STUDY MATERIAL FOR DISTANCE LEARNING STUDENTS By: Prof. Sateeshchandra Joshi Course Title: Environmental Studies Objectives: 1. To understand the environmental aspects and its impacts on human life. 2. To create awareness about the environmental issues having global relevance.
Unit No. 1. 2. Topics The multidisciplinary nature of environmental studies- Definition, scope and importance, Need for public awareness. Natural Resources: a) Renewable and non-renewable resources: Forest resources, Use and over-exploitation, deforestation, case studies. Timber extraction, mining, dams and their efforts on forests and tribal people b) Water resources: Use and over-utilization of surface and ground water, floods, drought, conflicts over water, dams-benefits and problems c) Mineral resources: Use and exploitation, environmental effects of extracting and using mineral resources’, case studies d) Food resources: World foods problems, changes caused by agriculture and overgrazing, effects of modern agriculture, fertilizer – pesticide problems, Water logging, salinity, case studies e) Energy resources: growing energy needs, renewable and renewable energy resources, use of alternate energy sources f) Land resources: land as a resource, land degradation, man induced landslides, desertification. Role of an individual in conservation of natural resources. Equitable use of resources for sustainable lifestyles. Ecosystems- Concept of an ecosystem, Structure and function of an ecosystem, Producers, consumers and decomposers, Energy flow of the ecosystem, Ecological succession, Food chains, food webs and ecological pyramids, Introduction, types, characteristics features, structure and function of the following ecosystem, Forest ecosystem, Grassland ecosystem, Desert ecosystem, Aquatic ecosystems [ponds, Streams, lakes, rivers, estuaries] Biodiversity and its conservation- Introduction, Definition: genetic, species and ecosystem diversity, Biogeographically classification of India, Value of biodiversity, consumptive use, productive use, social, ethical, aesthetic and option values, India as a mega-diversity nation, Hot-spots of biodiversity, Threats to biodiversity, habitat loss, poaching of wildlife, man-wildlife conflicts, Endangered and endemic species of
2 India, Conservation of biodiversity: In-situ and Ex-situ conservation of biodiversity. Environmental Pollution: Definition: causes, effects and control measures of – Air pollution, Water pollution, Soil pollution, Marine pollution, Noise pollution, Thermal pollution, Nuclear hazards, Solid waste management: causes, effects and control measures of urban and industrial water, role of an individual in prevention of pollution, pollution case studies, Disaster management: floods, earthquake, cyclone and landslides. Social Issues and the Environment- from unsustainable to sustainable development, Urban problems related to energy, Water conservation, rain harvesting, watershed management, Resettlement and rehabilitation of people, its problems and concerns Case studies, Environmental ethics, Issues and possible solutions, Wasteland reclamation, Consumerism and waste products, Environmental protection Act- Air(presentation and control of pollution) Act, Water(prevention and control of pollution) Act, Wildlife Protection Act, Issues involved in enforcement of environmental legislation, Public awareness. Human Pollution and the Environment: Population growth, variation among nations, population explosion-family welfare program, Environment and human health, Human rights, Value Education, HIV/AIDS, Women and Child Welfare, Role of Information Technology in Environment and human health, case studies. Field Work: Visit to a local area to document environment assetsriver/forest/grassland/hill/mountain, Visit to a local polluted siteurban/rural/industrial/agricultural, study of common plants, insects, birds, study of simple ecosystems- pond, river, hill slopes etc.
Unit 1: NATURE, SCOPE AND IMPORTANCE OF ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES- THE MULTIDISCIPLINARY NATURE OF STUDIES
Topics: Definition, scope and importance, Need for public awareness Objectives: • • • • To know the nature of the subject Environmental Studies To ascertain need and scope the subject To digest as to how the subject is interdisciplinary To learn the need to create awareness for environmental issues
Environment is sum total of water, air and land, inter-relationships among themselves and also with the human beings, other living organisms and property.” In order to study environment one needs knowledge inputs from various disciplines. At the threshold of the 21st century, we are confronted with two conflicting scenario for the future of human kind. On one hand, there are possibilities of a bright future with press button living, space shuttles, information technology, genetic engineering and such other advances in science and technology. On the other hand, a grim scenario is looming large with burgeoning population, starved of resources and choked by pollution. Faced with such imminent threat, there is a growing realization that rational utilization of environmental endowments of life support systems like water, air and soil is a must for sustainable development. Academic disciplines are created to help us understand the universe better. While nature can be understood using the disciplines, it not ‘divided’ into disciplines. For instance, a certain phenomenon may be referred to as a chemical change while another as a physical one. But these categories are only perceptions. ‘Environmental studies’ is about the environment. Not the environment from the point of view of any one particular discipline, but a study and understanding of the interlink-ages- the complex ways in which one phenomenon, one action, is connected to another, how the same thing can be understood from different perspectives, perspectives often rooted in different disciplines.
air. which in recent time has evolved into ecology. the study of environmental factors that affect organisms and how organisms interact with these factors and with each other. they have to be fully aware of environmental consequences. it is difficult to think of a timelier introduction of this subject in the matter of study for modern management courses. resource utilization and ecosystem. One of the most urgent tasks of our times to understand the implications of environmental damage and resource depletion that we witness today. ‘Environmental studies’ not only represents but also promotes the principles of environmental management. such as chemistry. biology. This is the discipline of natural history. we need to bring out a comprehensive study which would be useful both for educational institutions and corporate world. measures and programs for environmental studies. It is through this perplexity. Alongside. all have to be sensitive to environmental issues. Traditionally. In such a scenario. In broadest sense. it is appropriate to have an introduction to environmental studies. living and anthropological environments. atmospheric. ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE OR STUDIES? Environmental science in its broadest sense is the science of complex interactions that occurs among the terrestrial. general public and leaders. sociology and government that affect or describe these interactions. We must learn how to manage our environment. environmental science has evolved from investigations of the ways by which. Not only that.4 The problems of pollution and wanton degradation of environmental resources cannot be solved without proper understanding of their causes and effects. To a significant degree. We cannot ignore study of relationship between ecological devastation and deteriorating human conditions. teachers. it is necessary to build up professional capabilities to develop and adopt policies. It is absolutely the truth that environmental degradation is increasingly undermining over lives. habits and attitudes. environmental science may be defined as the study of the earth. and place in which living organisms carry out their life cycles. For the students of management schools. who are future managers of business in different sectors of economic growth and social welfare. The students. the geosphere and the biosphere. workers and executives and government as well as non-governmental organizations. the hydrosphere. environmental science is divided among the study of the atmosphere. It includes all the disciplines.
. Some of the environmental issues are perplex. water and living environments and the effects of technology thereon. of their actions.
economic planning. UK etc. The discipline that deals specifically with the effects of environmental chemical species on life is environmental biochemistry. Environment and Economics Economic environment refers to all these factors or forces which contribute to economic impact on the man. effects. and air environments and the effects of technology thereon. Environmental Science and Chemisty: This relation is known as environmental chemistry. their degradation. and fates of chemical species in water. infrastructure and the various stages in the economic development like economic conditions. Resources. Whereas the other regions which had poor resource concentration and which are still in developing stage have come to be known as developing countries.5 Environmental science is now a mature. reactions. One of environmental chemistry’s major challenges is the determination of the nature and quantity of specific pollutants in the environments. economic system and trade cycle. So it is economic environment of a region or country that decides its status i. 2. Examples of such countries are USA. Biological processes not only are profoundly influenced by chemical species in the environment. agriculture. transport. These gifted regions have exploited these resources for their economic developments and have come to be known as developed countries. and even their syntheses. The study of such phenomena forms the basis of environmental biochemistry. his activities and his region. particularly in the aquatic and soil environments.e. economic philosophy. developed or developing. France. The past three decades have witnessed a growing awareness of the affects of human activity upon our earth’s resources and during this period environmental study has emerged as a multi-disciplinary field of study to examine the interaction of the people and their environments. economic policies. the resources have become concentrated in some specific regions only. viable discipline. As the distribution of natural resources. they largely determine the nature of these species. industrial production. 3. 1. It may be defined as the study of the sources. Availability of resources and the technology to exploit them plays most significant role in economic development or economic environment of a region.are major internal and external factors which make up the total economic environment. soil. Environmental Science and Biology: The ultimate environmental concern is that of life itself. population. due to geographical factor is uneven.
settlements. Sometimes it becomes
. Every human activity necessary for economic development affects the local. However. The main disadvantage of it being its impact on the physical environment. the extraction of various energy and other resources etc. the extinction of rare species of flaura and fauna. rita cyclones in USA. Cultural environment have their tools in the natural environment and in the cultural level of the different human groups. a stable economic environment does not always help the mankind. cultural environment also should differ from place to place. Cultural Environment: It is the manmade environment or manmade landscape. as more resources are needed to feed more mouths. epidemics such catrina. 4. Cultural environment is only human adaptation and adjustment to natural or physical environment. regional or global environment. In other words. plantation etc. heavy rainfalls. All manmade features such as buildings. The East Germany with her poor economic environment was left with no other alternative other than merging with West Germany which had strong and stable economic environment. are called cultural features. As the natural environment differs place to place. In the present situation. earthquakes in Jammu and Kashmir. floods etc. This requires more exploitation of resources which not only hampers the resource reserves but also affects the eco-system of that region. hence human activities and achievements depend not only upon natural environment also upon manmade environment. Both East Germany and West Germany serve as best example of interdependence of political and economic environment. We may call this cultural environment as a social environment or socio-cultural environment or even social heritage. the agricultural development. which contribute to economic environment of the region. the global warming. As per the passage of time man has acquired technical and scientific knowledge. are some of the main factors responsible for deteriorating the quality of the physical environment. It may also be called as humanized landscape. are some of the major environmental problems the world is facing on various levels today. The effects may be of short term or long term in nature. the problems like depletion of forests. his occupation and utilization of the physical resources for his own benefit. man as per his knowledge and capacity super-imposes culture on nature. It goes on piling one after another. it means it has its roots in nature. The industrialization.6
A population factor has its own say as regards economic environment of a region. Through this powerful tool he is changing fast the physical environment into cultural landscape. and grows in size and importance. The cultural environment is the imprint of man’s activities. roads. Culture develops on nature. It could be said as both economic and political are interdependent on each other.
