Tiger Task Force Report

Review by National Board for Wildlife

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 23, 2007

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 Project Tiger has been reviewed by the Tiger Task Force constituted by the
National Board for Wildlife, Chaired by the Hon¹ble Prime Minister. 

  • The National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) has already come
    into force w.e.f. 4th September, 2006. 
  • Apart from above, all the Tiger Reserves have been evaluated by a panel of independent experts based on a set of criteria (45) developed by the World commission on Protected Areas, as adapted for Indian conditions.  The evaluation has been peer-reviewed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN).  Both the assessment as well as peer-review have been placed in both the Houses of Parliament.
  • The process of All India estimation of tigers, copredators and prey animals using the refined methodology, as approved by the Tiger Task Force, is ongoing in collaboration with the Wildlife Institute of India.  The said process on completion, would indicate the status of tiger population, its copredators, prey animals and habitat in the country.
  • Assessment of tiger habitat status in the country at Taluka amplification in the Geographical Information System (GIS) domain in collaboration with the Wildlife Institute of India. Comparative appraisal of forest cover status in and around tiger reserves (upto a radial distance of 10 kms.), in collaboration with the Forest Survey of India for evolving reserve specific restorative strategies involving local people in the peripheral / buffer areas.
  • Bilateral agreements have been signed with Nepal and Republic of
    China for controlling trans-boundary illegal trade in wildlife.

Source: Information  given by the Minister of State in the Ministry of Environment and Forests,  in a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha on March 9, 2007

Environment Awareness

I=PAT

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 23, 2007

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The organized environmental movement has been almost totally ineffective at protecting the environment since the mid 1980s. 

 

The big groups have been successful at protecting some resources in certain regions—staving off the drilling for oil in the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge and gaining more wilderness designation in the Green Mountain National Forest are two notable successes in the U.S.A—but in terms of protecting the major ecosystems and the general environment, they have largely failed.

 

There are many other environmental crises including loss of species diversity, loss of natural resources like wetlands and forests, and the collapse of ocean fisheries. 

A large coalition of environmental groups in 1970 endorsed a resolution stating that, “population growth is directly involved in the pollution and degradation of our environment—air, water and land—and intensifies physical, psychological, social, political and economic problems to the extent that the well-being of individuals, the stability of society and our very survival are threatened.”

The connection between population growth and the environment is perhaps best expressed through what is known as the foundation formula or the environmental impact equation,

I=PAT.

What this says is that any environmental impact is the result of three factors; the size of the population, the affluence or wealth of that population and the technology or type of consumption that the population spends its wealth on.

What has happened is that environmental organizations have disregarded the population part of the equation and focused almost entirely on the technology part of the equation, be it driving more fuel-efficient cars or encouraging “smart growth.”

 Source: The Environmental Magazine

http://www.emagazine.com/view/?3734

 

 

Wildlife Poaching

Lion Claws

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 21, 2007

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Lion claws are cult symbols in and around Saurashtra.  There is a belief system built around them.  Fishermen wear them before venturing out to sea, apparently to make them "lion -hearted". 

The forest department destroys all the claws collected from the carcasses of dead lions so there is no official route of getting these talismans.  Forest officials do not believe locals in Saurashtra would be hunting lions for their claws and claim that mos of the claws are fake.


The Kathi Darbar Community wear them as status symbols.  Sold at prices rising up to Rs 25,000 per claw, they are flaunted in pendants worn on bare chests. 


Conservator of Forests, Junagadh has powers to apprehend those wearing lion claws. But there is no information of anyone having been booked so far, over the years.

source: Times of India, 13 April, 2007

Environment Awareness

Jal Satyagraha Launnched in Delhi

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 21, 2007

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Yamuna is in danger and no single organization or person can handle 
this. Everybody in Delhi has to come together to tackle its problems.
Instead of laying a concrete jungle, we should build a natural jungle of
10,000 hectares on the flood plain of the river. The people should help
in reviving recharge structures and distributaries of the river. The
Ridge should be declared as a recharge zone and the baolis and talaabs
that existed there should be restored. The ghats on the Yamuna should
also be restored.


