Climate change hits Northeast bamboo crop

Bamboo hit by climate change Source: Wikimedia
Bamboo hit by climate change Source: Wikimedia

Climate change affects bamboo production in the Northeast

Changing rainfall pattern, a sign of climate change, has affected life and livelihoods in the seven states of Northeast India. Bamboo, the backbone of the Northeast's agrarian economy, has started flowering early and wilting soon after, thereby affecting production. 56% of the country's bamboo production comes from this region. Its tender shoots are eaten and it is otherwise used to build fences, houses, furniture and household goods such as baskets, grain containers and cutlery. Cheap bamboo import from China has also affected business in the region.

Hill people oppose the Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) report on dams on the Satluj

A cumulative EIA report of dams on the Satluj river in Himachal Pradesh has been rejected by the local people. The report was prepared by the Dehradun-based Indian Council for Forestry Research and Education on behalf of the State Government. According to local activists, the public weren't consulted before the report was prepared and people have no idea whether the surveyors studied the impact of already existing dams in the cumulative river basin study.

Marine pollution results in losses worth $100 million per year

Algal bloom in the Indian Ocean has resulted in losses worth $100 million a year, says a scientist from the Cochin University of Science and Technology. The economic loss is in terms of low production in fisheries, severe reduction in local or regional tourism, increase in public illness and decline in fisheries-related business due to the spread of harmful algal blooms over the past 25 years. According to the scientist, transport of seed population to the coastal waters and dumping of waste into the sea are major reasons for this algal bloom.

Uttar Kannada loses dense forest in more than one-third area of the district

The Uttar Kannada district in Karnataka has lost 3,383 square kilometres of dense forest cover in the last 37 years, which is more than one third of the total area of the district, says a study by the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. Large development projects like hydropower plants, the Kaiga nuclear power plant and the Konkan Railways accounted for the loss of 26,186 ha of forest while about 5,500 ha was cleared for rehabilitating families displaced by the projects.

Total Sanitation Campaign fails in Odisha: CAG

Odisha has met only 55% of the target set by the Central Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation for the Total Sanitation Campaign in the period 2011-12, reveals a report of the Comptoller and Auditor General of India. Against a target of 71.52 lakh toilets constructed in the State, the Government could achieve only 39.25 lakh by March 2012. According to the CAG, 85.9% rural households are deprived of latrine facilities, the reason for which is ineffective Information Education and Communication (IEC) action plans by the District Water and Sanitation Missions, inadequate staff and absence of proper planning at a district, block and Gram Panchayat level.

This is a weekly roundup of important news from December 8-14. Also read last week's policy matters updates.