Biodiversity

  • Jaman Ram, a resident of Bhikia Sain, a tehsil in Uttarakhand, remembers fishing with his father in the Ramganga. “We could catch 80-100 kilograms of fish a day. That is no longer possible,” he says. Shafiq of Haldwani shares an unsettling memory of the Ramganga. As a young man on a holiday, he ...
    chicuposted 2 years 5 months agoread more
  • Lingaraj Jena is a worried man. At 86, he is one of the older fishermen in Berhampura village, an island on the Chilika lake in Odisha. Though he no longer goes for fishing due to old age, he is worried about the opening of new sea mouths; he knows it is not good news for the fishing communities he ...
    makarandpurohitposted 2 years 5 months agoread more
  • Most of Hyderabad water bodies reduced to cesspools Out of the 25 prominent water bodies in Hyderabad, 23 have failed to meet the water quality standards set by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB). With the presence of high levels of faecal coliform, all 23 water bodies fall below ...
    swatiposted 2 years 5 months agoread more
  • NGT seeks MP, Rajasthan's opinion on maintaining e-flow in Chambal river The National Green Tribunal has ordered the Madhya Pradesh and the Rajasthan governments to give their opinion on parting with 10 percent of their water share of the Chambal river for maintaining the river's environmental flow...
    swatiposted 2 years 5 months agoread more
  • An aerospace engineer from IIT, Kharagpur, Siddharth Agarwal could have been drawing a fancy salary like any other 25-year-old if he hadn’t followed his passion. Born and bred in Kolkata, his curiosity of life around rivers and his interest in knowing it first hand to form the right perspective of...
    makarandpurohitposted 2 years 6 months agoread more
  • Renuka can be forgiven if she were to feel a bit crazy at times. Like many other women, she could be finding it hard to balance her pious and wild sides. Renuka lake, located in Sirmaur, the southernmost district of Himachal, is one of the two Ramsar wetlands in Himachal Pradesh. Situated at a rela...
    chicuposted 2 years 6 months agoread more
  • On a 29 sq km tract of land in Bharatpur, Rajasthan lies the wildlife reserve, Keoladeo national park, locally known as Ghana. Birds enjoy the open water while wildlife roams freely in this montage of wetland, grassland and forest. The wetland, which is man-made, has a diversity of open water, trees...
    Amita Bhaduriposted 2 years 6 months agoread more
  • Pranab Choudhury has been actively engaged with the causes of the poor and the environment for more than a decade. A senior development researcher, practitioner and a consultant at Baitarani Initiative office at Kalinga Nagar, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, he focuses on issues related to agriculture, forest,...
    makarandpurohitposted 2 years 6 months agoread more
  • Chennai’s drainage system--both natural and man-made--is unparalleled. Three rivers flow through the city--the Kosasthalaiyar to the north, the Cooum cutting right through the centre and the Adyar to the south; around 16 major drains criss-cross the metro in addition to the mammoth Buckingham cana...
    seetha@indiawat...posted 2 years 6 months agoread more
  • Deot Masih’s family has been extracting lotus root from the marshy land in his village near Gurdaspur for several decades. Delicate and crunchy, the edible roots are in high demand going as far as Srinagar in the north and Delhi in the south. Similar is the case with chestnut grown in this swamp. ...
    Manu Moudgilposted 2 years 6 months agoread more
  • A couple of Swan boats are lying beside the library wall. The cages to keep animals and birds are rusting while weeds have taken over the compound which hosts a few swings and a restaurant. The only indication of the spot being Kanjli wetland, one of the three Ramsar sites in Punjab, is the display ...
    Manu Moudgilposted 2 years 7 months agoread more
  • The Bhoj wetland is situated in the heart of Bhopal district in Madhya Pradesh. The wetland consists of two man-made lakes--the upper lake and the lower lake. The upper lake, the oldest among large man-made lakes in central India, was created by king Bhoj in the 11th century by constructing an earth...
    makarandpurohitposted 2 years 7 months agoread more
  • The past few months saw Karnataka and Tamil Nadu bickering over the sharing of the Cauvery water. It was the failure of the south-west monsoon that had put crops in Karnataka at risk, forcing the government to stop water supplies to Tamil Nadu. The arrival of the north-east monsoon in Tamil Nadu, ho...
    Manu Moudgilposted 2 years 7 months agoread more
  • SC sets aside Punjab's order quashing water-sharing agreement with Haryana In a follow up to the Supreme Court ruling to set aside the Punjab government's order quashing water-sharing agreement with Haryana, all Congress party MLAs and the Punjab congress chief captain Amarinder Singh sent in their...
    sabitakaushalposted 2 years 7 months agoread more
  • Long necked, rosy white birds with heavy pink bills stand etched across the horizon. These are the flamingos that fly miles from across Iran’s Caspian Sea and the Rann of Kutch in Gujarat, to reach the inland waters of Point Calimere Wildlife and Bird Sanctuary in Tamil Nadu. A natural coastal are...
    sabitakaushalposted 2 years 7 months agoread more
  • Set in India-ka-dil, Madhya Pradesh, is the unending expanse of Panna. A national park, declared tiger reserve in 1994 under Project Tiger--the government of India’s tiger conservation programme--the place gets a lot of wildlife buffs. The fragmented forest landscape of Panna supports other w...
    Amita Bhaduriposted 2 years 7 months agoread more
  • In his late 30s, Nilesh Heda is a renowned expert on issues related to fishing communities and wetland ecology. While doing his PhD on fish diversity, he worked with the fishing communities in Vidarbha in Maharashtra. He is currently heading an NGO, Samvardhan in Maharashtra's Washim district, that ...
    makarandpurohitposted 2 years 7 months agoread more
  • Senthil takes a long puff of the cigarette before flicking it on the road nonchalantly. “I started smoking on the sly when I was in school,” he reminisces. “Sixty years later, I still do the same, only more smokes per day.” Cigarette consumption is on the rise. Globally, about 5.8 trillion ...
    sabitakaushalposted 2 years 8 months agoread more
  • Harike wetland is the direct result of the Indus Water Treaty between India and Pakistan. To make best use of the waters of eastern rivers allotted to it, India constructed a barrage near the confluence of Beas and Satluj in 1952 from where two canals take water to the fields of Punjab and Rajasthan...
    Manu Moudgilposted 2 years 8 months agoread more
  • This is a simple guide that lists out the most popular questions related to wetlands, to understand what they are and their importance a little better. Please click on a topic for detailed information    What is a wetland? How is it defined? Why is there such a broad definition...
    sabitakaushalposted 2 years 8 months agoread more

