Print Friendly, PDF & Email

[Mission 2024] INSIGHTS DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS + PIB SUMMARY 1 March 2024

InstaLinks :  help you think beyond the issue but relevant to the issue from UPSC prelims and Mains exam point of view. These linkages provided in this ‘hint’ format help you frame possible questions ina your mind that might arise(or an examiner might imagine) from each current event. InstaLinks also connect every issue to their static or theoretical background. This helps you study a topic holistically and add new dimensions to every current event to help you think analytically

Table of Contents:

GS Paper 3:

  1. Global Waste Management Outlook 2024

 

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

  1. ‘Unlawful Association’
  2. Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF)
  3. Centre for Fourth Industrial Revolution (C4IR)
  4. Semiconductor Manufacturing
  5. India’s Gaganyaan mission
  6. Harit Nauka Initiative

  

Mapping

  1. Mudumalai Tiger Reserve

 


 

Global Waste Management Outlook 2024

GS Paper 3

 

Syllabus: Environment Conservation

 Context:  Global Waste Management Outlook 2024, published by UNEP and ISWA (International Solid Waste Association), assesses global waste management trends and costs.

 

Key findings:

  1. Municipal solid waste is predicted to grow from 2.3 billion to 3.8 billion tonnes by 2050.
  2. The global direct cost of waste management was estimated at USD 252 billion in 2020, expected to nearly double by 2050 without urgent action.
  3. Barriers in waste management: Lack of urgency recognition, incomplete data, and climate impact underestimation; Gendered aspects and informal sector undervaluation; Inadequate legislation, weak enforcement, and lack of enabling environment.

 

Recommendations:

  1. UNEP: Redefine waste as a resource
  2. By adopting circular economy models, which decouple waste generation from economic growth, there’s potential for a net gain of over USD 108 billion annually by 2050
  3. Utilize data and digitalization to enhance the waste management value chain.
  4. Replicate and scale up zero waste
  5. Implement producer responsibility fees to prioritize waste reduction and prevent greenwashing.
  6. Utilize behavioural science to engage people in waste reduction efforts.
  7. Harness the expertise of informal waste workers and recognize the influence of women in waste management.

 

Role of Innovative Waste Management Solutions

  1. Recycling Technologies: Advanced recycling technologies, such as chemical recycling, break down waste into its basic components which can be used to produce high-quality raw materials for new products.
  2. Robotic Waste Sorting: Artificial intelligence and machine learning are being used to improve waste separation efficiency.
    1. For instance, ZenRobotics has developed a robotic waste sorting system.
  3. Biodegradable Materials: The development of biodegradable and compostable materials helps reduce waste generation.
    1. g. Innovations in eco-friendly packaging, such as edible food containers and biodegradable plastics, are gaining traction.
  4. Biotechnology: The use of biotechnology, such as the development of fungi-based packaging materials, is on the rise.
  5. Circular Economy Principles: The implementation of circular economy principles in waste management keeps materials in use for longer periods, reducing waste generation and promoting resource efficiency.
  6. Zero Waste Strategies: The promotion of zero waste strategies helps reduce waste generation and minimize environmental pollution.
  7. Smart Solutions: Companies are developing smart solutions for waste management, transforming waste into energy and reusable products.
    1. g. companies like Ecube, and Enevo focus more on technology.
  8. Consumer Education: Companies also need to educate end users about sustainable and innovative solutions for waste management. This increases awareness and encourages responsible waste disposal.
  9. Government Regulations: Government regulations and policies can encourage the adoption of innovative waste management solutions. These can include incentives for recycling and penalties for improper waste disposal.
  10. Collaboration Across Value Chains: Phool, an Indian start-up, collects floral waste from temples and transforms it into charcoal-free incense sticks and biodegradable packaging material.

 

Importance of Waste-to-energy (WtE):

 

WtE refers to a group of technologies that convert non-recyclable waste into usable forms of energy, primarily electricity and heat. This is often done through direct combustion using waste incinerators i.e. burning the waste or the production of a combustible fuel from a gas such as methane.

  

WtE plants play a vital role:

  1. Energy generation: Waste-to-energy (WtE) plants contribute to electricity generation by harnessing the calorific value of solid waste.
    • Eg: India has a total installed capacity of over 554MW from WtE plants.
  2. Waste reduction: WtE helps in reducing the volume of solid waste, minimizing the burden on landfills and improving overall waste management.
    • Eg: Incineration reduces the volume of waste by up to 90%, aiding in efficient disposal.
  3. Remote and rural energy solution: WtE plants can play a crucial role in addressing energy deficits in remote and rural areas. They can produce electricity from waste generated locally, reducing reliance on centralized grids and expensive diesel generators.
    • g.: Biogas plants at the village level supported by the National Biogas programme.
  4. Resource utilization: WtE facilities recover valuable resources from waste, such as metals and certain chemicals, promoting resource conservation.
  5. Environmental benefits: Properly managed WtE can contribute to reducing methane emissions from landfills, thereby mitigating greenhouse gas effects.

