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Dec. 10, 2023
About Council for the Indian School Certificate Examination (CISCE):
- CISCE is a privately held national-level board of school education in India that supervises and controls the Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE).
- It was established in 1958. Over 2,100 schools in India and abroad are affiliated to the CISCE.
- It has been designed to deliver an examination in the course of general education through the medium of English, in accordance with the recommendations of the New Education Policy 1986.
- CISCE conducts three examinations, namely, the Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE –Class X); The Indian School Certificate (ISC - Class XII) and the Certificate in Vocational Education (CVE - Year 12).
- The subject choices and syllabuses prescribed for these examinations are varied and aimed at nurturing the unique gifts of individual pupils.
- It does not allow a private student to appear for the exam, which has not been studying in ICSE affiliated school.
- The Council has been so constituted as to secure suitable representation of: Government of India, State Governments/Union Territories in which there are Schools affiliated to the Council, the Inter-State Board for Anglo Indian Education, the Association of Indian Universities, the Association of Heads of Anglo-Indian Schools, the Indian Public Schools’ Conference, the Association of Schools for the ISC Examination and members co-opted by the Executive Committee of the Council.
Dec. 10, 2023
- It is a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI).
- It is caused by the bacteria, Treponema pallidum.
- After the infection happens, syphilis bacteria can stay in the body for many years without causing symptoms. But the infection can become active again.
- Syphilis spreads from person to person through direct contact with these sores.
- It can also be passed to a baby during pregnancy, childbirth and sometimes through breastfeeding.
- Syphilis develops in stages. The symptoms vary with each stage and is often painless.
- During the first stage, one or more sores develop on the genitals, rectum, or mouth, and are often painless.
- During the second stage, people may get a rash and experience flu-like symptoms, such as fatigue, fever, a sore throat and muscles aches.
- After the second stage, the symptoms of syphilis are hidden (latent stage).
- Without treatment, syphilis can damage the heart, brain, or other organs. It can become life-threatening.
- Treatment: Syphilis is curable with quick diagnosis and treatment. It is curable with the right antibiotics.
Dec. 10, 2023
About National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG):
- It is a registered society under the Ministry of Jal Shakti, Government of India, to take measures for prevention, control and abatement of environmental pollution in the river Ganga and to ensure continuous adequate flow of water so as to rejuvenate the river Ganga.
- It acted as the implementation arm of the National Ganga River Basin Authority (NGRBA), which was constituted under the provisions of the Environment (Protection) Act (EPA), 1986.
- NGRBA has since been dissolved with effect from 2016, consequent to the constitution of the National Council for Rejuvenation, Protection and Management of River Ganga (referred to as National Ganga Council).
- The aims and objectives of NMCG is to accomplish the mandate of the NGRBA:
- To ensure effective abatement of pollution and rejuvenation of the river Ganga by adopting a river basin approach to promote inter-sectoral co-ordination for comprehensive planning and management and
- To maintain minimum ecological flows in the river Ganga with the aim of ensuring water quality and environmentally sustainable development.
- NMCG has a two-tier management structure that comprises of Governing Council and Executive Committee. Both of them are headed by the Director General, NMCG.
- The Executive Committee has been authorized to accord approval for all projects up to Rs. 1000 crores.
- Similar to the structure at the national level, State Programme Management Groups (SPMGs) act as the implementing arm of State Ganga Committees.
- The Director General (DG) of NMCG is an Additional Secretary in the Government of India.
Dec. 10, 2023
About Goldilocks Effect:
- The Goldilocks Effect, or the Goldilocks Principle, is the premise that people are inclined to seek ‘just the right’ amount of something.
- People prefer something that is neither too extreme nor too moderate but falls within an optimal or desirable range, fitting their specific needs or preferences.
- The concept is derived from the children's story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears, where Goldilocks preferred the porridge, chair and bed that were neither too hot nor too cold, too big nor too small, but just right.
- It has a place in several fields and disciplines. It applies to elements of psychology, hard sciences, economics, marketing and engineering, and each one has its own twist on how the principle is applied.