negligent. Ecological disorder is the direct result of human action. 5. there will be addition of another 3. Majority of the population being poor causes more environmental damage due to mutually reinforcing effect between poverty and environmental damage. This rapid growth will affect both economic and physical environments at regional as well as global level.7 difficult to trace back the link with the physical base. implements whatever is decided by legislature and the executive. which is growing at the rate of 1. monarchy etc. The executives also called as government. A stable and dynamic political environment is a must for the development of mankind. If this trend continues. It has its impact on natural environment also. Even the government will not be in a position to keep up with the infrastructural and human need of the growing population. The type of government plays a significant role in political environment of a country as it is guided by certain firm policies of its own.7 per cent per year. The various ecosystems are showing signs of progressive deterioration because of man’s hasty. Cultural environment is simple and more directly connected with physical base in the early stages. Traditional land and resources will be subjected to more and more overuse. Environment and political set up: Political environment refers to the influence exerted by the three main political institutions viz. but becomes more complex and indirect as the human society grows up in knowledge and size. function in public interest and within the boundaries of the constitution. unplanned actions which ultimately leads to environmental degradation. direct. Any change in the form may be counter-productive and may affect the nation from
. At this stage the natural environment quality starts degrading and the question of ecological disorders and natural imbalance crops up. partly through his numbers and partly through his skills. legislature. As an example we have changes in many villages in India. more in the industrial and urban than rural. executive and judiciary. The world population. Environmental degradation is greater in advanced rather than in primitive societies. develop and control many of the human activities including his business antipollution laws. It helps to shape. dictatorial. The poor being both the victim and the agent of environmental damage. The type or the form government may be democratic.7 billion (1 billion = 1000 million) or more to the present population level in another three to four decades. Population and Environment: Population factors play a most momentous role in socio-economic environment of a country. agricultural or pastoral interiors. communist. is highly alarming. specially the size or density of the population. All actions of men are not wise or far-sighted and hence it leads to environmental crises.
not only that but one cannot think of human
. physical etc. if not more due to environmental problems. The problems are both global and national and all these pose serious challenges not only to our planet but also to our way of life. irreversible process would have been set in that would ultimately lead to human suffering not in the countries of South but also the North. It is believed by the scientists and the leaders in industry that if we do not come to grip with environmental issues. And same is true for public leaders whose sensitization is vital in this regard. More and more business executives have now identified environment as issue that affect their companies. It unfolds environmental issues for those who are directly or indirectly concerned with this discipline. Industry has significant role in environmental protection. The disturbing factors pressurize sustainability and natural living. Similarly environmental concern has to a part of policy for the various governmental organizations. land. socio-cultural. we have been witnessing significant environmental degradation during the last few decades. business. soil erosion. nature of disturbing factors and the various methods to overcome disturbing factors. Increasing industrialization. (use of fertilizers and pesticides) deforestation. water. The subject is multidisciplinary in nature. then problem would be too acute to be manageable.8 several angles i. high-intensity agriculture. Most of the environmental problems are well known though we may not have found solution for all. economic. The corporate leaders. Thus environmental concerns have to be on the agenda of all organizations. Those who are not economically well off are equally affected. SCOPE: A study of environmental science is getting lot of attention not only in the field of pollution control but also to sustain the life and nature. urbanization.air. our ecosystem. as all these segments are interdependent. biomedical waste treatment and fly ash management. If the desire to lead higher living standard also increases. The scope of environmental science and its management has increased from manufacturing pollution control equipment. Human beings are not separate entity. sewage and effluent treatment plants. transportation and population growth are the major environmental problems and these are likely to increase. In India. the students of universities and colleges and the student-managers realize that environmental protection and resource conservation have to be considered as a normal part of conducting business and understanding nature. It helps us to understand the nature of environment and its components. Issues of environmental protection and “Right for Clean Environment” have already trickled down from educated and affluent people to the general public.e. They are part of the surrounding.
marketing and management of landfills for wasters. legislation and regulatory controls but has to go a step beyond. Earth’s limited resources must be conserved and. educate people. we have to make all the persons environmentally educated. Since the environment provides all the resources that are used in the process of production of goods or services. air quality. rate of consumption and disposal of waste have created problems for manufacturing.9 survival if the services provided by the environment don’t become available. If the habit is degraded/damaged. Furthermore. if you plan for 10 years.their conservation and management Ecology and biodiversity Environmental pollution and control Social issues in relation to development and environment Human population and environment
IMPORTANCE: There is a proverb “If you plan for one year. plant rice. reused. Most environmental scientists agree that if pollution and other environmental deterrents continue at their present rates. the responsibility of industry is of paramount consideration. and perhaps drastic. In short scope of environmental studies is broad based and it encompasses a large number of areas and aspects. our living style. plant trees and if you plan for 100 years. The
. Without a suitable habitat neither animals nor plants nor human can survive. quality standards. where possible. broadly listed below: • • • • • Natural Resources. Besides the issue of resources. the result will be irreversible damage to the ecological cycles and balances in nature upon which all life depends.” If we wish to manage our planet earth. the later have to be conserved and the use of former to be judicious. Environmental scientists warn that fundamental. Industry not only has to consider issues like profit. changes in human behaviour will be required to avert an ecological crisis. clean and healthy for man and natural ecosystem. humans must learn that Earth does not have infinite resources. Our natural resources are either renewable or non-renewable. To safeguard the healthful environment that is essential to life. Natural ecosystem includes both physical and natural science. water table and many other environmental problems. life would be adversely affected. The study of environmental science makes us understand the scientific basis for establishing a standard which can be considered acceptably safe. humans must devise new strategies that mesh environmental progress with economic growth.
. we need change at local. The most important questions that bother every developing country is what should be the ideal combination of pattern of growth and development. international and natural environment. Internal Environment includes people. It is an exploratory description of issues. External environment include political. On the other hand. Each issue can be probed more deeply. It concerns itself with life support system and is very closely related with development and economic growth. yes Developed countries? This is a bear fact that both the consumption and life-style of people have direct relations to environmental problems. Therefore. social. damage. We have to choose between environment and development. Developing countries want accelerated growth to fulfill their basic needs and real question is should they follow footsteps are their big brothers. industrialized and underdeveloped or developing countries.10 future growth of developing nations depends upon the development of sustainable conservation methods that protect the environment while also meeting the basic needs of citizens. living habits and attitudinal and ethical questions have now cropped up which are main concerns for Environmental Studies. economic. It has been the reality that the industrial countries have high level of development and decent standard of living at the expense of environment and depletion of natural resources. Both. culture. work ethics and attitudes. Many a time both development and economic growth are not easily reconciled. legal. national. For the above. The real question is how long is the Mother Earth likely suffer and how long this kind of development will be sustainable? Developing countries on the other hand are still struggling to achieve a minimum standard of living though they are also equally contributing to environmental damage. regional and global levels together with an economic and social transformation at the levels of individuals and communities. An environmental study is the subject in which we examine important issues relating to environment as they affect our lives. technological. deplete and pollute the environment. These issues are controversial and need deep study to help us understand the environmental problems. Environmental studies is very important but most neglected body of knowledge. which Model of development as well as of business should be followed so that we do not ignore the principle that underlie sustainability. External and Internal Environment. Business Environment is divided into two categories viz. This subject forms part of Business Environment.
Some of these are: a) global warming b) population problems c) depletion of ozone layer d) habitat destruction and species extinction e) energy production f) groundwater depletion and contamination NEED FOR AWARENESS: Everybody should know what is happening around them. Today everybody talks of environment. Nobody can escape the wrath if fallen. is undertaken on large scale. (Example of stir on the issue of Enron Power Project (Dabhol Power Project) now called Ratnagiri Power Project in Konkan area of Maharashtra was much politicized and the environmental issues were put forth as political propaganda. but only a few have clear ideas about what needs to be done and still fewer have the actual experience or expertise in the field. There are several environmental problems which have been solved by using environmental studies.Ministry of Environment and Forest has also launched many campaigns like displaying several hoardings. may it be the people of developing countries or these from the developed ones. the judiciary and now the corporate sector also expresses a great concern on matters relating natural environment and ecosystem. the effect of which is directly felt by its inhabitants. Plantation of several trees on various occasions. especially on World Environment Day which falls on 5th June of every year.11 The government and their agencies. so that they could start understanding the problems that they are facing at present and would have to face in future. Looking at the present pathetic state of environment and the knowledge people have about it. Newspapers and other magazines are publishing out of lot of articles on this subject. are being made to be telecasted on the video media. feature films etc. throughout the country. Awareness regarding the state of environment is must for every human being living on this planet. Unfortunately. Several means are being employed to educate the masses. Government with its separate ministry. the non-governmental organizations. Already world is surrounded by several environmental problems. documentaries. it has become evident for every country to educate their masses. Various advertisements. almost all nations of world have geared up in creating awareness in their people. posters etc. There is always a need to have
. environmental awareness campaign have very often exploited for political propaganda rather than being an integral part of our educational programmes in theory and practice. In fact. The media is playing a leading role in this process. The state ministries are also playing important roles in generating awareness in masses.
12 awareness of the issues and knowledge as to how the environmental ailments are to be avoided and balance is struck between growth and environment. To sum up: Today everybody talks of environment, but only a few have clear ideas about what needs to be done and still fewer have the actual experience or expertise in the field. Unfortunately, environmental awareness campaigns have very often been exploited for political propaganda rather than being an integral part of our educational programmes in theory and practice. “Environment” is very wrongly taken as a “fashion” by all walks of life, hardly realizing that it is our “real-lifesituation” and our sustenance and security are at stake. “What is the use of a beautiful house if you don’t have a decent planet to put it on?” Even if we begin today, the restoration is expected in the next 40-50 years. The complex link between human activities and the loss of biodiversity is rapidly coming to light. Loss of habitats and poaching of wildlife is more obvious now a days. But more complex and unsuspected links are being thrown up as scientists go deeper into the subject. The recent rapid decline of species of vultures in South Asia could be result of a veterinary drug give to cattle which is eventually passed on to vultures when they feed one of the carcasses of these animals. The study therefore requires number of disciplines to establish this relationship. Similarly, while atmospheric science and chemistry may seem distantly related subjects, it was the study of CFCs and their impact on ozone that finally led to an understanding of the ozone ‘hole’ and the Montreal Protocol (a commitment by governments to phase out the use of CFCs), which has been one of the success stories of a global response to a global problem. Questions: Q.1: What is the need for studying environment issues? Q.2: What is the scope of environmental education? Q.3: How would environmental awareness help to protect our environment?
13 Unit 2: NATURAL RESOURCES Topics: a) Renewable and non-renewable resources: Forest resources, Use and over-exploitation, deforestation, case studies. Timber extraction, mining, dams and their efforts on forests and tribal people b) Water resources: Use and overutilization of surface and ground water, floods, drought, conflicts over water, dams-benefits and problems c) Mineral resources: Use and exploitation, environmental effects of extracting and using mineral resources’, case studies d) Food resources: World foods problems, changes caused by agriculture and overgrazing, effects of modern agriculture, fertilizer – pesticide problems, Water logging, salinity, case studies e) Energy resources: growing energy needs, renewable and renewable energy resources, use of alternate energy sources f) Land resources: land as a resource, land degradation, man induced landslides, desertification. Role of an individual in conservation of natural resources. Equitable use of resources for sustainable lifestyles. Objectives: • • • • • • To understand the concept of natural resources To distinguish between renewable and non-renewable resources To know the important natural resources such as Forest, Water, Minerals, food, energy and land resourcesTo study the resources in context of their usage, over utilization issues, factors responsible, environmental effects and remedial measures To ascertain role of an individual in conservation of natural resources To learn the equitable use of the resources for sustainable lifestyles
NATURAL RESOURCES INTRODUCTION: Resources does not refer to a thing or a substance but to a function which a thing or substance may perform or to an operation in which it may take part namely the function or operation of attaining a given end such as satisfying a want. Resource, therefore, means to attain given ends. The aspect of satisfaction is so important that we consider a thing or substance resource so long it meets our needs.
