Expected Questions in Environment & Latest Developments 2019 – IAS/NET ( Part- 2) (SET-3) (Download PDF)


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Please find below the most important expected topics for the upcoming UPSC Prelims exam 2019. Subscribe@Examrace YouTube Channel to get the complete series of expected questions. For practice and solutions visit - doorsteptutor. com. You can download the pdf by clicking the option “Download PDF”.

World Bank on impact of Climate Change

  • World Bank has unveiled US $200 billion in climate action investment for 2021 to 2025 to fight impact of climate change.

  • Move coincides w/Conference of Parties-24 (COP24) UN Climate Summit in Katowice, Poland.

  • Breakdown of US $200 billion will comprise approx. 100 billion in direct finance from World Bank. Around 1/3rd of remaining funding will come from 2 World Bank Group agencies & rest will be private capital mobilised by World Bank Group.

World Bank

  • International financial institution - provides loans to countries of world for capital projects.

  • Official goal – reduction of poverty by providing loans to developing countries for capital programmes.

  • Headquarter – Washington DC, US.

  • Comprises 2 institutions: International Bank for Reconstruction & Development (IBRD) & International Development Association (IDA).

  • Includes 3 subsidiary organisations: International Finance Corporation (IFC), Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), & International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID).

Online Continuous Emission Monitoring Systems (OCEMS)

Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has directed State Pollution Control Boards (SPCB) to close down industrial units that haven’t installed Online Continuous Emission Monitoring Systems (OCEMS).

CPCB is insisting that industries install OCEMS that relay data to CPCB & SPCB offices.

CPCB has since 2015 made it mandatory for industries to install OCEMS.

While govt. claims a compliance of nearly 80%, updated figures this year on recalcitrant industries are not available.


  • OCEMS has received attention & interest in context of providing accurate & continuous information on particulate matter/gaseous emission from stacks.

  • There are commercially available systems for monitoring parameters such as PM, HCl, HF, NH3, SO2, CO, O2, CO2, NOx, VOC, etc.

  • OCEMS comprises of total equipment necessary to determine concentration of gaseous emission & particulate matter concentration & emission rate using analytical measurements & computer program to provide results in units of applicable emission limits or standards.


  • CEMS provide continuous measurement of data for long periods of time, at monitoring site of interest w/o skilled staff being required to perform analysis.

  • All major steps in traditional analysis like sample collection, transportation, conditioning, calibration & analysis procedures including QC are usually automated in on-line analysers.

  • In case of sudden disturbance in system, on-line analysers provide timely information for taking immediate corrective/preventive steps compared to conventional methods.

Polluted Cities in India: WHO report

Latest survey by WHO of most polluted air in cities around world- shows that 14 of 15 worst cities were from north India, forming a band from Jodhpur in west to Muzaffarpur in the east.

India cities:

  • Kanpur figured on top of list. Kanpur’s average PM 2.5 levels were 17 times WHO limit in 2016, cut-off year for current study. Followed by Faridabad, Varanasi, Gaya & Patna.

  • Delhi figured 6th, which is hardly any consolation. In 2014, WHO listed Delhi worst in world in terms of PM.

  • Particulate matter (PM) 2.5 is smallest measurable pollutant, 30 times less than width of human hair, & is most hazardous.

National public health emergency:

  • 2 years ago, study on cost of air pollution co-authored by World Bank found that country lost 1.4 million lives due to such contamination in 2013, shaving off massive 8.5 % of GDP.

  • Case for controlling such pollution is thus incontrovertible in economic terms, if not in saving lives. Indians can live 4 years longer if we comply w/WHO norms.

  • Study on global burden of disease by Health Effect Institute in US, showed that India tops list of countries, beating China in registering highest number of early deaths due to ozone pollution.

‘Green’ Cricket in India

BCCI has signed Letter of Intent (LoI) w/UN Environment to promote green cricket in India. Partnership aims to spread greater awareness about key environmental challenges India is facing & highlight alternate & more sustainable solutions.

  • BCCI will endeavor to reduce its environmental impact by greening its operations & engaging cricketers & fans in green initiatives.

  • Partnering w/UN Environment will help to make cricket green & sensitise spectators towards minimizing waste generation during matches. It will focus on phasing out single-use plastic across stadiums in country.

Green Cricket Initiatives

  • Film with messages from captains of various franchises will be aired in stadiums highlighting hazards of plastic pollution during course of Indian Premier League (IPL).

  • At 4 matches played at Holkar Stadium in MP, Green Protocol based on concept of 3Rs – to reduce, reuse & recycle was implemented.

  • M Chinnaswamy stadium in Bengaluru, Karnataka replaced plastic cups & bottles w/environment-friendly alternatives for over 32,000 fans.

Global Wind Energy Summit

1st edition of Global Wind Summit - held in Hamburg, Germany. Summit was saw participation of speakers from about 100 countries, including India, China, US, Spain & Denmark.

  • Summit combines were had 2 main conferences, WindEnergy Hamburg & WindEurope, Holinsky.

