Current Affairs - September, 2018

Latest Current Affairs September, 2018 with Current Affairs, news summary on current events of National and International importance of September, 2018 for Banking, SSC, CLAT, UPSC, State PCS, IBPS, Railways and other Competitive Examinations.

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7th UNWTO Global Summit on Urban Tourism held in Seoul

7th UNWTO Global Summit on Urban Tourism was held in Seoul, capital of South Korea from 16 to 19 September, 2018. The theme of the summit was ‘A 2030 Vision for Urban Tourism’. The summit was co-organized by World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and Seoul Metropolitan Government and supported by Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism of South Korea Korea Tourism Organization and Seoul Tourism Organization.

UNWTO Global Summit on Urban Tourism

The summit provided unique platform to discuss key issues shaping future of urban tourism in the context of the 2030 Urban Agenda. It had brought together high-level representatives from National Tourism Administrations, city authorities and related stakeholders, serving as platform to exchange experiences and expertise. It et shared vision on urban tourism that embraces innovation, digital transformation and sustainability.

World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)

UNWTO is United Nations agency responsible for promotion of responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism.  It is leading international organization in the field of tourism, which promotes tourism as driver of economic growth, inclusive development and environmental sustainability. Its membership includes 156 countries, 6 territories and over 500 affiliate members representing private sector, tourism associations and local tourism authorities etc. Its headquarters are located in Madrid, Spain.

Functions

UNWTO offers leadership and support to sector in advancing knowledge and tourism policies worldwide. It serves as global forum for tourism policy issues and practical source of tourism knowledge. It encourages implementation of Global Code of Ethics for Tourism to maximize contribution of tourism to socio-economic development, while minimizing its possible negative impacts. It is committed to promoting tourism as instrument in achieving UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), geared towards eliminating poverty and fostering sustainable development and peace worldwide.

NITI Aayog calls for clear policy on shifting cultivation

NITI Aayog in its recently report has recommended that Ministry of Agriculture to take up mission on shifting cultivation to ensure inter-ministerial convergence between different ministries. The report was titled “Mission on Shifting Cultivation: Towards a Transformational Approach”.

Key Highlights of report

Central, State government departments of forests and environment, agriculture and allied departments have divergent approaches towards shifting cultivation. This creates confusion among grass-roots level workers and jhum farmer.

It calls for policy coherence and recognising land for shifting cultivation as agricultural land where farmers practise agro-forestry for production of food rather than as forestland. It also suggests that shifting cultivation fallows must be legally perceived and categorised as ‘regenerating fallows’ and credit facilities be extended to those who practise shifting cultivation.

It also addresses issue of food and nutritional security of communities involved in jhum cultivation during transition and transformation by broadening public distribution system (PDS) to ensure widespread access to cereals and other basic food items. It also noted that between 2000 and 2010, land under shifting cultivation dropped by 70 %.

Shifting Cultivation

It is traditional agricultural practice that involves clearing vegetative forest cover on land and slopes of hills, drying and burning it before onset of monsoon and cropping on it thereafter. After harvest, this land is left fallow and vegetative regeneration is allowed on it till the plot becomes reusable for same purpose in cycle.

In north east India, it is called as jhum cultivation. People involved in such cultivation are called Jhumia. Shifting cultivation is considered as important mainstay of food production for considerable population in northeast India in states like Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Mizoram, Meghalaya, Tripura and Manipur.

Shifting cultivation causes in long term causes problem of land degradation and threat to ecology of the region at large. Burning of forests provide temporary nutrients like potash to soil. Burning of forests results in emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs) such as CO2, NO2. It also increases surface run off of rainwater leading to soil erosion.

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