  

Government Initiatives:

Initiative Description
Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) Mechanism EPR holds producers accountable for the lifecycle of their products, including collection, recycling, and disposal. It aims to reduce environmental impact by shifting waste management responsibility to producers.
Waste Processing Capacity Significant increase in waste processing capacity since 2014, covering various waste types like solid, hazardous, biomedical, E-waste, plastic, and construction and demolition waste. Notable growth observed under the Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban).
Swachh Bharat Mission for Solid Waste Management Government initiative targeting “Garbage Free Cities” through door-to-door collection, source segregation, and scientific waste processing. Focus areas include source segregation, single-use plastic reduction, construction waste management, and legacy waste site remediation.
Waste Management Rules and Guidelines Implementation of various waste management rules and guidelines under the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986, covering solid waste, plastic waste, biomedical waste, construction waste, hazardous waste, E-waste, and battery waste. Emphasis on environmentally sound practices.

  

What is Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR)?

 It is a policy approach and environmental strategy that places the responsibility for the entire lifecycle of a product, including its disposal, on the manufacturer or producer rather than on the end consumer or local government.

 

The fundamental idea behind EPR is to encourage producers to minimize the environmental impact of their products by considering their entire lifecycle, from the design and production phase to the end-of-life phase.

  

Key provisions of the Plastic Waste Management Amendment Rules, 2022

Key Provisions Description
Provision of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) Plastic packaging producers are accountable for end-of-life collection and recycling, incentivizing sustainable design and recyclable material use. This shift reduces municipal burden and ensures responsible disposal.
Collection Targets Mandates producers to collect 35% of plastic waste by 2024, escalating to 70% by 2025 in phases, ensuring higher collection rates and mitigating environmental pollution.
Minimum Recycled Content Requires firms to use 10% recycled plastic in packaging by 2023, increasing to 20% by 2026, fostering the growth of the recycling industry and reducing virgin plastic production.
Collection Mechanism Producers must establish collection systems, individually or collectively, ensuring efficient post-consumer waste retrieval for recycling, preventing landfilling and environmental pollution.
Cost Attribution Producers bear collection and recycling costs, incentivizing sustainable practices and discouraging non-recyclable material use. This financial responsibility promotes environmental stewardship and reduces plastic pollution.

  

Conclusion:

The key to sustainable waste management lies in a holistic approach. Prioritizing source reduction and waste minimization through awareness campaigns and responsible consumption patterns should be paramount which is also an emphasis under SDG Goal-12.

 

Insta Links:

  1. Swachh Bharat Abhiyan: A Critical Review
  2. 75% of Villages Are Now ODF Plus under Swachh Bharat Mission – Grameen

 

Prelims Links:

As per the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016 in India, which one of the following statements is correct? (UPSC 2019)

(a) Waste generator has to segregate waste into five categories.

(b) The Rules are applicable to notified urban local bodies, notified towns and all industrial townships only.

(c) The Rules provide for exact and elaborate criteria for the identification of sites for landfills and waste processing facilities.

(d) It is mandatory on the part of the waste generator that the waste generated in one district cannot be moved to another district.

 

Ans: (c)

‘Unlawful Association’

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

 

Source: PIB

 Context: The government has extended the ban on ‘Jamaat-e-Islami Jammu Kashmir’ as an ‘Unlawful Association’ for another five years under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) 1967.

 

This extension comes after the outfit was initially declared unlawful on February 28, 2019. Jamaat-e-Islami Jammu Kashmir has been involved in fostering terrorism and anti-India propaganda, leading to secessionist sentiments in Jammu and Kashmir.

 

What is an ‘Unlawful Association’?

An ‘Unlawful Association’ refers to an organization or group that has been deemed illegal or prohibited by the government due to its involvement in activities that pose a threat to national security, sovereignty, or integrity.

 

What is UAPA?

The Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) is an anti-terrorism law enacted in India (in 1967) with the aim of preventing unlawful activities and combating terrorism.  The Act assigns absolute power to the central government, by way of which if the Centre deems an activity as unlawful then it may, by way of an Official Gazette, declare it so.