  • Both events together were witness participation of about 1,400 exhibitors & 250 speakers from all over world.

  • Summit was provide platform for experts from across globe to discuss innovative & green technologies for harnessing wind energy making.

  • Focus of conferences was on 3 major subjects viz. dynamic markets, cost efficiency & smart energy. It was discussed ways to develop new markets, make product competitive in auctions & use wind power for all energy applications.

  • India w/33GW (installed capacity) is 4th largest country after China, US & Germany in terms of wind energy installation capacity. Govt. has set ambitious target of achieving 60 GW of wind energy by 2022.

New Bio-Fuel Policy

New policy seeks to help farmers dispose of their surplus stock in economic manner & reduce India’s oil-import dependence.

  • Policy expands scope of raw material for ethanol production by allowing use of

    • Sugarcane juice

    • Sugar containing materials like sugar beet, sweet sorghum

    • Starch containing materials like corn, cassava

    • Damaged food grains like wheat, broken rice

    • Rotten potatoes [that are] unfit for human consumption

  • Policy allows use of surplus food grains for production of ethanol for blending w/petrol w/approval of National Biofuel Coordination Committee.

  • Policy provides for a viability gap funding scheme for 2ndgeneration (more advanced) ethanol bio-refineries in addition to tax incentives & higher purchase price as compared to 1stgeneration biofuels.

Important Value Additions:

  • Biofuel is fuel that is produced thru contemporary biological processes like agriculture & anaerobic digestion, rather than fuel produced by geological processes like those involved in formation of fossil fuels, such as coal & petroleum, from prehistoric biological matter.

  • Earlier Bio-fuel policy had proposed indicative target of 20 % blending of biofuels, both for bio-diesel & bio-ethanol, by 2017.

  • Ethanol run bus launched in Nagpur under ‘Green Bus’ Project

Singchung Bugun Community Reserve: India Biodiversity Award 2018

  • Singchung Bugun Community Reserve, Arunachal Pradesh won India Biodiversity Award 2018.

  • SBVCR —17 sq. km hotspot for biodiversity- was launched in January 2017, after tribal members of Bugun community of Singchung Village joined hands w/Forest Department.

  • NGO won India Biodiversity Award 2018 in “Conservation of wildlife species” category conferred by National Biodiversity Authority (NBA) & presented by Union Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change in association w/UNDP.

  • Reserve was instituted under a clause of Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 that enables any state govt. to declare community-owned forest area as a “community reserve” if locals are willing to participate in conservation efforts for same.

  • Reserve lies right next to Eaglesnest Wildlife sanctuary, biodiversity hotspot, which is home to Bugun Liocichla —new bird species that has no reported sighting anywhere else in world.

  • NBA award especially recognises community efforts to conserve Liocichla.

Compensatory Afforestation Fund Act (CAF Act), 2016 and Forest Rights Act

Bill provides for establishment of funds under public accounts of Centre & State levels for compensatory afforestation.

Salient features of the bill

  • Establishes NCAF under Public Account of India & State Compensatory Afforestation Fund under Public Account of each state.

  • Payments into funds include compensatory afforestation, NPV & any project specific payments.

  • NCAF will get 10 % of funds collected & remaining 90 % will go to respective State Fund. Collected funds will be utilised for afforestation, regeneration of forest ecosystem, wild life protection & forest related infrastructure development.

  • Establishes National & State Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management & Planning Authorities to manage the funds.

  • Determination of NPV will be delegated to an expert committee constituted by the central government.

  • Net present value (NPV) of forest: value of diverted forest which is calculated & recovered from user agency for diverting forests. It is calculated for 50 years period.

Forest Rights Act, 2006

  • Scheduled Tribes & Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006 (FRA) legally recognises rights of communities like Dongria Kondh to live in & from their forests & to protect & manage their lands.

  • Act was created to reverse erosion of their traditional rights by forestry policies, encroachment on their lands by outsiders & take-over of their forests.

International Solar Alliance

  • ISA is breakthrough in our global positioning.

  • India has became catalyst in global attempts at capping climate change. This is Imp. in geopolitical sense when China is clearly expanding its global footprint.

  • There are now 121 countries which have signed up for global solar alliance.

  • Central to new role in global affairs is domestic commitment to generate 100 GW of solar energy by 2022, part of broader 175GW target for renewable energy.

  • Strategic thought: India has to push towards mass prosperity at a time when climate change is a huge concern.

Key challenges:

  • Global initiatives should always be seen thru lens of national interest. So international alliance based on credible commitments is important.

  • Rich countries are responsible for most of stock of excess carbon in atmosphere & high current levels of per capita carbon emissions (as against national aggregates) need to be pushed to provide asymmetrical funding for climate change mitigation & technology transfers.

  • Shift to solar energy should be seen as defence mechanism & opportunity.

  • The fight against climate change—and the broader move to low-carbon economies—is likely to create next big technological wave.

  • New technology will be critical factor in transition to a green economy which grows rapidly & India should take a shot at global leadership.

- Published/Last Modified on: April 16, 2019


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