14 Life on this planet depends upon a large number of things and services provided by the nature, which are known as Natural Resources. Thus water, air, soil, minerals, coal, forests, crops and wild life are all examples of natural resources. Any material which is required or used to sustain life or livelihood is termed as a resource. In other words, resources are all these requirements of organisms, population and communities which tend to help in accumulation of energy by their increased availability. Some examples of resources are air for breathing, water for drinking, land for living and growing food, forests for timber and paper, ores for aluminium, copper, iron and other metals and coal, oil and natural gas for producing energy. Natural Resources: A natural resource is defined as a form of energy and/or matter which is essential for the functioning of organisms, populations and ecosystems. In the case of humans, a natural resource, in his words, refers to any form of energy or matter essential for the fulfillment of physiological, socio-economic and cultural needs, both at the individual level and that of the community. Life on our planet earth depends upon a large number of things and services provided by the nature, which are known as natural resources. Water, air, soil, minerals, coal, forests, crops and wild life are all the examples of natural resources. The basic ecological variables- energy, space, time and diversity are sometimes combined called natural resources. These natural are maintaining ecological balance among themselves. Man is the only organisms who have disrupted this duplicate balance. According to Ramade (1984), a natural resource is defined as a form of energy and/or matter, which is essential for the functioning of organisms, populations and ecosystems. In the case of humans, a natural resource, in his words, refers to any form of energy or matter essential for the fulfillment of physiological, socioeconomic and cultural needs, both at the individual level and that of the community. The basic ecological variables- energy, space, time and diversity are sometimes combined called natural resources. These natural resources are maintaining ecological balance among themselves. Man is the only organism who has disrupted this duplicate balance. Classification of natural resources: According to Odum (1971), natural resources can be divided into two categories such as (1) renewable and (2) Non renewable resources.
is considered as a renewable resource in as much as solar stocks are inexhaustible on the human scale. petrol. metals (iron. water and soil are also classified as renewable resources. ores of aluminium. nitrates etc. viz.15
1. Non-renewable resources can further be divided into two categories. which cannot be increased. These resources are able to increase their abundance through reproduction and utilization of simple substances. minerals etc. land. These are mainly the non-energy mineral resources. pulp products. and animals who are being replaced from time to time because they have the power of reproducing and maintain life cycles.).
. agriculture.). cotton.) and deposits of fertilizer nutrients (e. phosphates. copper. silver.) b) Non-recyclable: These are non-renewable resources. Some authors prefer to classify resources into biotic and abiotic resources: a) Biotic resources: These are living resources (e. Non-Renewable Resources: The resources that cannot be replenished through natural processes are known as non-renewable resources. which occur in the earth’s crust (e.g. b) Abiotic resources: These are non-living resources (e. mica etc.g. it is gone forever. These are available in limited amounts. zinc etc. animal wool. (crops and forests). jute. Then we have to find a substitute for it or do without it. which can be collected after they are used and can be recycled. as a special case. Solar energy although having a finite life. silk and synthetic fibers) and leather. which provide 90 per cent of our energy requirements. which cannot be recycled in any way. natural rubber. gold. coal etc. In addition to these resources.g. lead. Renewable resources: The resources that can be replenished through rapid natural cycles are known as renewable resource.g. Some examples of renewable resources though they do not have life cycle but can be recycled are wood and wood-products. phosphate sock and potassium and minerals used in their natural state (asbestos. minerals and salts (carbonates.g. Once a nonrenewable resource is consumed.). copper. 2. Examples of these are fossil fuels and uranium. forest. a) recycle able and b) non-recyclable a) Recycleale: These are non-renewable resources. clay.) that are not able to replace themselves or do so at such a slow rate that they are not useful to consider them in terms of the human life times. fibers (e. Examples of renewable resources are plants. These resources include fossil fuels (petrol. mercury etc. fish and wild life) that are able to reproduce or replace them and to increase.
Mineral resources 4. we should use the resources in such a way that we always save enough of them for our future generations. For example if a species is exploited so much that its population size declines below the threshold level then it is not able to sustain itself and gradually the species becomes endangered or extinct. But if not maintained properly. Energy resources 6.16 Natural resources can be classified as a) inexhaustible and b) exhaustible resources.g. power from tides etc. Following are some examples of the major natural resources: 1. they become extinct. ground water is renewable only if water continues to percolate in the soil at a rate at which it is removed. For example. It is very important to protect and conserve our natural resources and use them in a judicious manner so that we don’t exhaust them. Examples of Renewable and Non-renewable resources: Even our renewable resources can become non-renewable if we exploit them to such extent that their rate of consumption exceeds their rate of regeneration. wind power. Land resources 1. covering a large area of land. 1. Covering the earth like a green blanket these forests not only produce innumerable material goods. Most of the renewable resources are classified as inexhaustible. Food resources 5. they come under non-renewable category. but also provide several environmental services which are essential for life. petrol and some minerals etc. Exhaustible resources: These resources are limited in nature and they are non-maintainable e. It does not mean that we should stop using most of the natural resources. Hence. atomic energy. Forests are one of the most natural resources on this earth. Rather. FOREST RESOURCES: Forest Resources: It is a dense growth of trees. Water resources 3.
. Examples are solar energy. 2. Inexhaustible resources: The resources which are not changed or exhausted by man’s activities and are abundantly available for ever are said to be inexhaustible. Forest resources 2. coal. together with other plants.
drugs and many more items. fibers. The ecological services provided by our forests may be summed up as follows: 1. medicine. Production of oxygen: The trees produce oxygen by photosynthesis which is so vital for life on this earth. Wild life habitat: Forests are the homes of millions of wild animals and plants. the total of which is estimated to be more than $ 300 billion per year. firewood. Thus forest canopy acts as a sink for CO2 thereby reducing the problem of global warming caused by greenhouse gas i. rubber. Soil Conservation: Forests bind the soil particles tightly in their roots and prevent soil erosion. Many forest lands are used for mining. 3. resins. Regulation of hydrological cycle: Forested watersheds act like giant sponges. 6. They are rightly called as earth’s lungs. The greatest loss occurred in tropical Asia where one third of the forests resources have been destroyed.
About 1/3rd of the world’s land area is forested which includes closed as well as open forests. non-edible oils. But it is a matter of concern that almost everywhere the cover of the natural forests has declined over the years. lac. Half of the timber cut each year is used as fuel for heating and cooking. About 50-80% of the moisture in the air above tropical forests comes from their transpiration which helps in bringing rains. 2. food items. absorbing the rainfall. Pollution moderators: Forests can absorb many toxic gases and can help in keeping the air pure and clean. agriculture. grazing. particle board and chipboard. pulpwood. Former USSR accounts for about a 5th of the world’s forests. 5. 4. gum. plywood and hardwood. About 7 million species are found in the tropical forests alone. CO2. Brazil for about a 7th and Canada and USA each for 6-7%. bamboo canes. They also act as windbreaks. One third of the wood harvest is used for building materials as lumber. and recreation and for development of dams. Reducing global warming: The main greenhouse gas carbon dioxide (CO2) is absorbed by the forests as a raw material for photosynthesis. slowing down the runoff and slowly releasing the water for recharge of springs. Ecological uses: While a typical tree produces commercial goods worth about $ 590 it provides environmental services worth nearly $ 196 to $ 250. One sixth of the wood harvest is converted into pulp and used for paper industry. fodder. USES OF FORESTS: Commercial Uses: Forests provide us a large number of commercial goods which include timber. They have also been reported to absorb noise and thus help in preventing air and noise pollution.e.
furniture. plywood. have exerted
. expansion of urban.27% of our land area (63. shooted up resulting in large scale logging. Excessive use of fuel wood and charcoal. DEFORESTATION: The total forest area of the world in 1990 was estimated to be 7000 million hectares which was reduced to 2890 million hectares in 1975 and fell down to just 2300 million hectares by 2000. Fuel requirements: Increasing demands for fuel wood by the growing population in India alone has shooted up to 300-500 million tons in 2001 as compared to just 65 million tons during independence. despite the fact that we have a huge population size and very low per capita forest area (0.04% decline annually between 1982-90. medicine. which contribute to nearly half of the forest clearing annually.38m ha) covered by forests based on satellite data (MoFF. Major causes of Deforestation: 1. thereby increasing the pressure on forests. Bihar and M. mining. FAO (1983) estimated that about 1. In India.18 OVER EXPLOITATION OF FORESTS: Since time immemorial. wood and fuel. agricultural and industrial areas and overgrazing have together led to over exploitation of our forests leading to their rapid degradation. match boxes. With growing civilization the demands for raw material like timber. fuel wood etc. As per FAO estimates. the deforestation rate per unit population in India is the lowest among the major tropical countries.P. we are still far behind the target of achieving 33% forest areas.44 m hectares of land were brought under afforestation during this period leading to stabilization. humans have depended heavily on forests for food. However. but it is very alarming in tropical countries where it is as high as 40-50 percent and at the present rate is it estimated that in the next 60 years we would lose more than 90 percent of our tropical forests. The forested area in India seems to have stabilized since 1982 with about 0. we have this practice of North-East and to some extent in Andhra Pradesh.075 ha per capita). 1998). The international timber trade alone is worth over US $ 40 billion per year. Our forests contribute substantially to the national economy. railwaysleepers. 3. Deforestation rate is relatively less in temperate countries. Raw materials for industrial use: Wood for making boxes. shelter.Shifting cultivation: There are an estimated 300 million people living as shifting cultivators who practice slash and burn agriculture and are supported so clear more than 5 lakh ha of forests for shifting cultivation annually. as we are still having only 19. pulp. minerals. road-building and clearing of forests. 2. pulp for paper industry etc. as per our National Forest Policy.
