest,
Our Future. Through films, presentations, classroom exercises, interactive performances, and question-and-answer sessions.
February 15, 2008
Waste to health bioconversion
The theory propounded by Dr. Uday Bhawalkar that excess nitrates affect abiotic and biotic phenomena which was a Phd Thesis in IIT Mumbai, has since been patented and is awaiting commercial exploitation.
Pollution reduction through a natural enzyme based bio catalyst, "Biosanitiser", which Dr Bhawalkar developed as a proprietary technology, has been patented in India nad America.
Treatment of waste generated at household, farms and other biological waste generating sources must include segregation, methanation and stabilisation along with the use of Biosanitiser to treat waste in a holistic manner.
February 15, 2008
Clean cellulose from biomass wastes
Khaitan brothers have developed a clean technology, which enables clean cellulose from biomass wastes like rice, wheat straws and bagasse. Modified Kraft Chemical Recovery (MKCR) technology was developed in a straw pulping mill making paper. The black liquor
coming out as an effluent from pulping of above wastes contains caustic soda, lignin and silica besides lime. MKCR enables:
· recovery of caustic soda,
· silica as a dry precipitate,
· energy from the lignin, which gets burnt as an unique Wet Mix Fuel in a cogeneration biomass boiler, raising steam and electricity which meet process needs and also a surplus which can be wheeled to the electricity supply grid.
· Lime is also recovered.
It uses biomass wastes like rice husk or straw to enable this recovery process of chemicals and energy. Hence all process needs will be met by biomass wastes and products are clean cellulose, caustic soda which gets recycled, silica as a dry precipitate, lime
and energy from the lignin. The whole process would be net zero in GHG emission and energy positive in terms of energy balance and material balance.
Clean cellulose can be converted into many value added products as a basic carbohydrate. Up to 90% of the clean cellulose short fibres can be used in blends to make photocopier grade paper (Map Litho), substituting wood fibres from trees.
Clean cellulose can be hydrolysed into simple sugars. In fact a technology patent has been applied in India, which has already established in lab scale, conversion of alpha cellulose and hemi cellulose into C6 and C5 simple sugars. fermenting the sugars
into ethanol is a simple step. Hence this process is unique in enabling clean cellulose production as a first step and then conversion into ethanol with higher process efficiencies in hydrolysis and fermentation stages. While Khaitan brothers have established
the basics of the technology, it needs a pilot plant study before engineering and building a full scale commercial plant.
Present stage of development of the technology: They require funds as equity and / soft loan and invite an entrepreneurial partnership.
Contact: Mr Dinesh Khaitan: firstname.lastname@example.org at New Delhi
February 15, 2008
Man and the Biosphere
According to a recent declaration adopted by UNESCO’s ‘Third World Congress of Biosphere Reserves’, it underscores potential for action of biosphere reserves to address new challenges such as the loss of traditional knowledge and cultural diversity, demography,
loss of arable land and climate change.
It also urges the development of cooperation between the Man and the Biosphere (MAB) programme and UNESCO’s other intergovernmental scientific programmes.
Meanwhile, in the meeting, the members also adopted the Madrid Action Plan, mapping out the MAB programme’s strategy for 2008-2013.
The Action Plan called for concrete activities, which include facilitating integration of urban areas of the reserves, organising training related to the different ecosystems, establishing pilot reserves in order to evaluate their economic contribution at
local level, involving the private sector and promoting the biosphere reserve brand for products.
February 14, 2008
See the ad we created for your club!
The tiger in the ad is photographed by
February 12, 2008
WWF ( World Wide Fund for Wildlife) came out with the following advertisments ( Animals painted on closed fists)
Wildlife SOS, another NGO brought out a telling ad as follows
WPSI (Wildlife Protection Society of India) grabbed the opportunuty to create awareness about tigers among cricket fans. These were some of the catchy slogans which were heard and seen during the ICL Indian 20:20 championship from 30 november -16 ecember
LET THE TIGER PLAY
YOU’VE GOT CRICKET
DON’T MAKE US YOUR GAME
YOU DON’T NEED TIGER BONE WINE
TO BOWL A STRAIGHT LINE
THAT’S A 4
DON’T SILENCE THE TIGER ROAR
I ndividuals to
C onserve NOT
K ill our
SHERON KO NA MARO
NEHI TO SHAIR MAR JAYEGA
PEELE PAR KALI DHARI KA
BAGH RAKHWALA JAL JEEVAN KA
BOUNDARY FOR YOU WE NEED SOME TOO
LEAVE US OUR FORESTS
THE FINGER IS UP
THE TIGER IS DOWN
BAT 4 THE TIGER
GO OVER THE TOP
FOR THE TIGER
IN OR OUT?