  

Key features of UAPA: 

  • Under UAPA, both Indian and foreign nationals can be charged.
  • It will be applicable to the offenders in the same manner, even if the crime is committed in a foreign land, outside India.
  • It has the death penalty and life imprisonment as the highest punishments.
  • Under the UAPA, the investigating agency can file a charge sheet in maximum of 180 days after the arrests and the duration can be extended further after intimating the court.
  • As per amendments of 2019: The Act empowers the Director General of National Investigation Agency (NIA)to grant approval of seizure or attachment of property when the case is investigated by the said agency.
  • The Act empowers the officers of the NIA, of the rank of Inspector or above, to investigate cases of terrorism in addition to those conducted by the DSP or ACP or above rank officer in the state.
  • It also included the provision of designating an individual as a terrorist.

Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF)

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

Source: OCHA

 Context: The UN has allocated US$100 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) to support underfunded humanitarian crises in seven countries across Africa, the Americas, and the Middle East.

 

About UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF)

It was established in 2005 by the UN General Assembly to provide rapid and life-saving assistance to vulnerable populations during humanitarian crises. Managed by the Emergency Relief Coordinator on behalf of the UN Secretary-General, CERF releases resources for underfunded emergencies twice a year. It addresses critical funding gaps exacerbated by increased global conflicts, climate-induced disasters, and poly-crisis phenomena. The fund is replenished annually through contributions from governments, the private sector, foundations, and individuals. CERF’s allocations are divided into:

 

  1. Rapid Responses: providing immediate aid during sudden crises
  2. Underfunded Emergencies support countries facing prolonged humanitarian challenges.

Semiconductor Manufacturing

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

 

Source: Zee Business

Context: The Union Cabinet, led by the PM, approved the establishment of three semiconductor units as part of the ‘Development of Semiconductors and Display Manufacturing Ecosystems in India’ initiative.

 

The approved units include:

  1. Semiconductor Fab in (Dholera) Gujarat
  2. Semiconductor ATMP unit in Morigaon, Assam
  3. Semiconductor ATMP unit for specialized chips in Sanand (Gujarat)

Aim: These units are poised to generate significant employment opportunities and accelerate India’s capabilities in chip fabrication and advanced packaging technologies

 

What are Semiconductor and its Fabrication? 

Semiconductors are materials that have electrical conductivity between that of a conductor and an insulator. They are crucial components in electronic devices, enabling the control and flow of electrical current.

Semiconductor fabrication, often referred to as “fab,” is the process of manufacturing semiconductor devices, such as integrated circuits (ICs) and transistors, on semiconductor wafers. This involves various steps including wafer preparation, deposition, lithography, etching, doping, and packaging.

Centre for Fourth Industrial Revolution (C4IR)

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

 

Source: TH

 Context: The World Economic Forum’s Centre for Fourth Industrial Revolution (C4IR) was inaugurated during BioAsia 2024 in Hyderabad.

 

Aim: It aims to create 10,000 job opportunities in health tech, support emerging companies, and generate novel ideas.

  1. The focus areas include real-world evidence, healthcare analytics, and informatics.
  2. Initiatives like a clinical registry, innovation sandbox, and data analytics lab are underway.
  3. The centre aims to develop industry-ready talent through skilling programs.

 

 

What is C4IR?

C4IR stands for the Centre for Fourth Industrial Revolution. It is an initiative by the World Economic Forum (WEF) to establish centres that focus on harnessing the potential of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) technologies and driving collaboration between governments, businesses, and academia to address global challenges and opportunities.

 

 

About 4IR: 

The Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR), also known as the Digital Revolution, is characterized by the integration of technologies that blend the physical, digital, and biological realms. Coined by Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the WEF, 4IR includes technologies such as IoT, robotics, VR, AI, quantum computing, and 3D printing. It brings about advancements in technology, boosts productivity and efficiency, contributes to economic growth, and facilitates good governance.

 

About WEF: 

The World Economic Forum is an international non-governmental organization for public–private sector collaboration based in Cologny, Canton of Geneva, Switzerland. It was founded on 24 January 1971 by German engineer Klaus Schwab.

India’s Gaganyaan mission

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

 

Source: HT

Context: The Prime Minister announced the names of the four astronauts undergoing training for India’s Gaganyaan mission during his visit to the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre.

  • The astronauts are Group Captain Prashanth Balakrishnan Nair, Group Captain Ajit Krishnan, Group Captain Angad Pratap, and Wing Commander Subhanshu Shukla.

 

The PM also inaugurated three major space infrastructure projects of ISRO during his visit:

 

Project Description
PSLV Integration Facility (PIF) Boosts frequency of Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) launches from 6 to 15 per year
Caters to launches of Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) and other small launch vehicles designed by private space companies.
PSLV is a four-stage launch vehicle capable of launching satellites into Geosynchronous and Geostationary orbits
SSLV is a 3-stage Launch Vehicle capable of launching satellites in low earth orbit at low cost
Semi-cryogenics Integrated Engine and Stage Test facility Enables the development of semi-cryogenic engines and stages, which will increase the payload capability of present launch vehicles.
Equipped with liquid Oxygen and kerosene supply systems to test engines up to 200 tons of thrust.
Trisonic Wind Tunnel at VSSC Used for aerodynamic testing for characterization of rockets and aircraft during flight in the atmospheric regime.
The Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) is the leading centre of the ISRO, named after Dr. Vikram A Sarabhai, the pioneer of the Indian space program. The Virtual Launch Control Centre (VLCC) at VSSC plays a crucial role in overseeing launches, and conducting system checks remotely for optimal mission performance.

