Karnataka sets up firm to mitigate mining impacts
The Karnataka Government has set up a new firm called Karnataka Mining Environment Restoration Corporation (KMERC), that will carry out environment restoration work in the mine-ravaged districts of Ballari, Chitradurga and Tumakuru. The firm will spend Rs 2000 crore to implement the Comprehensive Environmental Plan for the Mining Impact Zone. As per experts, the project is a first of its kind and the biggest programme undertaken in the country to mitigate mining impacts.
Drought affects 90 lakh farmers in Maharashtra
According to official data, two-thirds or 90 lakh farmers in Maharashtra have been affected by drought. The worst affected regions are Marathwada and Vidarbha. Delayed and inadequate monsoons coupled with hailstorms last year have resulted in severe drought in the state. The State Government has released relief worth Rs 2,000 crore so far and has sought financial aid worth Rs 4,800 crore from Centre.
Landslide threatens Zanskar valley in J&K
A massive 200 ft high landslide dam has blocked the Phuktal river, a tributary of the Zanskar in Jammu & Kashmir. The landslide has created an 8 km long lake in the Zanskar valley in Kargil district on December 31, 2014. Though the artificial lake is frozen, it has become a threat to at least four villages with a population of nearly 4000 people. An expert team from the National Disaster Management Authority will carry out spot inspection of the area.
Overuse of groundwater triggers sinkhole in Andhra
A sinkhole has been noticed on the dried Chitravati riverbed in Anantpur district in Andhra Pradesh. The probable reason for the geological event to have occurred is the absence of rains for the last six years and overexploitation of groundwater in this perennially drought-prone district. Local authorities have also confirmed that the extraction of groundwater is high in the area through agriculture borewells.
Aaranyak launches 'Mission Clean Brahmaputra'
Aaranyak, a society for nature conservation and a Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, has launched the initiative 'Mission Clean Brahmaputra'. The objective of the mission is to keep the river clean to make it a better aquatic habitat, and for the greater benefit of people. Cleaning different riverside areas of the Brahmaputra and making the communities that live alongside the river aware about the cleanliness drive, will be the main focus of the mission.
Telangana to organise Godavari Pushkaralu
On the lines of the Kumbh Mela, the Telangana Government has planned the Godavari Pushkaralu on a large scale. The Government plans to spend Rs 452 crore on the event that is scheduled to take place in June-July. Towards the event, the Government plans to construct 69 new bathing ghats and carry out repairs on the existing 27.
Centre allocates Rs 900 crore to Bihar for intra-river linking projects
The Centre has sanctioned Rs 900 crore to Bihar for the three intra-river linking projects received from the state. The projects are Burhi Gandak-Ganga-Noon project, Kosi-Mechhi project and the Sakri-Nata project. The intra-river linking projects is supposed to help remove the water imbalance in a state that has both drought and flood-prone districts.
Real estate boom puts East Kolkata Wetlands in danger
The flow of sewage has been deliberately reduced over the past decade in the East Kolkata Wetlands, in a bid to cease fishery and farming to make way for real estate. Fish cultivated in the wetland, which has been internationally recognized as a Ramsar site, depend on sewage for nutrients. Also, for the past three years, fishermen are being discouraged by people, claiming to be government officials, from fishing.