The forested area has declined at an average rate of 33% and the increase in
. In hilly areas it often leads to landslides. Mining: Mining operations for extracting minerals and fossil fuels like coal often involves vast forest areas. Overgrazing: The poor in the tropics mainly rely on wood as a source of fuel leading to loss of tree cover and the cleared lands are turned into the grazing lands. Major activities in Forests: Timber Extraction: Logging for valuable timber. Plywood is in great demand for packing tea for Tea industry of Assam while fir tree wood is exploited greatly for packing apples in J & K. Large scale deforestation has been reported in Mussorie and Dehradun valley due to indiscriminating mining of various minerals over a length of about 40 Km. 3. 6. Hydrological cycle gets affected. Growing food needs: In developing countries this is the main reason for deforestation. Biodiversity is lost and along with that genetic diversity is eroded. Also road construction for making approach to the trees causes further damage to the forests. agricultural lands and settlements are created permanently by clearing forests. Overgrazing by the cattle leads to further degradation of these lands. 5. mining etc. 5. which may be detailed as below: 1. Problems of soil erosion and loss of soil fertility increase. Major consequences of deforestation: Deforestation has far reaching consequences. Mining and its associated activities require removal of vegetation along with underlying soil mantle and overlying rock masses. This results in defacing the topography and destruction of the landscape in the area. Mining from shallow deposits is done by surface mining while that from deep deposits is done by sub-surface mining.19 tremendous pressure on forests. More than 80000 ha of land of the country is presently under the stress of mining activities. road construction. such as teak and Mahogany not only involves a few large trees per hectare but about a dozen more trees since they are strongly interlocked with each other a by vines etc. 4. 2. big dams. To meet the demands of rapidly growing population. It threatens the existence of many wild life species due to destruction of their natural habitat. thereby influencing rainfall. 4. Development projects: Massive destruction of forests occur for various development projects like hydroelectric projects.
Tamilnadu and Karnataka are posing similar threats of deforestation. droughts and landslides become more prevalent in such areas. Almora. joined by Arundhati Ray and Baba Amte. Mining of radioactive minerals in Kerala. followed by Gujarat (more than 250) and Madhya Pradesh (130). The cause of Sardar Sarovar Dam related issues have been taken up by the environmental activitist Medha Patkar. Big dams have been in sharp focus of various environmental groups all over the world which is mainly because of several ecological problems including deforestation and socio-economic problems related to tribal or native people associated with them. India has more than 1550 large dams. large scale devastation of forests takes place which breaks the natural ecological balance of the region. However. these dams are also responsible for the destruction of vast areas of forests. Forests are the repositories of invaluable gifts of nature in the form of biodiversity and by destroying them (particularly. DAMS AND THEIR EFFECTS ON FORESTS AND PEOPLE: Big dams and rivers valley projects have multi-purpose uses and Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru used to refer to these dams and valley projects as “Temples of modern India”. on river Bhagirathi in Uttaranchal and the largest in terms of capacity is Bhakra dam on river Satluj in Himachal Pradesh. Floods. bauxite and magnetite. Raniganj and Singrauli areas has caused extensive deforestation in Jharkhand. Coal mining in Jharia.20 non-forest area due to mining activities has resulted in relatively unstable zones leading to landslides. For building big dams. Mining of magnesite and soap – stones have destroyed 14 ha of forest in hill slopes of Khirakot. chromite. The rich forests of Western Ghats are also facing the same threat due to mining projects for excavation of copper. the leader of Chipko Movement.Sunder lal Bahaguna. the tropical rain forests) we are going to
. Indiscriminate mining in forests of Goa since 1961 has destroyed more than 50000 ha of forest land. Kosi valley. The crusade against the ecological damage and deforestation caused due to Tehri dam was led by Shri. the maximum being in the state of Maharashtra (more than 600). The highest one is Tehri dam. The Silent valley hydroelectric project was one of the first such projects situated in the tropical rain forest area of Western Ghats which attracted much concern of the people..
Water is characterized by certain unique features which make it a marvelous resource: • • • • It exists as a liquid over a wide range of temperature i. It has the highest specific heat. Hence.21 lose these species even before knowing them. which are essential for life. can sustain aquatic organisms even in extreme cold. from 0 to 100 C. including oxygen.e. which subsequently return
. Being lighter the ice keeps floating. But it can also easily dissolve various pollutants and become a carrier of pathogenic microorganisms. it takes huge amount energy for getting vaporized. as it freezes. it can serve as a very good carrier of nutrients. Every year about 1. The water from various moist surfaces evaporates and fall again on the earth in the form of rain or snow and passes through living organisms and ultimately returns to oceans. whereas the bottom waters remain at a higher temperature and therefore.e. That’s why it produces a cooling effect as it evaporates. Solar energy drives the water cycle by evaporating it from various bodies.4 inch thick layer of water evaporates from the oceans more than 90% of which returns to the oceans through the hydrological cycle. Thus. It is in an excellent solvent for several nutrients. About 97% of the earth’s surface is covered by water and most of the animals and plants have 60-65% water in their body. Due to high surface tension and cohesion it can only easily rise through great heights through the trunk even in the tallest of the trees like Sequoia. It has anamolous expansion behaviour i. Case study includes Sardar Sarovar Dam (Uprooted forests and tribals) is the most current issue on the dams and their effects on forests and people. These species could be having marvelous economic or medicinal value and deforestation results in loss of this storehouse of species which have evolved over millions of years in a single stroke. it expands instead of contracting and thus becomes lighter. We have enormous resources of water on earth amounting to 1404 million km³. which we call as Hydrological Cycle. It is because of this property that even in extreme cold. It has high latent heat of vaporization. due to which it warms up and cools down very slowly without causing shocks of temperature jerks to the aquatic life. the lakes freeze only on the surface.
The water we use keeps on cycling endlessly through the environment. WATER RESOURCES: Water is an indispensable natural resource on this earth on which all life depends.
Groundwater: About 9.
. Most of the civilizations have grown and flourished on the banks of rivers. Overuse of groundwater for drinking. irrigation and domestic purposes has resulted in rapid depletion of groundwater in various regions leading to lowering of water table and drying of wells. Water withdrawal: taking water from groundwater or surface water resource and 2. about 97% is salty water (marine) and only 3% is fresh water. Water: A precious Natural Resource: Although water is very abundant on this earth. Global distribution of water resources is quite uneven depending upon several geographic factors. Pollution of many of the groundwater aquifers has made of these wells unfit for consumption. Water is absolutely essential for life. Tropical rain forest areas receive maximum rainfall while the major world deserts occur in zones of dry. Rivers and streams have long been used for discharging the wastes. regulation of temperature.22 through rainfall or snow. Out of the total water reserves of the world. descending air (20-40 N and S) and receive very little rainfall.003% is readily available to us in the form of groundwater and surface water. Even this small fraction of fresh water is not available to us most of it is locked up in polar ice caps and just 0. growth in turn has been responsible for pollution of the rivers. Water use by humans is of two types: 1. their distribution in the body. yet it is very precious. Plants too play a very vital role by absorbing the groundwater from the soil and releasing it into the atmosphere by process of transpiration.86% of the total fresh water resources is in the form of groundwater and it is about 35-50 times that of surface water supplies. WATER USE AND OVER-EXPLOITATION: Due to its unique properties water is of multiple uses for all living organisms. and removal of wastes are all mediated through water. Water consumption: the water which is taken up but not returned for reuse. but unfortunately. Most of the life processes take place in water in water contained in the body. Uptake of nutrients.
The problems arising out of water resources are floods. In traditional water management. Rajasthan as well as Delhi. The surface water is largely used for irrigation.BENEFITS AND PROBLEMS Benefits: River valley projects with big dams have usually been considered a key role in the development process due to their multiple uses. which are democratically implemented.a) Water conflict in the Middle East. b) The Indus Water treaty-is dispute between India and Pakistan. While water disputes between states and nations often resume battle like situations. provide drinking water in remote areas and bring out overall development of the region. BIG DAMS. Such projects result providing much employment of opportunities. It can check floods and famines. Karnataka similarly The Satluj-Yamuna link canal Dispute also involves two Northern states viz. Such projects have tremendous potential for economic upliftment and growth. lakes. Some major water conflicts are. snow) when does not percolate down into the ground or does not return to the atmosphere as evaporation or transpiration loss. Kuwait. The ‘gram sabhas” approve these plans publicly. wetlands or artificial reservoirs known as surface water. Issues related to sharing of river water have been largely affecting our farmers and also shaking our governments. provide irrigation water to lower areas. Punjab and Haryana.it also affects countries who are water starved viz. Israel and Jordan. Indispensability of water and its unequal distribution has often led to inter-state or international disputes. There are hopes all over from every corner of the region where such dam is planned to be constructed. These dams are often regarded as a symbol of national development. industrial use. India has the distinction of having the largest number of river valley projects. Saudi Arabia. A country’s economy is largely dependent upon its rivers. public water supply.involves two major southern states of India viz.countries involved as Sudan. Egypt. Turkey.Water logging Surface water: The water coming through precipitation (rainfall.23 Effects of groundwater usage: 1.
. assumes the form of streams. generate electricity and reduce water and power shortage. Tamilnadu. navigation etc. innovative arrangements ensure equitable distribution of water. raise in the standard of living and improvement in quality of life.Lowering of water table 3.Susidence 2. Apart from these there are conflicts over water. ponds. c) The Cauvery water dispute. Affected states also include UP. droughts. Syria. our traditional water managers in villages prove to be quite effective.
most of the rocks. MINERAL RESOURCES: Minerals are naturally occurring. biotite etc.24 Environmental problems: The environmental impacts of big dams are also too many due to which very often big dams become an issue of controversy. iron etc. There are thousands of minerals occurring in different parts of the world. crystalline solids having definite chemical composition and characteristic physical properties. inorganic. but it has several serious side-effects. Upstream problems: • • • • • • • • • • Displacement of tribal people Loss of forests. These minerals in turn are composed of some elements like silicon. The impacts can be at the upstream as well as downstream levels. oxygen. However. feldspar.
. we see everyday are just composed of few common minerals like quartz. flora and fauna Changes in fisheries and the spawning grounds Siltation and sedimentation of reservoirs Loss of non-forest land Stagnation and water logging near reservoir Breeding of vectors and spread of vector-borne diseases Reservoir induced seismicity (RIS) causing earthquakes Growth of aquatic weeds Microclimatic changes
Downstream impacts: • • • • • • • Water logging and salinity due to over irrigation Micro-climatic changes Reduced water flow and silt deposition river Flash floods Salt water intrusion at river mouth Loss of land fertility along the river since the sediments carrying nutrients get deposited in the reservoir Outbreak of vector-borne diseases like malaria
Thus dams are built to serve the society with multiple uses. That it why now there is a shift towards construction of small dams or min-hydel projects.
medical system. World food problems: Every year food problem is killing as many people as were killed by the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima during World War II. occupational health hazards etc. equitably distribute it and also to control population growth. silver etc. potato. an estimated 300 million Indians are still undernourished. generation of energy. barley.25 Minerals are generally used for development of industrial plants. rice. air pollution. Although India is the third largest producer of staple crops.gold. restoration of mined areas by re-vegetating them with appropriate plant species. milk. FOOD RESOURCES: There are thousands of edible plants and animals over the world out of which only about three dozen types constitute major food of humans. Environmental impacts of mineral extraction and use are devegetation and defacing of landscape. Our food problems are directly related to population. Because of overgrazing the agricultural land gets affected as follows. This shows that there is drastic need to increase food production. jewellery. about twenty or so common fruits and vegetables. it results into: • • • Land degradation Soil erosion Loss of useful species
Agriculture also makes impact on the usage of land generally as follows: • • • Deforestation Soil Erosion Depletion of nutrients
Impact of modern agriculture is as follows: There is • Impact related to high yielding varieties (HYV)
. transportation means. microbial leaching technique. construction. stabilization of the mined lands. maize. fish and seafood. communication. subsidence of land. but it has nearly three times population to feed. Remedial measures include adoption of eco-friendly technology. groundwater contamination. India has only half as much land as USA. meat. gradual restoration of flora etc. surface water pollution. equipments and armament for defence. oats etc. The main food resources include wheat.
biofuels etc. Hydropower. nitrite pollution. the basic amenities of life. This will seek to end the energy crisis which the world is facing today. Soil is also a valuable resource. biological magnification. nuclear energy. solar cooker. Some other problems include water logging. Tidal energy. geothermal energy. solar power plants are must. solar furnace. solar energy. The oil producing have started twisting arms of the developed as well as developing countries by dictating the prices of oil and other petroleum products. Invention of steam engineers replaced the burning of wood by coal and coal was further replaced by oil.