Top of Form

 

About Gaganyaan Mission:

Aspect Description
About The Gaganyaan mission is aimed at demonstrating ISRO’s human spaceflight capability by launching a human crew to an orbit of 400 km and safely bringing them back to Earth.
Launch Vehicle The GSLV Mk III, also known as LVM-3, will serve as the launch vehicle for the Gaganyaan mission. It has been reconfigured to meet human safety standards and is now called Human-Rated LVM-3.
Astronaut Training The astronauts selected for the Gaganyaan mission underwent training in Russia, where they will be acquainted with flying in weightless conditions.
Collaborative Endeavors Various entities including the Indian Armed Forces, Defence Research Development Organization, Indian Meteorological Department, Indian maritime agencies, academic institutes, CSIR Labs, and industry partners are collaborating for the success of the Gaganyaan mission.
Aims & Objectives The mission aims to demonstrate India’s capability to launch humans into low earth orbit and back safely, while also inspiring people to pursue careers in Science and Technology.
Integral Components of Spacecraft The spacecraft comprises the Orbital Module (OM), Service Module (SM), and Crew Module (CM). The OM orbits the Earth and consists of advanced avionics systems. The SM supports the CM while in orbit, providing necessary systems and mechanisms. The CM provides a human-friendly environment in space.
Mission Stages and Milestones The mission involves stages such as the Integrated AirDrop Test (IADT) to test the Parachute Deceleration System, the Pad Abort Test (PAT) to check the spacecraft’s launch abort system, the Crew Abort Test Mission to simulate abort conditions, and the manned flight where a human astronaut will be launched and safely brought back to Earth.
Vyomitra Vyomitra, a humanoid robot, will be on board the second uncrewed Gaganyaan mission to perform microgravity experiments and monitor module parameters. It simulates human functions and can detect environmental changes within the cabin.
Manned Flight The final phase of the mission involves launching a human astronaut into space and safely returning them to Earth through a soft landing in the Arabian Sea off the coast of Gujarat. This phase is the culmination of the mission, following rigorous testing and preparation stages.

Harit Nauka Initiative

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

 

Source: ET

 Context: PM Modi will inaugurate India’s first green hydrogen fuel cell inland waterway vessel as part of the National Green Hydrogen Mission.

 

What is Harit Nauka initiative? 

The Harit Nauka initiative is a program launched by the Ministry of Ports, Shipping, and Waterways aimed at promoting the adoption of greener technologies in inland waterway vessels. It focuses on shifting inland vessels towards sustainable alternatives, such as hydrogen fuel cells, to reduce environmental impact.

This initiative aims to establish the V.O.Chidambaranar Port as India’s first Green Hydrogen Hub Port, with projects including a desalination plant and hydrogen production facility.

 

The National Green Hydrogen Mission, launched in 2023, seeks to make India a global hub for green hydrogen production, usage, and export.

Mudumalai Tiger Reserve  

Mapping

 

Source: TH

 Context: The first-ever herpetofaunal survey in Mudumalai Tiger Reserve recorded 82 species of reptiles and amphibians. Conducted in February, it covered Theppakadu, Kargudi, and Nilakottai forest ranges.

Aim: The survey aimed to estimate the region’s diversity and aid conservation efforts. It identified species like the Indian rock python and mugger crocodile, guiding species-specific conservation plans.

 

What is herpetofaunal survey?

A herpetofaunal survey is a systematic study conducted to document and assess the diversity, distribution, abundance, and ecology of reptiles and amphibians within a specific geographical area.

 

About Mudumalai Tiger Reserve 

Mudumalai Tiger Reserve is located in the Nilgiris District of Tamil Nadu state at the tri-junction of three states, viz, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu. It is a part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve (1st Biosphere Reserve in India). The Reserve has tall grasses, commonly referred to as ‘Elephant Grass’

 

Download the Daily Current Affairs in PDF Format here

 


Follow us on our Official TELEGRAM Channel HERE

Subscribe to Our Official YouTube Channel HERE

Please subscribe to Our podcast channel HERE

Official Facebook Page HERE

Follow our Twitter Account HERE

Follow our Instagram Account HERE

Follow us on LinkedIn: HERE