- Goldilocks Pricing:
- It is one of the effect's more prominent applications. It’s a psychological pricing strategy that rests on the concepts of
- Product differentiation
- Comparative pricing
- Product differentiation is the practice of distinguishing certain products from others.
- Businesses can only leverage the Goldilocks Effect if they can differentiate their own products from one another.
- This then needs to be combined with something known as comparative pricing where businesses offer multiple versions of a product simultaneously of varying quality, attached to corresponding price points.
- It ultimately informs a comparative pricing strategy involving three options. One that's too high for most, one that's too low for most, and one that's just right.
- When done right, the strategy allows a business to appeal to various parts of the market-registering with premium buyers, standard consumers and discount seekers.
10 Dec 2023
Why in news?
- Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) 2024 was released on the sidelines of the ongoing COP28 at Dubai.
- India ranked 7th in this year’s Climate Change Performance Index, up one spot from the previous one.
What’s in today’s article?
- Change Performance Index (CCPI)
- News Summary
Change Performance Index (CCPI)
- CCPI is a scoring system that measures the climate protection performance of countries. It was first published in 2005.
- It is designed to improve transparency in international climate politics.
- The CCPI uses a standardized framework to compare the climate performance of 63 countries and the EU, which together account for over 90% of global greenhouse gas emissions.
- The climate protection performance is assessed in four categories: GHG Emissions, Renewable Energy, Energy Use and Climate Policy.
- The analysis also reports on the extent to which each country is taking actions in the areas of emissions, renewable energy and energy use in order to achieve the climate goals set in Paris.
- Based on each country's overall score.
- Published by
- Germanwatch, the New Climate Institute and the Climate Action Network publish the index annually.
News Summary: India climate action fourth strongest
- India’s climate actions were rated the fourth strongest in an annual performance index released by Germanwatch.
Key highlights of the report
- Top performers
- Denmark retained the top spot with a score of 75.59 per cent.
- It should be noted that none of these countries have been able to achieve a very high rating over the last few years.
- Hence, the first three ranks are left vacant.
- Estonia and the Philippines occupied the second and third ranks respectively, with 72.07 and 70.70.
- India followed closely with 70.25 per cent.
- Worst performers
- Most developed countries fared poorly compared to last year including the United Kingdom, the United States, Italy and others.
- Saudi Arabia was at the bottom
- Steps needed
- Despite the urgent need to decarbonise all sectors, global greenhouse gases (GHG) have increased in 2022 and atmospheric CO2 is now 50 per cent higher than pre-industrial levels.
- CCPI countries must have an emissions peak by 2025 to keep the 1.5°C goal in reach.
- Moreover, emissions must be halved by 2030 (vs 2020) levels.
- Denmark retained the top spot with a score of 75.59 per cent.
India specific observation in the report
- Fourth best ranking in the index
- India’s high population, which automatically reduces its per capita energy use, plays a major role in giving it a high position in climate performance.
- India’s rank in different categories
- India was ranked 9th in GHG Emissions and 10th in Energy Use among assessed countries.
- In Climate Policy too, India was ranked 10th.
- In Renewable Energy, India is ranked 37th, barely remaining within the ‘high’ performance category.
- India on track to meet a benchmark of well below 2°C in per capita GHG category
- India’s coal use was pointed out
- It said that while India is trying to meet its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) but India’s growing energy needs are still being met by its heavy reliance on coal, along with oil and gas.
- This dependence is a major source of GHG emissions and causes severe air pollution, especially in the cities.
- India is among the most air-polluted countries of the world.
Dec. 10, 2023
About Banni Grassland:
- It is located along the northern border of Kachchh district in the State of
- It is one of the largest grasslands in the Indian subcontinent with an area of over 2500 sq. km.
- Many factors have served to shape Banni over time, including the damming of rivers, the introduction and spread of the invasive Prosopis juliflora tree, and the continually varying composition and density of livestock that have grazed these grasslands for many centuries.
