- Gujarat’s rivers are degenerating
- The National Green Tribunal (NGT) had directed Gujarat to take immediate note of the deteriorating condition of 20 rivers, of which five were classified under priority 1. Under this category, the rivers had some of the highest values of biological oxygen demand (BOD), which measures the amount of decaying organic matter in rivers.
- The NGT order says that river water is considered to be fit for bathing when it meets the criterion of bearing a BOD value of less than 3 milligram per litre (mg/L). Bhadar river in Rajkot, between Jetpur and Saran villages, with the BOD level of 426 mg/L, is the third most polluted stretch in the country. The Khari river between Lali and Kashipura villages with the BOD level of 235 mg/L is the sixth worst polluted stretch.
- Other rivers like Bhogavo between Surendranagar and Nana Kerala registered the BOD value of 67 mg/L. While in South Gujarat, Amlakhadi stream between Pungum and Bharuch city recorded BOD levels between 40 mg/L and 45 mg/L.
- UNESCO adds Jamaican reggae, Georgian wrestling and Japanese rituals in coveted list of intangible heritage
- UN cultural agency UNESCO has added six new elements viz. Jamaican reggae, Georgian wrestling and Japanese ritual into its coveted list of “intangible heritage”.
- They were added at UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage meeting held in Mauritius’
- This coveted list is made up of those intangible heritage elements that help demonstrate diversity of cultural heritage and raise awareness about its importance.
- The list was established in 2008 when Convention for Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage came into effect. It includes important intangible cultural heritages worldwide.
- Cope India 2019: India, US air exercise to be held in West Bengal
- Indian Air Force (IAF) and US Air Force (USAF) will participate in bilateral exercise ‘COPE INDIA 2019’ – scheduled to be held between December 3 and 14, 2019 in West Bengal.
- The bilateral flying training programme will be held at two important airbases in West Bengal – Air Force Station Arjan Singh at Panagarh.
- Cope India is series of international Air Force exercises between Indian Air Force (IAF) and United States Air Force (USAF) conducted on and over Indian soil.
- The exercise was repeated in 2005, 2006, 2009 and was last held in 2010.
· EU sets goal to be climate neutral by 2050
- The European Union urged government, businesses, citizens, and regions to join it in an ambitious plan to cut emissions and make the bloc carbon neutral by 2050.
- The block is kicking off a process to determine how Europe’s energy and climate policy will evolve between now and 2050.
- The member states will submit their draft national climate and energy plans to the EU by the end of 2018.
- Delegations from more than 200 countries are due in Poland next week for the latest COP24 climate summit, aimed at renewing and building on the Paris deal and limiting global
- eDrishti software launched to help Railways Minister keep track of punctuality of trains
- Indian Railways unveiled ‘eDrishti’ software that will help Union Railway Minister to keep track of punctuality of trains as well as freight and passenger earnings and much more from anywhere in the country.
- The software has been developed by Centre for Railway Information System (CRIS) to help Minister keep track of all information related to Indian Railways, one of the world’s largest rail networks.
- Using this software, Railway Minister can track any information with just a click of mouse — whether from his office or while on the move.
· Union Government launches Bhasha Sangam to introduce school students to 22 Indian languages
- The Government launched ‘Bhasha Sangam’, a unique initiative to introduce school students to 22 Indian languages.
- Bhasha Sangam launched under Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat.
- It is a programme for schools and educational institutions to offer multilingual exposure to students in Indian languages.
- The main aim is to improve linguistic tolerance and respect and promote national integration.
- First Global Aviation Summit to be held in Mumbai
- Supported by ICAO, IATA, ACI and CANSO, the 1st Global Aviation Summit will be held on January 15 and 16, 2019at The Grand Hyatt in Mumbai.
- It aims to focus on the celebration of ‘Flying for All‘ and to provide a platform to the aviation fraternity to highlight the challenges of the sector in the newly-developing growth spots.
· Indian Owl Festival, Indias first owl fest, held in Pune
- The Indian Owl Festival,India’s first owl fest, was held at Pingori villagein Purandar taluka of Pune, Maharashtra.
- The festival was organized by Ela Foundation.
- It created awareness on owl conservation and feature art forms like pictures, paintings, lanterns, lamp shades, posters, origami, stitched articles, poems and stories on owls.
· New policy to allow drones as taxi, delivery vehicles
- The ministry of civil aviation is set to allow the commercial use of drones as taxis and delivery vehicles, and permit their operation beyond the visual line of sight under its Drone 2.0 policy, which is likely to take effect by March 2019 and open up a raft of business opportunities.
- In August, the ministry released its Drone 1.0 policy, which will make it legal for Individuals and companies to operate drones from December 1 in areas other than those barred for security reasons. The ministry, however, held back approval of the commercial use of drones — as taxis, delivery vehicles, and other services .
- Drone 2.0, the draft of which will be released at a global aviation summit on January 15, 2019, and be open for public feedback for 30 days, will make such commercial use legal.
- According to the ministry, the Digital Sky Platform will be the first-of-its-kind national unmanned traffic management (UTM) portal to implement a ‘no permission, no take-off’ (NPNT) policy for remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) that are not of ‘nano ‘ size.
- UAS stands for unmanned aerial systems while UAV means unmanned aerial vehicle.
- UAS and UAVs pertain to any aircraft that can fly without a pilot in it. It operates either autonomously or through a remote control (RC) on the ground. The military, however, prefers to use the term UAS.
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