Environment Current Affairs

Australian court revokes environmental approval for Adani’s Carmichael coal mine

Adani Mining got set back from Australia’s Federal court as it overturned its government environmental approval for the Carmichael coal mine under construction in the Australian.

Adani’s project of USD 16 billion was overturned by Federal court as Environmentalist claimed the project will damage the Great Barrier Reef, groundwater at its site and it carbon emissions.

Australian Federal Court strike down Environment Ministry’s 2014 approval to Adani Mining as it fails to include conditions to protect the yakka skink and ornamental snake.

Under this project Adani had planned to ship millions tonnes of coal a year to India but faced opposition from environmentalist since it started work on the mine in 2010.

In reply to court order Adani stated that the there was technical error from Environment Ministry in presenting certain document while finalising approval and will re-apply for approval by meeting all necessary terms.

Carmichael Coal Mine:

It is a proposed coal mine in the north of the Galilee Basin owned by Adani Mining. The produce of 60 million tonnes of coal a year with total extract of 4 billion tonnes is expected from this mine.

The operating life of the mine is estimated to 90 years and will be the largest in Australia. The major extract from this mine is planned to be exported to India.

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India foils UK Company’s bid to patent its traditional knowledge for treating hair loss

India has foiled UK based company Pangaea Laboratories Limited’s bid to patent use of pine bark, turmeric and tea for treating hair loss.

India was able to protect its traditional knowledge after Traditional Knowledge Digital Library (TKDL), a unit of Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) had filed pre-grant opposition against UK based company along with prior-art evidences using these 3 natural ingredients.

In February 2011, Pangaea Laboratories Limited had filed patent application at European Patent office (EPO) on a medicinal composition for treating hair loss which mainly contained pine bark, turmeric and green tea.

It should be noted in Indian systems of medicine like Ayurveda and Unani, it has been proved that above three natural ingredients are being used as a treatment for hair loss, since ancient times.

Till date TKDL under the aegis of CSIR has achieved success in protecting India’s traditional knowledge in about 200 such cases without any cost. Earlier, TKDL also had foiled an attempt of Colgate-Palmolive Company to patent a mouthwash formula containing herb extract from Nutmeg- Jayaphal which is traditionally used in India as medicine to cure oral diseases.

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15 Gharials to be released in Beas belt in Punjab to boost tourism

Punjab government has announced to release 15 Gharials in the Beas belt, near Harike Patan in order boost tourism.

The Gharials species will be released as part of state government’s plan to make Beas belt, a natural habitat of the fish-eating crocodile species.

The release of Gharials has been planned in February-March 2015 near Karmowal village (near Harike Patan water bodies) by the Experts from World Wide Fund for Nature (WWFN).

Karmowal village has ample water bodies with sand banks making it suitable site for developing as habitat for the species. Gharials will be released depending upon the success of the initial phase of making natural habitat and after the release they will be kept under close watch.

About Gharial

  • Gharial (Gavialis gangeticus) is also known as the gavial.  It is last surviving species of the family Gavialidae.
  • It is a fish-eating crocodile and belongs to one of the three crocodilian species found in the Indian Sub-Continent.
  • In historic times it was present in Indus River system, including Beas and Sutlej rivers, indicating healthy river system.
  • Protection Status: It is listed in Schedule I of Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972. It is also listed as Critically Endangered in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Endangered Species.

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