- The Banni is also home to 22 ethnic groups, the majority of whom are pastoralists, spread across 48 settlements in 19 Panchayats, with a population of close to 40,000 people.
- It is home to great biological diversity, having 37 grass species, 275 bird species, and domesticated animals like Buffalo, Sheep, Goat, Horses and Camel, as well as wildlife.
- The Kutch Desert Wildlife Sanctuary which spans over an area of 380 sq. km and the recently notified 227 Sq. km Chhari Dhand Conservation Reserve are part of the Banni Grasslands.
- Flora: The vegetation here mainly comprises Prosopis Juliflora, Cressa critica, Cyperus spp, Sporobolus, Dichanthium, and Aristida.
- It is home to mammals such as the Nilgai, Chinkara, Blackbuck, Wild boar, Golden Jackal, Indian Hare, Indian Wolf, Caracal, Asiatic Wildcat and Desert Fox etc.
- The region also serves as a breeding ground for the Banni buffalo and the Kankrej cow.
Dec. 10, 2023
About Green Rising Initiative:
- This initiative focuses on engaging youth for impactful environmental actions at the grassroots level, aligning with the global effort to address the severe impacts of climate change.
- The global "Green Rising" initiative and the "Green Rising India Alliance" marks a collaborative effort involving UNICEF, Generation Unlimited, and a diverse network of public, private, and youth partners.
- The main goal is to mobilize millions of young people worldwide, encouraging their active participation in green initiatives addressing and adapting to the severe impacts of climate change on their communities.
- Through the YuWaah campaign in India, the focus is on engaging youth to drive impactful environmental actions at the grassroots level.
Key points about the UNICEF
- The United Nations Children's Fund was originally founded as the United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF).
- It was founded by the UN General Assembly on 11 December 1946, to provide emergency food and healthcare to children and mothers in countries that had been devastated by World War II.
- It is a leading source of information on the situation of children around the world.
- It relies entirely on contributions from governments and private donors.
- The Executive Board is made up of 36 Member States, elected to three-year terms by the Economic and Social Council, with the following regional allocation: Africa (8 seats), Asia (7), Eastern Europe (4), Latin America and Caribbean (5) and Western Europe and Others (12).
- Headquarters: New York City.
10 Dec 2023
Why in the News?
- The Central government told the UN Framework for Climate Change Convention (UNFCCC) that India has spent about Rs 13.35 lakh crore in 2021-22, just over 5.5% of its GDP.
What’s in Today’s Article?
- About Climate Adaptation (Meaning, Features, Benefits)
- News Summary
What is Climate Adaptation?
- The world is already experiencing changes in average temperature, shifts in the seasons, an increasing frequency of extreme weather events, and slow onset events.
- The faster the climate changes and the longer adaptation efforts are put off, the more difficult and expensive responding to climate change will be.
- Adaptation refers to adjustments in ecological, social or economic systems in response to actual or expected climatic stimuli and their effects.
- It refers to changes in processes, practices and structures to moderate potential damages or to benefit from opportunities associated with climate change.
- In simple terms, countries and communities need to develop adaptation solutions and implement actions to respond to current and future climate change impacts.
- Adaptation actions can take on many forms, depending on the unique context of a community, business, organization, country or region.
- There is no ‘one-size-fits-all-solution’—adaptation can range from building flood defences, setting up early warning systems for cyclones, switching to drought-resistant crops, to redesigning communication systems, business operations and government policies.
- Many nations and communities are already taking steps to build resilient societies and economies.
Benefits of Climate Adaptation:
- Adaptation efforts are meant to reduce the impacts of climate change. Along with mitigation, or reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, adaptation is a central pillar of global climate action.
- Timely effort towards adaptation can prevent climate disasters and economic losses.
- The money spent on protecting an airport or a power station against flooding, for example, would be much less than the chaos or economic losses incurred when they go out of operation because of an extreme rainfall or flooding event.
- India spent about Rs 13.35 lakh crore in 2021-22, just over 5.5% of its GDP, on climate adaptation and expects to incur another about Rs 57 lakh crore over the next seven years for this purpose.