. 2. Wind and hydropower has also been used. LAND RESOURCES: Land as a resource: Land is a finite and valuable resource upon which we depend for our food. salinity problems and such others. The very original form of energy technology probably was the fire. death of non-target organisms.made up equipments such has solar heat collectors. Energy resources are primarily divided into two categories viz. ocean thermal energy. fiber and fuel wood. eutrophication
Pestide related problems include creating resistance in pests and producing new pests. solar water heater. renewable and non-renewable sources. petroleum. solar cells. biomass. which are also termed as non-conventional energy sources which include: 1.26 • Fertilizers related problems include micronutrient imbalance. There are wide disparities in per capita energy use between developed and the developing nations. Renewable energy resources must be preferred over the non-renewable resources. The non renewable energy sources include coal. biogas. which produced heat and the early man used it for cooking and heating purposes. natural gas. It is inevitable truth that now there is an urgent need of thinking in terms of alternative sources of energy. ENERGY RESOURCES: Energy consumption of a nation is usually considered as an index of its development. This is because almost all the development activities are directly or indirectly dependent upon energy. Wind energy 3.
construction of roads and railway lines. especially surface-litter and top soil from one place to another. mineral and energy resources play a vital role in the development of a nation. Desertification is characterized by devegetation and loss of vegetal over. With our small
. soil. It basically of two types viz. biotic agents. salinization and severe soil erosion. depletion of groundwater. large dams. normal erosion go geologic erosion and accelerated erosion. are responsible for clearing of large forested areas. The agents that cause such erosion are. Hence there is more and more pressure on the limited land resources which are getting degraded due to over-exploitation. It results in the loss of fertility. Wind is also responsible for the land erosion through saltation. Contour farming Terracing Strip cropping Strip cropping Alley cropping Wind breaks or shelterbelts Water logging
Landslides: Various anthropogenic activities like hydroelectric projects. Soil Erosion: Soil erosion means wearing away of soil. In order to prevent soil erosion and conserve the soil the following conservation practices are employed: • • • • • • • • Conservational till farming.climatic agents and water induced erosion. Desertification: Desertification is a process whereby the productive potential of arid or semiarid lands falls by ten percent or more. CONSERVATION OF NATURAL RESOURCES: Role of an Individual Different natural resources like forests. water logging. mining etc. Soil erosion. reservoirs. It defined as the movement of soil components. suspension and surface creep. salinization and contamination of the soil with industrial wastes like fly-ash. construction of buildings. Causes of desertification: 1) Deforestation b) Overgrazing 3) Mining and quarrying. food. press mud or heavy metals all cause degradation of land.27
Land Degradation: Because of increasing of population growth the demands for arable land for producing food and fuel wood is also increasing. water.
2. Never water the plants in mid-day. Install water saving toilets that use not more than 6 liters per flush. Control the use of A. 2. 7. Conserve energy: 1. metals and papers. 6. Share a car-pool if possible. Following are the ways: Conserve Water: 1. In washing machines fill the machine only to the level required for your clothes. 3. driveways etc. Build your house with provision for sunspace which will keep your house warmer and will provide more light.28 individual efforts we can together help in conserving our natural resources to a large extent.C. Recycle and reuse glass. Drive less. Don’t keep water taps running while brushing. 5. Install a system to capture rain water. Check for water leaks in pipes and toilets and repair them promptly. 4. 4. Use bicycle or just walk down small distances instead of using vehicle. Water the plants and the lawns in the evening when evaporation losses are minimum. make fewer trips and use public transportations whenever possible. Reuse the soapy water of washing from clothes for gardening. shaving. Protect the Soil:
. Use solar cooker for cooking which will be more nutritious and will save your LPG expenses. washing or bathing. 3. 7. 8. Obtain as much heat as possible from natural sources. Dry the clothes in sun instead of direr if possible. 5. 6. Turn off lights fans and other appliances when not in use.
On the other hand LDCs have very low or moderate industrial growth and have 78% of world’s population. Do not waste food. Eat local and seasonal vegetables. 73% of energy and command 85% of income. Grow different types of ornamental plants. There is a huge gap between those two worlds. Reduce the use of pesticides. 4. haves and have-nots. 4. Promote Sustainable Agriculture: 1. Do not irrigate the plants using a strong flow of water as it would wash off the soil.
. There are two major causes of unsustainability.29 1. Grow grass in the open areas which will bind the soil and prevent its erosion. Over population in poor countries and 2. A global consensus has to be reached for balanced distribution. 6. 27% of energy and have only 15% of global income. Use drip irrigation. 1. 5. But this is observed that MDCs have only 22% of world’s population but they use 88% of natural resources. 3. Take as much as you can eat. Control pests.
EQUITABLE USE OF RESOURCES FOR SUSTAINABLE LIFE STYLE There is a big divide in the world viz. This is not sustainable growth. 3. Make compost from your kitchen waste and use it for your kitchen-garden. The rich have gone richer and the poor have stead even poorer. Fertilize your crop with organic fertilizers. in turn they contribute very big proportion to its pollution. 2. more developed countries (MDCs) and Less Developed countries (LDCs). herbs and trees in your garden. Better use sprinkling irrigation. North and South. The solution to this problem is to have more equitable distribution of resources and wealth. Over consumption of resources by rich countries. 2. They use only 12% of natural resources.
What is overgrazing? How does it contribute to environmental degradation? 12. Discuss the major use of forests. Discuss with the help of live example around you. 2. How would you justify that ecological uses of forests surpass commercial uses? 3. Should we build big dams? Give arguments in favour of your answer. What are the uses of various types of minerals? 10. How can you as an individual conserve different natural resources?
. how big dams have affected forests and the tribals. What are the major causes and consequences of deforestation? 4. Briefly discuss droughts and floods with respect to their occurrence and impacts. What are the major environmental impacts of mineral extraction? 11. Give brief account of non-renewable energy resources. Need of the hour is fairer sharing of resources between rich and poor which will bring about sustainable development for all. 8.
1. 13. What are the environmental impacts of ground water usage? 6. What is soil erosion? How can it be checked? 15. 5. 7.30
The rich countries will have to lower down their consumption levels and bare minimum needs of the poor must be satisfied by providing them resources. Discuss the merits and demerits of wind energy? 14. What are renewable and non-renewable resources? Give examples. 9. What are major causes for conflicts over water? Discuss one international and one interstate water conflict.
or communities under a particular set of habitat. Energy flow of the ecosystem. Introduction. Grassland ecosystem. To understand population fluctuations. Forest ecosystem. Streams. estuaries] Objectives: • • • • To understand the concept of Ecosystem To learn about the elements of an Ecosystem To distinguish between different types of ecosystems To understand the characteristics. Food chains. functions of the ecosystem
INTRODUCTION: It is essential to first grasp the fundamentals of ecology in order to understand the environment. For practical purposes. rivers. meaning house or place to live. land. Aquatic ecosystems [ponds. oceans. fresh water. For example. the greenhouse effect is a real danger. Ecological succession. Taken literally. ecology deals with how individuals are affected by and how they affect their environment. we can consider ecology as the study of organisms and their environment. types. consumers and decomposers. ecology refers to the study of organisms in their natural habitat. the changes happening to individuals making up the population are analyzed. it is study of the interrelations between living organisms and their environment. In other words. Community ecology deals with the composition or structure of communities. ecology deals with the presence or absence of particular species and with trends and fluctuations in their numbers. populations. The word ecology comes from Greek word Oikos. and air. Ecology proceeds at three levels: 1) the individual organism 2) the population (consisting of individuals of the same species) and 3) the community (consisting of number of populations). Communities are not constant but are continually changing because of
. At the level of the organism. lakes. structure and function of the following ecosystem. Desert ecosystem. characteristics features. and what are the implications for human life as the earth heats up further. and with the natural resources affected by them. At the level of population. Ecology is concerned with the study of organisms in various habitats viz. Producers. Ecologists try to predict what will happen to organisms. Ecology can also be defined as the study of the structure and function of nature.31 Unit 3: ECOSYSTEM Topics: Structure and function of an ecosystem. food webs and ecological pyramids.
from microscopic blue-green algae to massive banyan tree. Population: A population is a group of individuals of the same species occupying a given area at a given time. Living organism: An organism is any form of life. chemistry and genetic structure form a species. make a population. There are certain important concepts of ecology. For instance. Organisms of the same species can breed with one another and produce fertile offspring under natural conditions. Group of individual organisms of the same species living within an area is called population. Any assemblage of populations living in a prescribed area or physical habitat that has characteristics in addition to its individual and population components can be called as community. body systems and they all have similar genetic structure. Communities: Communities of various species occupying a particular area and interacting with each other make up a community. all human beings (Homo sapiens) resemble one another in their body structure. They are thus grouped together under the species sapiens. Thus community comprises several species interacting with each other. It includes all plants and animals. when we say ‘the community of the Gir National Park’. the grass population and populations of all kinds of life forms present there. we refer to the lion population. the Asiatic lions in the Gir National Park. Species: Group of organisms that resemble one another in appearance.
