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ENVIRONMENT - April 2019

Apr 2019

Apr 10, 2019

Glaciers Shrinking Much Faster

  •  Earth's glaciers are melting much faster than scientists thought. A new study shows they are losing 369 billion tonnes of snow and ice each year, more than half of that in North America.
  • The most comprehensive measurement of glaciers worldwide found that thousands of inland masses of snow compressed into ice are shrinking 18 percent faster than an international panel of scientists calculated in 2013.
  • The world's glaciers are shrinking five times faster now than they were in the 1960s. Their melt is accelerating due to global warming, and adding more water to already rising seas. 

Apr 08, 2019

NGT Directs CPCB to Prepare 'Noise Pollution Maps'

  •  Asking the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) to expand its noise monitoring mechanism beyond seven cities, the National Green Tribunal has directed it to prepare 'noise pollution map' of the entire country and identify city-specific hotspots for remedial action plan by June 15.
  • Currently, noise monitoring mechanism is functional in Delhi, Mumbai (including Navi Mumbai and Thane), Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Lucknow.
  • The CPCB may consider setting up such mechanism in all the cities which are found to be having noise level above approved threshold.
  • The CPCB in its analysis report of ambient noise level data of 2011-14 period for these seven cities had observed maximum violations of prescribed limits in Mumbai followed by Lucknow, Hyderabad, Delhi, Chennai, Bengaluru and Kolkata.
  • Noting adverse effects of noise pollution on human health, especially infants and senior citizens, the NGT asked state pollution control boards (PCBs) to undertake noise level monitoring in conjunction with police departments and take remedial action.

Apr 07, 2019

Night Herons at Yamuna Park

  •  The otherwise quiet and tranquil Yamuna Biodiversity Park (YBP) has, of late, become lively with the quok and woc of black-crowned night herons.
  • It is during this time of the year the birds breed and the heronry becomes lively with the calls of the nestlings and adults.
  • Experts said that even though black-crowned night herons had almost vanished from the Yamuna floodplains long ago, possibly due to the loss of habitat and the river's rising pollution levels, they have started setting up colonies over the past few years and have been breeding in the YBP. Now, their population is growing every year.
  • In 2016, park authorities spotted around 2,000 nests, which shot up to at least 2,500 in 2017. This year, scientists are expecting around 5,000 nests in the park.
  • Park authorities are now planning to monitor the birds — particularly the black-crowned night herons — around the clock to understand their nesting ecology and feeding habits.
  • Even though the huge colony has several species such as snake birds, cormorants, egrets, pond herons and grey herons, blackcrowned night herons dominate the park's heronry.

Apr 04, 2019

Air Pollution Shortened Lifespan

  • According to a global study, the current high level of air pollution has shortened the average lifespan of a South Asian child by two-and-a- half years while globally the reduction stands at 20 months.
  • As per State of Global Air 2019, exposure to outdoor and indoor air pollution contributed to over 1.2 million deaths in India in 2017.
  • In India, air pollution is the third highest cause of death among all health risks.

Apr 02, 2019

Nine Earthquakes Hit Andaman and Nicobar Islands

  • According to the National Centre for Seismology, nine medium intensity earthquakes, with a magnitude ranging from 4.7 to 5.2, hit the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, all in a span of two hours.
  • The Andaman and the Nicobar archipelago is prone to earthquakes.
  • It is also not unusual for the islands to witness more than two-three quakes a day.
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