Gujarat Current Affairs
The 27th Fusion Energy Conference (FEC 2018) was held in Gandhinagar, Gujarat. The six-day event is organised by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and hosted by Department of Atomic Energy and Gandhinagar-based Institute of Plasma Research.
The aim of FEC 2018 was to provide forum for discussion of key physics and technology issues as well as innovative concepts of direct relevance to the use of nuclear fusion (reaction that powers Sun and stars) as a source of energy. During this conference, experts from across the world discussed innovative concepts on using nuclear fusion as source of energy. They also discussed new challenges being faced by fusion community in the light of a number of next-step fusion devices being implemented currently. Among participants included international bodies like ITER Organisation and European Atomic Energy Community (Euratom). The research institutes involved in developing smaller plasma devices also participated.
Gujarat Forest Department has started vaccination of lions in Gir sanctuary to protect them from a deadly canine distemper virus (CDV) and protozoa infections. The virus is blamed for the death of as many as 23 lions in Gujarat’s Gir sanctuary in less than month. The segregated lions are being vaccinated under intensive veterinary care and as per standard protocol and with consultations of national & International lion experts.
Asiatic lions are cousins of the African lion. They are believed to have split away 100,000 years ago. They are slightly smaller and have distinctive fold of skin along their bellies. Gir sanctuary is the only wild population of Asiatic lions in the world. According to the last census conducted in 2015, the number of lions in Gir sanctuary stood at 523. It is listed in Schedule I of Wildlife (Protection) Act 1972, has been categories as Endangered on IUCN Red List and is listed Appendix I of CITES.
Canine distemper virus (CDV)
CDV is highly contagious disease that attacks gastrointestinal, respiratory, central nervous systems, immune system and other vital organs in animals. In most of the cases, the infection is fatal. It is mainly found in wild dogs, jackals and wolves. The disease can be contracted by lions if they eat any animal infected by it. CDV is considered dangerous virus and is blamed for wiping out 30% population of African lions in East African forests.