China’s melting glacier draws tourists amid climate worries :-
Third pole under threat
- Third Pole is a region in Central Asia with the world’s third-largest store of ice. The region encompasses the Himalaya-Hindu Kush mountain ranges and the Tibetan Plateau
- Scientists conducting research in the area have warned of disturbing global warming trends
- Temperatures there have increased by 1.5 degrees – more than double the global average
- The glacier has lost 60% of its mass and shrunk 250 m since 1982, according to a 2018 report in the Journal of Geophysical Research
- Since 2005, the rate at which the Third Pole’s glaciers are melting has almost doubled
- Research has also found that more than 500 small glaciers have disappeared altogether and the biggest ones are shrinking rapidly. If the present trends continue, they could affect the lives of 1.3 billion people
Importance of the third pole
- 10 of Asia’s largest rivers begin here, including the Yellow River and Yangtze river in China, the Irrawaddy river in Myanmar, the Ganges, which flows through India and Bangladesh, and the trans-boundary Mekong river. It is estimated that the water that flows from the Third Pole supports 120 million people directly through irrigation systems, and a total of 1.3 billion indirectly through river basins in China, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.
- The continuous glacier melting will be catastrophic for the 1.3 billion people who depend on its water. While initially more water is expected to pour into river basins, causing flooding, eventually that will dry up, resulting in drought and desertification
Global warming is not the only cause
- Dust and pollution from car exhausts and coal burners is settling on the ice, causing it to absorb the rays of the sun, rather than reflect them away
27th Fusion Energy Conference begins in Gandhinagar :-
- The 27th Fusion Energy Conference (FEC 2018) is being held in Gandhinagar, Gujarat.
- The event is organised by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and hosted by the Department of Atomic Energy and Gandhinagar-based Institute of Plasma Research.
- It aims to provide a forum for the discussion of key physics and technology issues as well as innovative concepts of direct relevance to the use of nuclear fusion as a source of energy.
- Experts from across the world will discuss the new challenges being faced by the fusion community in the light of a number of next-step fusion devices being implemented currently.
- Scientists across the world are collaborating to use nuclear fusion, the reaction that powers the Sun and the stars, as source energy.
- The conference will also set these results against the backdrop of the requirements for a net energy producing fusion device and a fusion power plant in general, and will thus help in defining the way forward.
Panel for adopting UN model on cross-border insolvency :-
The Insolvency Law Committee (ILC), tasked with suggesting amendments to the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code of India (IBC), has recommended for adopting the UN model to handle cross-border insolvency cases.
Recommendations of the ILC
- The ILC has recommended the adoption of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) Model Law of Cross Border Insolvency, 1997. The Model Law has been adopted in 44 countries and, therefore, forms part of international best practices in dealing with cross border insolvency issues. It provides for a comprehensive framework to deal with cross-border insolvency issues.
- The ILC has also recommended a few changes to ensure that there is no inconsistency between the domestic insolvency framework and the proposed cross border insolvency framework.
Why adopt UNCITRAL Model Law
- The proposed IBC will enable us to deal with Indian companies having foreign assets and vice versa.
- The other advantages include greater confidence generation among foreign investors, adequate flexibility for seamless integration with the domestic Insolvency Law and a robust mechanism for international cooperation.
UNCITRAL Model Law of Cross Border Insolvency
- It is a model law issued by the secretariat of UNCITRAL in 1997 to assist states for the regulation of corporate insolvency and financial distress involving companies which have assets or creditors in more than one state.
- It defines a cross-border insolvency as one where the insolvent debtor has assets in more than one state, or where some of the creditors of the debtor are not from the state where the insolvency proceeding is taking place.
- The model law deals with four major principles of cross-border insolvency namely:
- direct access to foreign insolvency professionals and foreign creditors to participate in or commence domestic insolvency proceedings against a defaulting debtor;
- recognition of foreign proceedings & provision of remedies;
- cooperation between domestic and foreign courts & domestic and foreign insolvency practioners;
- coordination between two or more concurrent insolvency proceedings in different countries.
- The main proceeding is determined by the concept of centre of main interest (“COMI”).
Harit Diwali-Swasth Diwali :-
Keeping in view the detrimental effects of bursting Crackers and also the importance of the festival, MoEFCC has initiated a “Harit–Diwali” campaign.
- This campaign was initiated in 2017-18 in Delhi wherein large number of school children especially from eco-clubs participated and took pledge to minimize bursting of crackers.
- During this intensive campaign, the children were advised to celebrate Diwali in an environment-friendly manner by gifting plant sapling to their relatives and friends along with sweets etc.
- The children were encouraged to light up their houses and their schools with candles and diyas.
- The above campaign was extremely successful and the air quality had not deteriorated post Diwali in 2017 unlike what was experienced in 2016.
A pan-India Campaign this year
- On the above lines, the Ministry has initiated the similar campaign, but this year the campaign has been extended Pan-India.
- The “Harit Diwali-Swasth Diwali” campaign is now merged with “Green Good Deed” movement that has been initiated as a social mobilization for conservation and protection of environment.
- The Ministry encourages all schools and colleges to be part of this campaign.
Vishwashanti Ahimsa Sammelan :-
The President of India has inaugurated the Vishwashanti Ahimsa Sammelan at Mangi Tungi, Nasik in Maharashtra. The event is being organised by the Bhagwan Shri Rishabhdev 108 Feet Vishalkai Digambar Jain Murti Nirman Committee.
Humankind is exploiting nature indiscriminately. Ruthless consumption and accumulation of resources is increasing.Due to this, phenomena like climate change are emerging as challenges. President highlighted the importance following the Jain Principles for a way out against emerging challenges.
Who is Rishabhdeva ?
- He is the first Tirthankara of Jainism. The Vishnu Purana and Bhagvat Purana describe him as an incarnation of Vishnu.
- He along with Arishtamneni finds mention in Rig-Veda. He was followed by 23 other Tirthankars.
The Sign of Rishbhdev is a Bull and achieved nirvana on the Kailasa Mountain of the Himalayas.