February 07, 2008
This forum seems to be the right platform to share some of the comments made by ICSSR(Indian Council of Social Science Research) on my report "E-governance for conservation" This report formed a part of my thesis submitted to ICSSR titled’Growth of entrepreneurship
in the Country with the growth of Information Systems’.
The report is available online and can be read at the following link.
Comments and Review by ICSSR
"The proposed model for e-Governance for the Ministry of Environment and Forest is one of the major dimensions of the thesis, which merits commendation and makes the thesis a qualitative work. Cost-Benefit analysis for the suggested model will further enhance
the quality of the thesis.
A public project analysis considers the worthiness of shifting resources from the private sector to the public sector and the extent to which a public project should be pursued when its benefits exceed the cost. Many other factors besides a benefit/cost
analysis influence the final decision about funding public projects.
The model recommended to generate entrepreneurship in the rural area can also be evaluated by cost-effective analysis. The measure of effectiveness which is non-monetary in character can be judged taking into account the reduction in rural unemployment,
increase in the wildlife, decline in deforestation and criminal activities and improvement in the environment-Jaan, Jal, Janwar, Jungle, Jameen.
Further , it has been proposed that the model can be worked out by public private paertnership. The model on application needs a good amount of investment. Basically it is an economic decision, which is usually subject to an environment of uncontrollable
influences. The longer the planning horizon, the greater the exposure to chance events. Inputs and outputs for short-term investment alternatives are usually subject to less variability than the long- term investment proposals. Risk anlysis is a mechanism,
which can be used fruitfully when significant outcome variations are likely for different future states and meanigful probabilities can be assigned to these states. The time to consider risk is before one makes a commitment to a course of action. Perhaps
a portion of the potential profit should be traded for partial immunity to risk. The rural people and the people of the nearby villages of jungle are to be ducated to develop individual skills and temperaments and the only way they can behave impetuously
when exposed to the demands of such situations. The properties of materials vary over time. environmental factors are never constant and economic conditions change irregularly.
Natural resources are threatened by the demand placed on them by the poor. Despite several efforts aimed at addressing the problem, environmental degradation continues. Hence, the goal is to achieve poverty reduction through wise, sustainable and economic
use of natural resources and the environment. Strategies include strengthening the legal and institutional framework to encourage local communities to control and sustainaby manage natural resources, develop alternative livelihood strategies and create environmental
I request the esteemed members of this community to respond and add your comments to finally arrive at a workable model for E-governance for conservation.
February 07, 2008
Have you ever wanted to view your electricity consumption at a click of a button and understand your total cost involved in consuming electricity? Have you ever wanted to manage your peak load efficiently and be responsive to utility’s Time of Day tariff
programs? Have you ever wondered if you can somehow turn on / off your electrical appliances remotely?
connectgaia.com leverages advanced metering, sensor, proven IP communication technologies and a robust IT backbone to bring intelligence into electricity consumption. The solution integrates the power and internet highways. Ably supported
by intelligent meters and a host of wireless sensors, connectgaia.com will empower electricity users to efficiently manage their power consumption over the web.
connectgaia units – gaiaeco (mother) and gaiacell (child) – with Demand Response capabilities, arm consumers with information on their electricity usage that in turn allows them to realign consumption patterns. By curbing their power use during peak periods,
they not only save money but also help to ease the demands on power plants and distribution lines.
These connectgaia units though not energy efficiency devices in themselves, enable power users to set up informed energy efficiency and conservation measures by using state-of-art technology and sensor networks. connectgaia.com is the platform that will
make possible an era of energy efficiency where better energy management is institutionalized and sustained among electricity customers.
February 06, 2008
Herbs from Forests
Converting traditional medicinal knowledge into fortunes—this is what a group of women in a remote village in Chhattisgarh are doing. In the sleepy village of Donga-nala in Korba district, about 160 km from the state capital, Raipur, these women run a unit
for making medicines from herbs from surrounding forests.
In just a year, they have earned Rs 15 lakh. From being impoverished agricultural labourers, they have become prosperous entrepreneurs.
After sussing out demand, the group started preparing 30 products, of which medicines for cold, diabetes, joint pains and indigestion, and herbal products such as tea, facepacks, toothpaste, honey and chyawanprash are much in demand. “The compositions are
certified by a registered ayurvedic practitioner and approved by a government lab,” says Patel. The group’s yagna products are also in demand—selling up to 1,100 kg a month, fetching about Rs 75,000. “We are self-sufficient now,” says Uma Yadav, secretary
of the Self Help Group.
Read the full story at