. A wide range and variety of organisms is present on the earth from the single celled amoeba to huge sharks. Gujarat. the cattle population. For instance. For example.32 interactions among the populations and because of disturbances caused by climatic and geological events as well as human activities. the deer population. behaviour.
like the soil. The term ecosystem was first proposed by A.Such interactions sustain the system and allow it to respond to changing conditions. biotic diversity and material cycles within the system” Michael Allaby (1983) defined ecosystem as a community of interdependent organisms together with the environment. The sum total of all the ecosystems on planet Earth is called the biosphere. and even the solar energy that is captured by the plants. Thus. chemical and physical interactions between themselves and with the non-living components.Tansley (1935) who defied ecosystem as follows: “Ecosystem is defined as a self-sustained community of plants and animals existing in its own environment. which includes all the earth’s living organisms interacting with the physical environment as a whole to maintain a steady-state ecosystem.G. the non-living components and their interactions. rocks. Food chain: The transfer of food energy from its source in plants through a series of organisms where eating and being eaten is repeated a number of times are called food chain.” Odum (1971) defined ecosystem as any unit that includes all the organisms in a given area interacting with the physical environment.33 The circulation of the chemical elements in its biosphere from the environment to organisms and back to the environment is called cycle. Ecosystem/s: An econsystem is a community of organisms involved in a dynamic network of biological. an ecosystem includes the community.
. The community of organisms and populations that are interacting with one another and with the chemical and physical components of their environment is called ‘ecosystem’. Carrying capacity: Maximum population of a particular species that a given habitat can support over a given period of time. so that a flow of energy give rise to a clearly defined tropic structure. The Gir ecosystem will thus include the various life forms found in the park (the community) and also the nonliving components of the park. water etc. .
Hence they consume plants and plant products produced by the autotrophs. grow in size. mature.e. They can also be termed as consumers. They depend on the environment for raw materials and utilize sun light for the production of their own food. forests. In absence of decomposers the earth will be packed only with dead bodies. Ecosystem Structure: A system is an arrangement of matter so related to form a whole (unit). The term ecosystem was first introduced in 1935. which then cascades and sometimes amplifies into other components because of relationships. Ecosystems are also always undergoing alterations to their biotic and abiotic components. Each ecosystem has two components i. grasslands. Eco means ecological sphere or region of space where living things can exist while system mean interacting organisms living in a particular habitat (living space). An ecosystem may be defined as a dynamic entity composed of a biological community and its associated abiotic environment. Some examples of natural ecosystems are ponds. lakes. because they do not have chlorophyll. These decomposers decompose the dead bodies. Biotic and Abiotic substances. Thus the system resulting from the integration of all the living and non-living factors is called ecosystem. Abiotic (NON-LIVING) Component:
. In short. The living organisms (biotic community) of an area and their non-living environment function together as one unit called ecological system or ecosystem. Biotic (LIVING) Component: It includes all living organisms of the environment. In the ecosystem. which is self sufficient and balanced.34 The term ecosystem is made up of two words: eco and system. deserts and so on. Some of these alterations begin first with a change in the state of one component of the ecosystem. the living organisms and its environment each influencing the properties of the other and both are necessary for the survival and maintenance of life. The biotic component can be divided into two major groups (basing on food preparation and dependent for food): a) Autotrophs (Producers): Self food producing organisms are known as autotrophs. Decomposers: These are most important group of organisms in the ecosystem. then after old age they die. hence called as producers and b) Heterotrophs (Consumers): These are the organisms mostly animals that cannot utilize sun light directly like autotrophs for their food preparation. The largest ecosystem of the earth is the biosphere. Often the dynamic interactions that occur within an ecosystem are numerous and complex. Plants and animals take birth. ecosystem can be described as “Life Support System”. oceans. reproduce.
soil.include tropical grasslands. Non-living Components are essential for the living world. With no sunlight.
. steams. polar grasslands. Forest ecosystem. tropical scrub forests. like air. water. temperate grasslands. temperate deserts. 4. Temperature. estuary.include pond ecosystem. temperate deciduous forests.include tropical deserts.. 3. lake ecosystem. temperate rain forests. 2.Sunlight. Nature of soil.a partially enclosed coastal area at the mouth of a river where fresh water and salty seawater meet. Aquatic ecosystem. Major ecosystem include 1.include tropical rain forests. oceans. cold deserts etc. Desert Ecosystems. Chemical factors: Percentage of water and air in soil. 2. What is food chain? Give examples and discuss their significance.35
Non living components of an ecosystem include all the physical and chemical factors that influence living organisms.
Questions: 1. life cannot exist. nutrients present in soil. evergreen coniferous forests. What are the biotic and abiotic components of an ecosystem? 3. Some examples are: physical factors include. rocks etc. Non-living components include all the physical and chemical factors of an ecosystem that affect the living organisms. Precipitation. water. Grassland ecosystems. air and minerals. tropical deciduous forests. Define ecology and ecosystems. oxygen dissolved in water. salinity of water. Fire and water currents.
Biodiversity refers to the variety and variability among all groups of living organisms and the ecosystem complexes in which they occur. Hot-spots of biodiversity.36
Unit 4 BIODIVERSITY
Topics: Introduction. social. species and ecosystem diversity. Biodiversity is at three levels Genetic Diversity. Biodiversity constitutes the biological wealth. Genetic Biodiversity: It is basic source of biodiversity. Species Diversity and Ecosystem Diversity. water and air. Definition: genetic. terrestrial. productive use. In the Conservation of Biological diversity (1992) biodiversity has been defined as the variability among living organisms from all sources including inter alia. ethical. India as a megadiversity nation. poaching of wildlife. Value of biodiversity. marine and other aquatic ecosystems and the ecological complexes of which they are a part. The genes found in organisms can form enormous number of combinations each of which gives rise to some variability. Biogeographically classification of India. Endangered and endemic species of India. consumptive use. man-wildlife conflicts. aesthetic and option values. it is only one part where life exists and the surprising variety of living organisms which could be about 50 million species are all restricted to just about a kilometer-thick layer of soil.
. Threats to biodiversity. Biodiversity means the variety and variability of all living organisms. habitat loss. Conservation of biodiversity: In-situ and Ex-situ conservation of biodiversity Objectives: • To learn the concept of Biodiversity • To understand various types of biodiversity • To ascertain the value and importance of biodiversity • To know the Indian context of Biodiversity • To absorb various threat perceptions to the biodiversity • To know the remedial measures for preserving the biodiversity Introduction: It is really amazing if we divide the whole mother earth into 10 billion parts. It is indeed wonderful to see that so much diversity has been created by nature on this earth from so little physical matter.
Diversity of genes within a species increases its ability to adapt to disease. genetic diversity gets diminished. We mainly consider diversity in forest ecosystem. Species Biodiversity: This is the variability found within the population of a species or between different species of a community. Species biodiversity means variety of species within a region. When a variety of a species is destroyed.5 million living and 300000 fossil species have been actually described and given scientific names. Till now only about 1. shape. aroma and nutrient content of the grain. altitude precipitation etc. a tropical deciduous forest.
. The ecosystems also show variations with respect to physical parameters like moisture. It represents broadly the species richness and their abundance in a community. but there are thousands of wild and cultivated varieties of rice which show variations at the genetic level and differ in their colour. This is genetic diversity of rice. the variations observed are just too many and they are mainly due to variations in the above mentioned physical factors. A species have varieties and each variety has its own genes or genetic make up. But. along these gradients. food-webs. nutrient cycling etc. temperature. For example. More species biodiversity means more biological wealth. size. a temperate deciduous forest and a boreal forest. pollution and other changes in environment.37 Genes are the basic units of hereditary information transmitted from one generation to other. When the genes within the same species show different versions due to new combinations. Such diversity can be measured on the basis of species in a region. while considering a tropical rainforest. Ecosystem Biodiversity: This is the diversity of ecological complexity showing variations in ecological niches. It is quite likely that a large fraction of these species may become extinct even before they are discovered and enlisted. which is supposed to have mainly a dominance of trees. it is called genetic variability. all rice varieties belong to the species Oryza sativa. Genetic biodiversity means the variation of genes within a species. Thus there occurs tremendous diversity within the ecosystems. tropic structure.
we come to know and do appreciate the value of organism only after it is lost from this earth. North-East India – Brahmaputra Valley. Western Ghat Mountains 6. Laskhadweep etc. Nicobar Islands. West. Coniferous trees of boreal forests cannot take up the function of the trees of tropical deciduous forest lands and vice versa. It very important to study the distribution. 10. Gujarat-Rajwara 5. India has a rich heritage of biological diversity and occupies the tenth position among the plant rich nations of the world. because ecosystem diversity has evolved with respect to the prevailing environmental conditions with well regulated ecological balance. Western Ghats – Malabar Coast. Gangetic Plain – Upper Ganetic Plain. wetlands. Sometimes. evolution. All these have their own fauna and flora (biodiversity). Central and East Himalayas 3. The multiple uses of biodiversity is classified as follows:
. Thar and Ladakh 4. Semi-Arid – Central India.38 The ecosystem diversity is of great value that must be kept intact. insignificant. deserts etc. dispersal and environmental relationship of plants and animals in time and space. There are ten different biogeographic habitats in India. Very small. This diversity has developed over millions of years of evolution. Deccan Peninsula – Deccan Plateau South. Eastern.West Coast and East Coast VALUE OF BIODIVERSITY Biodiversity in terms of its commercial utility. useless looking organism may play crucial role in the ecological balance of the ecosystem or may be a potential source of some invaluable drug for dreaded diseases like cancer or AIDS. social and aesthetic value has enormous importance. We are benefited by other organisms in innumerable ways. BIOGEOPORAHICAL CLASSIFICATION OF INDIA India has different types of climate and topography in different parts of the country and these variations have induced enormous variability in flora and fauna. Trans-Himalayan – Upper regions 2. We cannot replace the diversity of one ecosystem with that of another. Himalayan – North-West Himalayas. North Eastern Hills 9. Coasts. Chhota Nagpur 7. Islands – Andaman Islands. ecological service. Lower Gangetic Plain 8. Ecosystem biodiversity refers to variety of ecosystem in a particular region or zone as for example various ecosystems include forests. Desert – Kutch. it would disrupt the ecological balance. Central. 1. If we destroy this diversity. arid zones.
Quinine. silk from silk-worm. About 90% of present day food crops have been domesticated from wild tropical plants. all of which are traded in the market. A large number of wild animals are also our sources of food. Developing countries in Asia. ivory-works. hide. which possesses anticancer alkaloids. we get Tetracyclin from a bacterium. textile industry. while Digitalin is obtained from foxglove (Digitalis) which is an effective cure for heart ailments.g. smuggling of fur. Food: A large number of wild plants and shrubs are consumed by human beings as food. paper and pulp industry. drugs. food. Fuel: Our forests have been used since ages for fuel wood. but are directly consumed by tribals and local villagers. plywood industry. fir of many animals. Africa and Latin America are the richest biodiversity centers and wild life products are smuggled and marketed in large quantities to some rich western countries and also to China and Hong Kong where export of at skins and snake skins fetches a booming business. hence falls under constructive value. wool from sheep. Many industries are dependent upon productive use values of biodiversity e. Silk industry. These may include the animal products like tusks of elephants. Wild relatives usually possess better tolerance and hardiness. About 80000 edible plants species have been reported from wild. Despite international ban on trade in products from endangered species. Likewise. pearl industry etc. the cure for malaria is obtained from the bark of Cinchona tree. musk from musk deer. It may include lumber or wild gene resources that can be traded for use by scientists for introducing desirable traits in the crops and domesticated animals. lac from lac insects etc. Even now our agricultural scientists make us of the existing wild species of plants that are closely related to our crop plants for developing new hardy strains. horns. worth millions of dollars are being sold every year. Consumptive use value: These include direct use values where the biodiversity product can be harvested and consumed directly e. Railway sleeper industry. leather industry.
