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May 2019 - Environment News



  • New medicinal plants found in Manipur. Scientists attempting to document indigenous medicinal knowledge of Zeliangrong ethnic group in Manipur have found new medicinal plants. Scientists identified plants like Gynura cusimbua, Hedyotis scandens, Mussaenda glabra and Schima wallichii whose medicinal usage are reported for the first time. Zeliangrong ethnic group is one of the 32 tribes in Manipur.


  • Union Environment Ministry on 29th May launched the song 'Hawa Aane De' to spread awareness about Air pollution. The song was launched by Secretary, Ministry of Environment C K Mishra ahead of the World Environment Day on 5th of June. The theme of Environment Day for 2019 is Air Pollution.


  • Union Ministry of Environment announced a project to create DNA Database for Indian Rhinos. This is done in order to curb poaching and collect evidence for wildlife crimes including Rhinos. The deadline to meet this project is 2021. The database will be kept in the Wildlife Institute of India(WII) headquartered in Dehradun, Uttarakhand.


  • International Museum Day (IMD) is celebrated on 18th May every year. It is coordinated by the International Council of Museums (ICOM). The objective of International Museum Day (IMD) is to raise awareness that, Museums are an important means of cultural exchange. The theme for International Museum Day (IMD) 2019 is Museums as Cultural Hubs: The future of tradition.


  • Scientists in Germany have found a new species of flying dinosaur that flapped its wings like a raven. Archaeopteryx, a small feathered dinosaur, was considered to be the oldest flying bird. Scientists have named the new bird-like dinosaur Alcmonavis poeschli. 


  • For the first time, researchers have sighted nests of the grizzled giant squirrel at Pakkamalai Reserve Forests near Gingee in the Eastern Ghats. The squirrel is an endangered species listed under Schedule I of the Wildlife Protection Act. Owing to habitat loss and poaching, the species has been categorised as near threatened by the Red List and listed under Schedule II of CITES.


  • Scientists in the US have detected the highest levels of planet-warming carbon dioxide in Earth's atmosphere since records began. The Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii, which has tracked atmospheric CO2 levels since the late 1950s, detected 415.26 parts per million (ppm). It was also the first time on record that the observatory measured a daily baseline above 415 ppm.


  • The scientists have created a next-generation plastic that can be fully recycled into new materials of any colour, shape, or form, without loss of performance or quality. A team of researchers at the US Department of Energy's (DOE) Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has designed it. All plastics are made up of large molecules called polymers, which are composed of monomers.


  • The National Green Tribunal directed 18 states and 2 Union Territories to submit an action plan within three months to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB). This is being done to ensure utilization of treated waste to reduce pressure on the groundwater resources throughout the country. The states which have not submitted action plans include Gujarat, Assam, Bihar, and Punjab.


  • The Central government has made mandatory for all Electric Vehicles (EVs) to use the green number plates. All EVs should use green number plates wherein the private electric vehicles will get white lettering on a green background and commercial EVs will get yellow lettering. The aim is to help distinguish green vehicles to provide easy identification for preferential treatment.


  • BHEL and Automotive Research Association of India signed a MoU. It is for effective cooperation on different projects related to e-mobility and implement solutions for electric & trolley bus, EV (Electric Vehicles) chargers, battery and charger testing. Electro mobility refers to full and hybrid electric vehicles as well as that using hydrogen fuel cell technology.


  • UK Parliament became the first national government to pass a national declaration of an Environment and Climate Emergency. This move marks a serious emergency in dealing with climate change. The declaration was preceded by a visit by teenage activist Greta Thunberg (to the Parliament), the feature of David. Attenborough’s documentary movie titled ‘Climate Change: The Facts’.


  • Bajirao, the last captive white tiger at the Sanjay Gandhi National Park in Mumbai suburb Borivali, died at the age of 18. The tiger had been suffering from chronic ankylosis on left shoulder and chronic senile generalized arthritis for the last four years. Bajirao was born at the Sanjay Gandhi National Park in 2001.


  • UN agency for disaster reduction has commended the Indian Meteorological Department's almost pinpoint accuracy of early warnings that helped authorities conduct a well-targeted evacuation plan and minimize the loss of life as extremely severe cyclonic storm Fani made landfall near the coastal city of Puri. India's zero-casualty approach to managing extreme weather events is a major contribution to the implementation of the Sendai Framework and the reduction of loss of life from such events.

    The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030, the first major agreement of the post-2015 development agenda. It is a 15-year, voluntary, non-binding agreement which recognizes that the state has the primary role to reduce disaster risk. UN agencies are monitoring Fani's movements closely and taking measures to protect families living in refugee camps in Bangladesh, which is on.


  • India CEO Forum on Climate Change was organized by Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) on 8 May 2019. The Forum consisted of high-level discussions across several sessions covering topics from India’s Nationally Determined Contributions. The sessions voiced deliberations from the government on India’s international commitments to fighting climate change.


  • Global warming shrank economy by 31%. According to a Stanford study, global warming has caused the Indian economy to be 31% smaller than it would have been. The study shows how Earth's temperature changes have increased inequalities. It showed that growing concentrations of greenhouse gases in Earth's atmosphere since the 1960s have enriched cool countries like Norway and Sweden.


  • A total of 3,000 kg of solid waste has been collected from Mt. Everest, since April 14, 2019, as a part of a campaign launched by Nepal. The campaign seeks to bring back and safely dispose of a total of 10,000 kg of waste. The 45-day 'Everest Cleaning Campaign', led by Solukhumbu district's Khumbu Pasanglhamu Rural Municipality began on April 14, 2019.


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