1 . 2017 – A bad year for sea-ice spread
- This year Arctic temperatures continued to increase at double the rate of the global temperature increase.
- The current observed rates of sea-ice decline and rising oceanic temperatures were higher than at any other time in the last 1,500 years; this year’s Arctic sea-ice maximum, measured in March, was the lowest ever observed—at 14.42 million sq km, it was the lowest in the 38-year satellite record, beating 2015’s maximum of 14.517 mn sq km and 2016’s maximum of 14.52 mn sq km.
- The sea-ice minimum, measured in September, was eighth lowest on record—at 4.64 mn sq km on September 13. This was 1.58 mn sq km below the 1981 to 2010 median extent for the same day. The date of the minimum ice extent for 2017 itself was two days earlier than the average such date.
- What is more worrying is that even if countries manage to keep the global temperature rise to under 2-degree C, they would still not be able to reverse the ice-melt cycle.
2 . NGT bans plastic in Haridwar, Rishikesh, Uttarkashi.
- River Ganga is soon going to be plastic free, as National Green Tribunal (NGT) in a major development has took an important step in the matter.
- The use, sale, purchase and storage of plastic bags and plastic items in Haridwar and Rishikesh has been banned by NGT.
- The special tribunal banned the use of plastic materials like plates, spoons and other plastic-made cutlery along river Ganga in Haridwar’s Har Ki Pauri and Rishikesh.
- A bench headed by NGT chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar also banned the sale, manufacture and storage of such items till Uttarkashi.
- Moreover, the special tribunal has also made a provision for imposition of a fine of Rs 5,000 on those violating the order.
- The NGT passed the direction after noting that despite its earlier order, plastic was being used in these areas causing pollution to the river.
- Earlier in August, the green panel had imposed an interim ban on use of non-biodegradable plastic bags which are less than 50 microns in Delhi.
FOR DETAILS ABOUT NGT – REFER ARTICLE ON NGT IN ENVIRONMENT CATEGORY – DATED 17 th DEC 2017
3 . Tuirial hydro power project dedicated to the nation
- Prime Ministerd formally dedicate the 60 MW Tuirial Hydro Electric Power Project (HEPP) to the nation on Saturday.
ABOUT TUIRIAL HEPP
- Tuirial dam is an earthfill and gravity dam near Kolasib in the state of Mizoram.
- Tuirial Hydel Project(60 MW) is the 2nd largest earthen dam and the largest in India.
- Tuirial HEPP has been constructed as a central sector project and implemented by North Eastern Electric Power Corporation (NEEPCO), under the administrative control of the Ministry of Power, Government of India.
- The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) had cleared the project for implementation in July 1998 with commissioning scheduled in July 2006.
- After completion of about 30 per cent of the project activities, the works were totally suspended from June 2004 due to local agitation. With sustained efforts by NEEPCO and with the active support of the Ministry of Power and Ministry of DoNER, Government of India and Government of Mizoram, the stalled works of the project were resumed in January 2011.
- The first unit was commissioned on August 25, 2017 and the second November 28, 2017. The project has been built at a cost of ₹ 1,302 crore.
- Tuirial HEPP is the biggest power project located in Mizoram and will feed the entire energy to be generated to the home State.
- The State’s current demand of electricity is 87 MW and this is being met by the mini power projects and availability of its share of power from central sector projects.