. Productive use values: These are the commercially usable values where the product is marketed and sold. two anticancer drugs. have been obtained from Periwinkle (Catharanthus) plant. fiber etc. A large number of marine animals are supposed to possess anti-cancer properties which are yet to be explored systematically. The wonder drug Penicillin used as an antibiotic is derived from a fungus called Penicillium. petroleum and natural gas are also products of fossilized biodiversity. 2.g. live specimen etc. Drugs and medicines: About 75% of the world’s population depends upon plants or plant extracts for medicines. Recently vinblastin and vincristine. fuel. The fossil fuels coal. Firewood collected by individuals are not normally marketed. tusks.39
Ecotourism is estimated to generate about 12 billion dollars of revenue annually that roughly gives the aesthetic value of biodiversity. Bael etc. songs. or a tropical rainforest. The “willingness to pay” concept on such ecotourism gives us even a monetary estimate for aesthetic value of biodiversity. The tribal people are very closely linked with the wild life in the forests. Ethical value: It is also sometimes known as existence value. because biodiversity is valuable. Aesthetic value: Great aesthetic value is attached to biodiversity. Thus option value is the knowing that there are biological resources existing on this biosphere that may on day prove to be an effective option for something important in the future. customs. Snake. dances and customs are closely woven around the wildlife. Peacock. but we all strongly feel that these species should exist in nature. The leaves. Owl etc. Social value: These are the values associated with the social life. We are not deriving anything direct from Kangaroo. Their social life. People from far and wide spend a lot of time and money to visit wilderness areas where they can enjoy the aesthetic value of biodiversity and this type of tourism is now known as eco-tourism. fruits or flowers of these plants are used in workship or the plant itself is worshipped. Thus biodiversity has distinct social value. the option value of biodiversity suggests that any species may prove to be a miracle species someday. The ethical value means that we may or may not use a species. Bull. Option value: These values include the potential of biodiversity that are presently unknown and need to be explored. The biodiversity is like
. Mango. Lotus. attached with different societies. If we want our human race to survive. then we must protect all biodiversity. This means. Thus. No one of us would like to visit vast stretches of barren lands with no signs of visible life. There is a possibility that we may have some potential cure for AIDS or cancer existing within the depths of a marine ecosystem. but knowing the very fact that this species exists in nature gives us pleasure. It involves ethical issues like “all life must be preserved”. Peepal. Many animals like Cow. It is based on the concept of “Live and Let Live”. Zebra or Giraffe. Many of the plants are considered holy and sacred in our country like Tulsi( Holy basil). 5. also have significant place in our psycho-spiritual arena and thus hold special social importance. 6. religion and psycho-spiritual aspects of the people. 4.40
3. there is an ethical value or existence value attached to each species. We all feel sorry when we learn that “passenger pigeon” or “dodo” is no more on this earth.
03 million are animals and 248000 are higher plants. It refers to the services provided by ecosystems like prevention of soil erosion. their role as carbon sinks. in terms of the option to visit areas where a variety of flora and fauna. A legislation was finalized and Indian Parliament passed Biodiversity Bill in 2002.4 million having species. Higher plants have also been fairly well studied but it is possible that 15 percent more may still be discovered.41 precious gifts of nature presented to us. But human knowledge of the world’s biodiversity is still not complete. The Government of India has finalized the National Policy and Action Strategy for Biodiversity. Numerous insects. scientists have identified about 1. Different categories of biodiversity value clearly indicate that ecosystem. rare or endangered species exist. agriculture to Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs). economic and social aspects of biodiversity. species and ecosystems) and b) by measuring the effectiveness of measures taken to implement the convention. Of these around 1. fixation of nitrogen. The 1992. lower
. The objective of the convention was “the conservation of biological diversity.” It also covered the ecological. According to the Worldwide Fund for Nature. or specifically some endemic. 7. a non-consumptive use value related to self maintenance of the ecosystem and various important ecosystem services has been recognized. prevention of floods maintenance of soil fertility. cycling of water. The option value also includes the values. invertebrates. Ecosystem service value: Recently. GLOBAL BIODIVERSITY All the three levels are linked and constitute a gene pool. ecological and socio-cultural losses. United Nations Conference on Environment and Development at Rio put biological diversity on the international agenda by signing the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). The success of convention can be evaluated in two main ways: a) By analyzing the changes in biodiversity components (i. pollutant absorption and reduction of the threat of global warming etc.e. This convention addresses many issues ranging from forests. India is a signatory to CBD and ratified it in 1993. cycling of nutrients. the sustainable use of its components and equitable sharing of benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources. We should not commit the folly of losing these gifts even before unwrapping them. species and genetic diversity all have enormous potential and a decline in biodiversity will lead to huge economic.
01 million hectares having rich biodiversity of plants in the Trans-Himalayan. coral reefs and mangroves which need to be studied in detail. Gangetic plains.42 plants and microorganisms exist but have yet to be identified and described. by the year 2050 up to 60000 plant species will become extinct or threatened.5% respectively of global flora and fauna. In 1988. Due to very diverse climatic conditions there is a complete rainbow spectrum of biodiversity in our country. These estimates show that the current rate of extinction is at least 25000 times greater than extinction that took place during evolutionary times. India possesses two. deccan plateau and the Andaman. Marine diversity etc. Govt. BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY AT NATIONAL LEVEL (Indian Biodiversity): Every country is characterized by its own biodiversity depending mainly on its climate. The rate of extinction of mammals alone has risen from one species every five years in the 17th century to one every two years in the 20th century. one in the north-east region and one in the Western Ghats. Out of a total 25 biodiversity hot-spots in the world. According to an estimate by the IUCN’s Threatened Plants Unit. Center of origin. There are about 93 major wet lands. 11th in terms of number of endemic species of higher vertebrates and 6th among the centers of diversity and origin of agricultural crops. the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) listed 4589 threatened animals. coasts. Those major groups of species include Endemism. western ghats. Scientists at the Kew Gardens in Britain listed around 20000 plant species as threatened. Indian is also one of the 12 megabiodiversity countries in the world. Indian forests cover 64. It is estimated that India ranks 10th among the plant rich countries of the world. central and eastern Himalayan forests. of India (2000) records 47000 species of plants and 81000 species of animals which is about 7% and 6. Total number of living species identified in our country is 150000. Many thousands of species will disappear even before they are found and described by biologists.
. One recent estimate put this figure as high as 30 million. west. INDIA AS A MEGA-DIVERSITY NATION: India is one of the 12 mega-diversity countries in the world. Human impact on nature has reached such high proportions that the world is today witnessing an extraordinary rate of species loss. India has a rich biological diversity of flora and fauna. A large proportion of the Indian Biodiversity is still unexpected. The Ministry of Environment and Forests. deserts. Nicobar and Lakshadweep islands. Overall six percent of the global species are found in India. north-west.
The term “Hot spots” was introduced by Myers (1988). the rate of loss of species in geologic past has been a slow process. Species which are restricted only to particular areas are known as endemic.the new Amambalam Reserve Basin. THREATS TO BIODIVERSITY: Extinction or elimination of a species is a natural process of evolution. It is reported that only 6. If the present
. In the century the human impact has been so severe that thousands of species and varieties are becoming extinct annually. There are 25 such hot spots of biodiversity on a global level out of which two are present in India. These hotspots covering less than 2% of the world’s land area are found to have about 50% of the terrestrial biodiversity. In the geologic period the earth has experienced mass extinctions. keeping in view the vast span of time going back to 444 million years. Over the last 150 years the rate of extinction has escalated more dramatically. These amazing figures raise an alarm regarding the serious threat to biodiversity. One of the estimates by the noted ecologist puts figure of extinction at 10000 species per year or 27 per day.43 HOT SPOTS OF BIODIVERSITY Areas which exhibit high species richness as well as high species endemism are termed as hot spots of biodiversity. The major centers of diversity are Agastyamalai Hills and Silent valley.5% of the plant species as endemics.8% of the original forests are existing today while the rest has been deforested or degraded. a) Eastern Himalayas: They display an ultra-varies topography that fosters species diversity and endemism. because it means we have already lost a huge proportion of the biodiversity. namely the Eastern Himalayas and Western Ghats. According to Myers an area is designated as a hotspot when it contains at least 0. However. Western Ghats are the site of maximum endemism. India shows a good number of endemic species. During evolution. Out of the world’s recorded flora 30% are endemic to India of which 35000 are in the Himalayas. About 62% of amphibians and 50% of lizards are endemic to India. b) Western Ghats: It extends along a 17000 km² strip of forests in Maharashtra. Tamilnadu and Kerala and has 40% of the the total endemic plant species. Karnataka. Recent studies have shown that North East India along with its contiguous regions of Burma and Chinese provinces of Yunnan and Schezwan is an active center of organic evolution and is considered to be the cradle of flowering plants. The process of extinction has become particularly fast in the recent years of civilization. species have died out and have been replaced by others. which raises a serious cause of alarm.
Despite international ban on trade in products from endangered species. Marine diversity is also under serious threat due to large scale destruction of the fragile breeding and feeding grounds of our oceanic fish and other species. They get badly threatened as they breed only in the interiors of the forests. Sometimes the loss of habitat is in installments so that the habitat is divided into small and scattered patches. Poaching: Illegal trade of wildlife products by killing prohibited endangered animals i. 2. poaching is another threat to wildlife. Loss of habitat: Destruction and loss of natural habitat is the single largest cause of biodiversity loss. tusks. Severe damage has been caused to wetlands thinking them to be useless ecosystems. The unique rich biodiversity of the wetlands. at a rate of about 0. The wetlands are destroyed due to draining. Due to habitat fragmentation many song birds are vanishing. settlement areas or development projects.e. The rich countries in Europe and North America and some affluent countries in Asia like Japan. hides. The developing nations in Asia.6% per year. it is estimated that 20-25% of the global flora would be lost within few years. as a result of human intervention. With the current rate of loss of forest habitat. live specimens and herbal products worth millions of dollars per year continues. Taiwan and Hong Kong are the major importers of the wildlife products or wildlife itself.