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Sustainable agro-ecological farming is one way to overcome the limitations of conventional farming. Green College shows us how to do it.

Pitidri is a nondescript village that dots the rainshadow area of Purulia district in West Bengal. Droughts are common here even when the area is endowed with above average rainfall of over 1300 mm a year. Until some time ago, Urmila Mahato, a 42-year-old farmer from Pitidri had been struggling to ensure her family’s food security. Her family could barely sustain on the 18 quintals of paddy her small farm of two acres could produce in a year. Only one acre of her farm could be used for seasonal farming of vegetables due to lack of irrigation facilities.

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Alternative Futures: India Unshackled is a riveting new book that brings together scenarios of an India that is politically and socially egalitarian, radically democratic, economically sustainable and equitable, and socio-culturally diverse and harmonious. Edited by KJ Joy and Ashish Kothari, with a foreword by Shiv Vishwanathan, Alternative Futures: India Unshackled covers a wide range of issues, organized under four sections.

February 6, 2018 6:15PM
February 5, 2018 12:00PM

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A remarkable, first-ever collection of 35 essays on India’s future, by a diverse set of authors – activists, researchers, media practitioners.

Alternative Futures: India Unshackled is a book that brings together scenarios of an India that is politically and socially egalitarian, radically democratic, economically sustainable and equitable, and socio-culturally diverse and harmonious. Edited by KJ Joy and Ashish Kothari, with a foreword by Shiv Vishwanathan, Alternative Futures: India Unshackled covers a wide range of issues, organized under four sections.

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A study from Chhattisgarh finds that coal mining leads to severe health risks and environmental damage and questions the current policy emphasis on the use of coal for energy generation in India.

The coal mining sector is all set to receive a boost in India as the government plans to open up the sector to commercial players by 2018. Ten mines are in line for auctioning--four each from Odisha and Chhattisgarh and one each from Madhya Pradesh and Jharkhand.

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Temple sanctuaries of India play an important part in conserving fish diversity in rivers. River Mahanadi is an example.

Rivers hold a special place in Indian civilisation and culture. They are treated divine and temples are located along the course of rivers. Rivers, with a variety of mesohabitats in it, support rich and diverse native fauna and act as natural reserve of fish germplasm. In spite of the ecological and cultural relevance of rivers, they are mistreated in the country due to urbanisation and developmental activities causing the decline of riverine biodiversity.

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News this week

Saving the Ennore Creek: Chennai fisherfolk stage Jal Satyagraha

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The rich biodiversity of Thane Creek needs to be protected for it supports various flora and fauna with flamingos as its major attraction.

Thane Creek is an inlet along the shoreline of the Arabian Sea that isolates the city of Mumbai from the Indian mainland. It is Asia's largest creek with a length of 26 km. The creek is lined up with mangroves on both sides and plays host to a lot of species ranging from iconic flamingos to tiny crabs. 

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Policy matters this week

Hotels, industries, ashrams polluting the Ganga to be sealed

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A new project tries to save the ecologically diverse Chorao island by including the inhabitants of the island in conservation efforts.

Located just 5 km away from the capital city of Panaji, Chorao island, along the Mandovi river, is one of the largest islands in Goa. The island has a unique ecosystem that is different from the other sanctuaries in the state. The Chorao island in Mandovi is one of the best mangrove forests and houses most of the mangrove species found in Goa.

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In the last of a two-part series on the importance of conserving the Palk Bay, a video shows how trawling is spelling doom to the ecology of the bay.

The Palk Bay is an ecological paradise located between the island nation of Sri Lanka and the South East Peninsula India. The region separates the coastal areas of Tamil Nadu from the northern parts of Sri Lanka. From the coast of Tamil Nadu to that of Sri Lanka, the water rarely run deeper than 15 metres. The bay is one of India's most prominent fishing haunt. 

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