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environmental degradation

The precarious situation of India’s water problem

Hari Pulakkat writes: The country’s water data has been largely hidden from public view, and what was available was poor or untrustworthy. This brings up a question rarely asked by policymakers. If scientists find it difficult to analyse the country’s water resources at the moment, how valid are the reports that forecast India’s water future?

Pumped dry: India’s accelerating and invisible groundwater crisis

From Policy Forum: India is now facing a water situation that is significantly worse than anything previous generations ever faced. All water bodies near population centres are now grossly polluted. Interstate disputes over river water allocations are becoming increasingly intense. Surface water conditions in the country are bad. However, the groundwater situation is even worse.

Modi government has launched a silent war on the environment

Nayantara Narayanan reports: The UPA government left behind a legacy of weakened safeguards for India’s environment, forests and forest-dwelling people. The Narendra Modi government has lost no time in weakening them further. The process has been so accelerated that journalists have struggled to keep pace with them. Here is a look at seven reported changes.

The dangers of separating science and environment

Manu Saunders writes: What will be the consequences if the perceived connection between scientific endeavor and the natural world continues to weaken? Presenting nature study as a pleasant but scientifically irrelevant hobby may have beneficial effects on our health and well-being, but it’ll damage our understanding of environmental issues and therefore our understanding of science.

Map shows India leads the world in ecological conflict

SciDev Net reports: India, Colombia and Nigeria have the most cases of conflict caused by climate change and environmental disputes, according to a map of global ecological conflict. The Environmental Justice Atlas shows that more than 200 conflicts in India are caused by ecological disputes and scarcities of basic resources such as water and forests.

Yogendra Yadav and Vandana Shiva call for a green party in India

Vasanth Srinivasan of The Hindu quotes former AAP leader Yogendra Yadav as saying, “there is a crying need for environmental politics” in India, but with the following caveat. “If green politics does not restrict itself as urban environmental activism but emerges as a binding agent of various marginalised groups and concerns, it definitely has a future in India.”

Only 60 years of farming left if soil degradation continues

Generating three centimeters of top soil takes 1,000 years, and if current rates of degradation continue all of the world’s top soil could be gone within 60 years, a senior UN official said Chris Arsenault, Reuters  ROME (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Generating three centimeters of top soil takes 1,000 years, and if current rates of degradation

Narendra Modi’s war on the environment

Rohini Mohan reports: In under a year, the Modi government has begun to undo policies of fair land acquisition, undermine environmental protection and reverse the fight for tribal rights. The finance, environment and rural-development ministers, and Modi himself, have called these safeguards to protect people’s property, the environment and tribal rights “roadblocks” to economic growth.

Free Online Course in Environmental Justice (starting 30th March)

About the course The world faces challenging environmental problems. They are challenging because different people typically contribute differently to environmental change, and because its effects will be felt differently by different people in different places. Understand environmental injustices This free online course will help you understand how injustice is a common feature of many environmental

Rohini Mohan: The Modi Government’s war on environment

Basudev Mahapatra writes: Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar, has “delinked forest clearance from clearance by the National Wild Life Board and halved NBWL clearance requirements from 10km to 5km around forest reserves, besides emasculating the Board by replacing eminent experts and concerned NGOs with rubber stamps. He has  also relaxed procedures of the Forest Conservation Act.

Modi and the Environment: The 100 day report

Basic protections to safeguard the environment, that were not particularly strong to begin with, are being wiped out. While in general, faster moving transparent  government processes are required, the Modi government’s predilection for protecting private corporations at the expense of public welfare, does not bode well for the environment nor the well-being of India’s peoples.

11 environmental disasters Narendra Modi blessed in his first 100 days

Jay Mazoomdar writes: Narendra Modi does mean business. So his government has gone about eliminating the policy paralyses that many claimed ailed the previous regime. This meant dismantling roadblocks that hamper economic growth. But here is what also happens to be under fire: laws and rules that safeguard India’s environment, forests, wildlife, and tribal rights.

Workshop: Towards a sustainable society

One-day workshop: Charting a course towards a sustainable, equitable and peaceful society Venue: Cerana Foundation, Hyderabad Day: Sunday, 13 July, 2014 Time: 9 am to 6 pm About the workshop: We face one tilting point–environmental degradation and two tipping points–climate change and peak oil. Environmental degradation has already ruined the lives of many people in

Environment Under Siege in New India

Papri Sri Raman reports: The new environment minister, Prakash Javadekar, met Defense Minister Jaitley on June 10 and later announced a policy that would enable India’s border states with Pakistan, China and Burma to clear defense projects falling within 100kms of the Line of Actual Control (LAC), without approaching the union government for environment clearances.

Mr Modi and the environment – A green vision or a grey area?

Avay Shukla writes: The most disappointing and worrying aspect of the recent elections, for me, has been the almost complete absence of any debate or discussion on the environment. Some political parties, the BJP included, did make weak proforma noises about it in their manifestos but there was no mention of it in their campaigning.

Bittu Sahgal: Narendra Modi’s development plan: Will it hang India’s wildlife?

The lion, tiger, turtle, butterfly, orchid, mudskipper and one-horned rhino will need every helping hand to survive the development ambitions of a nation that believes that economic ambitions can be fulfilled at the cost of its wildernesses. We know that’s not possible and hope that you will move us away from the subcontinent’s biological-climate precipice.

IB’s NGO Report: Not a time for intelligence or dissent

Jay Mazoomdar writes: In its “classified” report titled ‘Impact of NGOs on Development’ sent to a host of government offices including the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), on June 3, the Intelligence Bureau (IB) has named a long list of organizations and activists under its watch, from well-known environmental and anti-nuclear groups to little-known localized outfits.