Current Affairs Nov 2017 - Environment


1 - New species of Orangutan identified in Sumatra


Researchers have discovered new species of Orangutan in northern Sumatra. North Sumatra is a large island located in the western Indonesian island of Sumatra, between the Malacca Strait and the Indian Ocean. This new species is named as Pongo tapanuliensis or Tapanuli Orangutan. Orangutan’s are considered as most distinct among great apes family, which includes gorillas, chimpanzees and bonobos.

Pongo tapanuliensis or Tapanuli Orangutan are found in population of 800 across a 1,000km2 area, due to which they are considered as threatened species.

2 - India’s first Blackbuck conservation reserve to be established in Allahabad of UP state


The State cabinet of Uttar Pradesh approved set up of Blackbuck Conservation Reserve in the Meja forest division of Allahabad city of state Uttar Pradesh. Around 126 hectares in the trans-Yamuna region of Allahabad will have conservation reserve. It has been estimated that around 350 blackbucks reside in Meja forest division of Allahabad.

Blackbuck is found in the plains of India, confined to areas of Maharashtra, Odisha, Punjab, Rajasthan, Haryana, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. Blackbucks are known for their spiral horns and coat color contrasts.

3 - India Pavilion launched at COP 23 in Germany

India Pavilion

Union Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Dr. Harsh Vardhan launched India Pavilion at COP 23, in Bonn, Germany thus representing India’s theme “Conserving Now, Preserving Future” at the 23rd United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change meeting.

Indian delegation organized 20 sessions and discussed issues on climate change adaptation, mitigation, clean technology innovation and renewable energy. India presented climate change related actionable under the themes of Climate Justice and Sustainable Lifestyles.

4 - MNRE organized panel discussion at CoP 23, Bonn, Germany


The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), Government of India, in partnership with the Confederation of Indian Industry, organized a panel discussion on ‘Innovative Financing and Market Evolution to achieve 175 GW renewables by 2022’ at the India Pavilion at Conference of Parties (CoP) 23, Bonn, Germany.

Panel stressed upon the need to push for higher research in storage technology, which could compliment the infirm renewable power. The panel included Dr. P.C. Maithani, Adviser, MNRE, Shri C.K. Mishra, Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Dr. Ajay Mathur, DG, The Energy and Resources Institute and Mr. Frank Determann, KfW Development Bank.

5 - ‘UN Climate Change’ conference concluded

UN Climate Change

The UN Climate Change Conference (COP23) concluded in Bonn, Germany. Envoys from nearly 200 countries, including delegates from Washington, negotiated on implementing the Paris climate change agreement including a rulebook to be adopted in 2018 and for enacting the global deal reached to cheers and champagne in 2015.

US expressed desire to withdraw from the Paris agreement; however, it would continue to be a leader in clean energy and innovation. The Paris pact commits countries to limiting average global warming to under two degrees Celsius over Industrial Revolution levels, and 1.5 Celsius if possible, to avert worst-case scenario climate change.

6 - Environmentalists recorded 130 butterfly species during butterfly & biodiversity meet


In Arunachal Pradesh, a team of environmentalists including entomologists and wildlife experts recorded 130 butterfly species during the second edition of Butterfly & Biodiversity meet. The team had conducted survey on the Butterfly species in the natural vegetation, which is in the foothill areas near Pasighat town.

Siang valley, adjacent to Dihang-Dibang Biosphere Reserve, is suitable habitat of a variety of butterflies. The natural flora endowed with evergreen forests and angiosperms and perennial streams support comfortable survival and natural breeding of the winged species.