- The Central government informed the UN Framework for Climate Change Convention (UNFCCC), recently.
- The UNFCCC secretariat (UN Climate Change) is the United Nations entity tasked with supporting the global response to the threat of climate change.
- The secretariat is located in Bonn, Germany.
- However, if climate-induced damage could escalate this amount by another Rs 15.5 lakh crore.
Why Did the Government Provide this Information to UNFCCC?
- Under the global climate change framework, countries are supposed to measure their annual greenhouse gas emissions every few years, and submit it to UNFCCC for maintaining a global inventory.
- This used to be called National Communication (NATCOMs), under the 1997 Kyoto Protocol mechanism.
- Under the Paris Agreement (2015) that has replaced Kyoto Protocol, this submission is called Biennial Update Reports, or BURs.
- On Saturday (9th Dec, 2023), India submitted its third NATCOM which will finish its obligations under the Kyoto Protocol.
- It has also submitted three BURs under the Paris Agreement so far, and that will continue.
- The third NATCOM contains detailed inventory of India’s greenhouse gas emissions for the year 2019.
- It shows that India’s total emissions in 2019 was 3.13 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent.
- Accounting for the absorptions by the forestry sector, the net emissions was 2.64 billion tonnes.
- This is less than half of United States and less than one-fourth of that of China.
- The inventory shows that energy sector, comprising, among others, electricity production and road transport, accounted for over 75 per cent of India’s total emissions.
- It is followed by agriculture which contributed about 13 per cent and industry whose share was about 8 per cent.
- The Paris Agreement also asked countries to submit and, periodically, update, an adaptation communication, detailing their priorities on this front, and the actions they were taking along with.
India’s first adaptation communication
- Recently, India’s first Adaptation Communication was submitted along with the third NATCOM.
- The Adaptation Communication provides a detailed description of India’s vulnerability to climate change, its adaptation requirements, and actions being taken or envisaged.
- Several government plans and policies, like the Jal Jeevan Mission, PM Awas Yojana, Swachhta Mission, Ganga cleaning exercise, heat action plans, or cyclone warning system have important adaptation co-benefits.
- In an assessment of the risks it faced on account of climate change, India said total economic value of crop loss (food as well as non-food) due to climate impacts were projected to range between USD 28.6 and 54.8 billion between 2030 and 2050 (2015 prices).
- Over the next 50 years, these losses could shoot up to USD 612 billion to USD 1 trillion.
- State-wise, it said, “Uttar Pradesh would suffer the highest economic loss due to impacts of climate change on state agriculture”.
- India said its expenditure on adaptation-relevant activities, both in absolute amount as well as in proportion to the GDP, had been rising.
- It is up from about Rs 5 lakh crore and 3.7 per cent of GDP in 2015-16 to Rs 13.35 lakh crore and 5.6 per cent of GDP in 2021-22.
- It said it would benefit from international financial support in this regard.
- The international climate change regime mandates developed countries to provide finance to the developing countries for carrying out mitigation, adaptation and several other climate-related activities.
Dec. 10, 2023
About Electric eel:
- The scientific name of this species is Electrophorus Electricus which is a fish that only lives in freshwater areas.
- They can release up to 860 volts, which is enough to run a machine.
- They emit a weak electric signal, which they use like radar to navigate, to find a mate, and to find prey.
- It has a slender, snake-like body and flattened head.
- It has three specialized electric organs—the main electrical organ, the Hunter’s organ and the Sachs’ organ which make up about 80 percent of this fish’s body.
- It can deliver a shock because its nervous system contains a number of disc-shaped electrogenic (electricity-producing) cells called electrocytes.
- Habitat: They dwell mainly on the muddy bottoms of rivers and occasionally swamps, prefering deeply shaded areas.
- Distribution: Its range spans across Brazil, the Guianas, Suriname, Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru.
- Conservation status
- IUCN: Least concern
What is Electroporation?
- Electroporation uses an electric field to create temporary pores in the cell membrane. This lets molecules, like DNA or proteins, enter the target cell.