The Jal Satyagraha 2007 was also launched at the event. It aims to raise
awareness among school and college children. It will create awareness in
both rural and urban India on the optimal use of water and need to
recharge to groundwater. The Satyagraha will work with media to raise
public awareness on water-related issues. It will advocate water as a
basic human right and hold camps in different states. The campaign will
also discourage people from using bottled water and drinking soft
drinks. Lastly, it will work to stop the privatization of rivers and
other water sources.
Source:owsa@oneworld.net

Anthropomorphism

Raven world’s second smartest creature

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 20, 2007

Blog

Birdbrain is no longer a sign of stupidity; indeed it could be a sign of surprising intelligence. 


Scientists Bernd Heinrich and Thomas Bugnyar reveal a series of experiments that back the idea that ravens are the brainboxes of the natural world. "These birds use logic to solve problems and some of their abilities even surpass those of the great apes."


The experiment they outline involved ravens that were allowed to sit on perches from which pieces of meat dangled from string. To get a treat, a raven had to perform a complex series of actions: pull up some of the string, place a loop on the perch and hold it with a claw, then pull up another section of string and hold that loop on the perch. By repeating the process half a dozen times, a raven could reach the end of the string and get the meat.


Source:  Guardian Newspapers Limited April, 2007

Climate change and Global Warming

Delhi

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 19, 2007

Blog

The CO2 levels are going up by 2ppm per year, with Delhi adding 963 new cars daily to the city’s fleet. To ensure that the temperature does not go up by more than two degrees by the turn of the century, we have to ensure that CO2 levels stay below 450 ppm. Vehicular traffic is the single largest contributor of CO2 in the atmosphere.

Even the trees lining the road cannot help unless we reduce the number of vehicles.

Source: Times of India, May4, 2007

Climate change and Global Warming

A political challenge?

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 18, 2007

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"Developing  world can leapfrog to a new energy future-from no fuel to the most advanced fuel. The biofuel can come from non-edible tree crops-jatropha in India, for example-grown on wasteland, which will also employ people.

This fuel market will demand a different business model. It cannot be conducted on the basis of the so-called free market model, which is based on economies of scale and, therefore, demands consolidation and leads to uncompetitive practices. In today’s model, a company will grow the crops, extract the oil, transport it first to refineries and then back to consumers.

The new generation biofuel business needs a model of distributed growth in which we have millions of growers and millions of distributors and millions of users. Remember, climate change is not a technological fix but a political challenge. Biofuel is part of a new future."

-Sunita Narain
Source: http://www.downtoearth.org.in/cover_nl.asp?mode=2

 


 

Climate change and Global Warming

Godavari Basin, IIT Delhi and UK

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 17, 2007

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A regional climate change study is being done on the Godavari (Andhra Pradesh) basin by IIT Delhi and UK based scientists.

The Godavari basin extends over three million sq.km and is nearly 10 % of the total area of India. Because of its size, it provides a diversity of eco systems that will enable scientists to carefully choose sites to study interlinked water dependent eco systems like forests, wetlands and cropping systems.

Source: Hindustan Times, 23 March , 2007

 

Wildlife , Forest Laws

Constitutional Provisions in India

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 17, 2007

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Article 48A and Part IV A of the Constitution grant environment supremacy over development. The Constitution, on a sensitive provision in Article 48A states:"The State shall endeavour to protect and improve the environment and to safeguard the forests and wildlife of the country."

Article 51A (g) creates a fundamental duty in every individual to obey the mandates of environment and ecology.

Wildlife , Forest Laws

Environmental Law

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 16, 2007

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Environmental law in India has developed partly in response to demands by environmental groups and partly as a result of international conventions. The laws to protect bio diversity were a direct outcome of the International Convention on Biodiversity.

After the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro, a number of laws were changed or new rules drafted to conform to international agreements. Local environment groups played an important role in bringing in the Coastal Regulation Zone Rules, an outcome of growing awareness of the impact of development along the coasts of marine resources.

Sourece: The Hindu, 23, March, 2007




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