. estuaries and mangroves are under the most serious threat today. Latin America and Africa are the richest source of biodiversity and have enormous wealth of wildlife.44 trend continues we would lose 1/3rd to 2/3rd of our current biodiversity by the middle of twenty first century. These natural forests and grasslands were the natural homes of thousands of species which perished due to loss of their natural habitat. The trading of such wild life products is highly profit making for the poachers who just hunt these prohibited wild lives and smuggle it to other countries mediated through mafia. a phenomenon known as habitat fragmentation. There are many wild life species such as bears and large cats that require large territories so subsist. filling and pollution thereby causing huge biodiversity loss. smuggling of wildlife items like furs. The worst part is that for every live animal that actually gets into the market about 50 additional animals are caught and killed. Following are the major causes and issues related to threats to biodiversity: 1. There has been a rapid disappearance of tropical forests in our country also. horns. pastures. Billions of hectares of forests and grasslands have been cleared over the past 10000 years for conservation into agriculture lands.
more killings are done by locals than by poachers. The park renowned for its wildlife conservation effort has become a zone of terror for the locals. rhinos and bears due to shrinking forests cover are compelled to move outside the forests and attack the field or sometimes even humans. You will certainly help in preserving biodiversity by doing so.
. purse or bag. In retaliation the villagers killed 95 elephants in the border region of Kote-Chamarajanagar belt in Mysore have been reported recently. Borivali. 2004 two men were killed by leopards in Powai. please make sure that you are not going to the endangered species or wild-caught species. MAN-WILDLIFE CONFLICTS We have discussed about the need to preserve and protect wildlife. 240 Km South-west of Kathmandu. Doing so will help in checking further decline of these species. At times. Causes of Man-animal conflicts: 1. elephants. Mumbai. A total of 14 persons were killed during 19 attacks since January by the leopards from the Sanjay Gandhi National Park. in early 2004. Instances of man animal conflicts keep on coming to lime light from several states in our country. This is because the conflicts between man and the wildlife have increased since it is an issue of survival of both. Also do not purchase fur coat. such conflicting situations have been reported from the border regions of Corbett. Mumbai where similar incidents of human killings especially small children was reported. Similar incidents were reported near Sanjay Gandhi National Park.45 If you are fond of rare plants. or items made of crocodile skin or python skin. Mumbai which has triggered a panic among the local residents. The man-elephant conflict in this region has arisen because of massive damage done by the elephants to the farmer’s cotton and sugarcane crops. Orissa 195 humans were killed in the last 5 years by elephants. Recently. Dwindling habitats of tigers. Very recently in June. Palamau and Ranthambore National Parks in our country as well. In Sambalpur. Dudhwa. which explode as the elephants intrude into their fields. The agonized villagers electrocute the elephants and sometimes hide explosives in the sugarcane fields. However. Human encroachment into the forest areas has rendered all forest living animals to trespass the borders of human civilizations. fish or birds. a man-eating tiger reported to kill 16 Nepalese people and one 4 year old child inside the Royal Chitwan National Part. sometimes we come across conflicting situations when wildlife starts causing immense damage and danger to man and under such conditions it becomes very difficult for the forest department to pacify the affected villages and gain local support for wildlife conservation. In fact.
forest department used to cultivate paddy. The elephants get injured.e. 4. Earlier there used to be wild-life corridors through which the wild animals used to migrate seasonally in groups to other areas. binoculars and radio sets etc. the path of wildlife has been disrupted and the animals attack the settlements. Also. one adult elephant needs 2 quintals of green fodder and 150 kg of clean water daily and if it is not available. 3. 5. Very often the villagers put electric wiring around their ripe crop fields. Solar powered fencing should be provided along with electric current proof trenches to prevent the animals from straying into fields. It may be noted that. The agonized farmer therefore gets revengeful and kills the wild animals. sugarcane etc. The cash compensation paid by the government in lieu of the damage caused to the farmers crop is not enough.400/. Earlier. along with substantial cash compensation for loss of human life. Now due to lack of such practices the animals move out of the forest in search of food. suffer in pain and turn violent. At the same time. Remedial Measures to Curb the Conflict: 1. 6. fruit and water should be made available for the elephants within forest zones. bamboo leaves were not available. But the biggest problem is that if human-flesh is tested once then the tiger does not eat any other animal.per quintal. within the sanctuaries when the favourite staple food of elephants i. In Mysore.
. Due to development of human settlements in these corridors. the animal strays out. 4. 2. 3. a farmer gets compensation of Rs.per quintal of expected yield while the market price is Rs. Cropping pattern should be changed near the forest borders and adequate fodder. tranquillizer guns. Usually the ill.2400/. to tactfully deal with any imminent danger. the female tigress attacks the human if she feels that her newborn cubs are in danger. Adequate crop compensation and cattle compensation scheme must be started.46 2. Tiger Conservation Project (TCP) has made provisions for making available vehicles. it is very difficult to trace and cull the man-eating tiger and in the process many innocent tigers are also killed. weak and injured animals have a tendency to attack man.
aesthetic. About 300 km² area is required for elephant corridors for their seasonal migration. commercial. What are hotspots of biodiversity? Which are the hotspots found in India? Discuss salient features. social value. ecological and optional importance emphasizes the need to conserve biodiversity. Orissa there is a ritual of wild animal hunting during the month of April-May for which forest is burnt to flush out the animals. zoos. 2. Wild life corridors should be provided for mass migration of big animals during unfavourable periods. Reserve Forests etc b) Ex situ conservation (outside habitats): This is done by establishment of gene banks. National Parks. Biosphere Reserves. Explain genetic. Now there is WWF-TCP initiative to curb this ritual of “Akhand Shikar” in Orissa. seed banks. What are the major threats to biodiversity? 4. In Similipal Sanctuary. Due to massive hunting by people. 6. 5.g. 6. there is a decline in prey of tigers and they start coming out of the forest in search of prey. Define biodiversity.47 5. Sanctuaries. ethical value and option value of biodiversity? 3. What is meant by in situ and ex situ conservation of biodiversity?
CONSERVATION OF BIODIVERSITY: The enormous value of biodiversity due to their genetic. botanical gardens. What are the main causes of man-wildlife conflicts? Discuss the remedial steps that can curb the conflict. culture collection etc. productive use value. rather it is a gift of nature to be nurtured and enjoyed. There are two approaches to biodiversity conservation: a) In situ conservation (within habitat) : This is achieved by protection of wild flora and fauna in nature itself e. Gradually we are realizing that wildlife is not just ‘a game to be hunted’. medical. Questions: 1. What do you mean by consumptive use value. species and ecosystem diversities.
the urban areas in particular.g. Environment includes water.48
Unit 5: Environmental Pollution
Environmental Pollution: Definition: causes. The atmosphere is being polluted by the discharge of emissions originating from industrial plants. Both in the developed and developing countries. The reference point of pollution is the ambient quality of the environment which means environment in its natural state. Pollution refers to substances (pollutants) which are released into the environment because of anthropogenic (human) activities that can be either deliberate or accidental (e. water resource management etc. Thermal pollution. cyclone and landslides Objectives: • To learn the definition. effects and control measures of – Air pollution. The contamination of air occurs because the contaminants cannot be absorbed by natural environmental cycles. domestic sources. Marine pollution. mobile vehicles and thermal power plants. Air pollution is thus the state of environment in which the outer atmosphere gets contaminated with gases and other materials in concentration which are harmful to man and environment. water and land. role of an individual in prevention of pollution. earthquake. causes and effects of various types of pollutions • To evaluate the problem of pollution and understanding various remedies • To ascertain need for disaster management • To understand the need for solid management. hydro carbons and toxic particulate substances in atmosphere has caused harmful influence on man and other living things. Nuclear hazards. land and their inter relationship with human beings. nitrogen oxides. Soil pollution. Disaster management: floods. are exposed to such levels of atmospheric pollution that cause serious hazard to public health and hygiene. effects and control measures of urban and industrial water. plants and micro-organisms. other living creatures. Noise pollution. carbon monoxide. Water pollution. whether they result from human activity or occur naturally which have adverse effects on human and on environment. water and land result in the change in the ambient quality
. pollution case studies. Pollution refers to the presence of substances air. The human activities whether industrial production or other like sewage and their impact on air. Solid waste management: causes. air. Bhopal gas leak or radioactive material released from Chernobyl nuclear power plant is accidental. Introduction: According to Environment Protection Act (1986). Presence of sulphar oxides.
sulphur dioxide. 1981. These are ‘standards’ and legislation that exist for emissions. certain substances (wastes) are recycled or produced in the form of emissions/ effluents and they impact the environment leading to damage to humans and ecosystem. These include gases. These acid droplets constitute Acid Rain. Primary pollutants are carbon dioxide. nitrogen oxides. liquid or gaseous substance coming out of any chimney. AIR POLLUTION The Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act. Approximately 95 per cent of earth’s air occurs in the lower levels. In natural state this air contains 78% nitrogen. biological decay. They should also ensure that emissions stay within legal limits. forest fires. 21% oxygen. “Emission” means any solid. sea salt sprays. It is an atmospheric in which certain substances are present in concentrations which can cause undesirable effects on man and his environment. extra
. 0. liquid or gaseous substance (including noise) present in the atmosphere in such concentration as may be or tend to be injurious to human beings or other living creatures or plants or property or environment. “Air Pollutant” means any solid. In this connection definition of “Emission” is also relevant. photochemical oxidation.49 of the latter. Rest 05% of the planet air occurs in the upper levels. Hence. radio active substances etc. carbon monoxide (all formed from the combustion of fossil fuels). These are substances released from volcano eruptions or forest fires. The company manager must be familiar with these. But these natural pollutants don’t stay long in the atmosphere since they can be recycled in the biological or chemical cycles. the troposphere. they pose only a short-term problem and that too localized. It may be worthwhile to note that there are natural sources of pollution too. particulate matter. Natural resources: The natural sources of air pollution are volcanic eruptions. duct or any other outlet. In the production process. Air pollutants can be primary or secondary. Sulphur dioxide and nitrogen dioxide combine with water in the atmosphere and react with sunlight forming acid droplets. Air pollution means the presence in the atmosphere of any air pollutant. the stratosphere together with gases like ozone.4% carbon dioxide plus small amounts of other gases and water vapours. Sources of Air Pollution: The sources of Air pollution are natural and man-made (anthropogenic). CFC and particulate matter Secondary pollutants are acid rain and ozone. defines “Air Pollutant” and in reference to them defines air pollution.
Metallurgical plants also consume coal and produce similar pollutants Fertilizer plants. dung-cakes. Man-made: Man made sources include thermal power plants. smelters. reproductive problems or even cancer. 3. textile mills. 4. however. Radioactive minerals present in the earth crust are the sources of radioactivity in the atmosphere.50 terrestrial bodies. chemical industries. The main pollutants emitted are fly ash and SO2. Effects on aquatic life: Air pollutants mixing up with rain can cause high acidity in fresh water lakes. Effects on human health: Affects respiratory system. tiles etc. this affects aquatic life especially fish. Effects on plants: These pollutants affect plants by entering through stomata. Thermal power plants have become the major sources for generating electricity in India as the nuclear power plants could be installed as planned. Many other pollutants may have toxic metals which can cause mutations. Effects of Air pollution: 1. incomplete combustion produces toxic gas carbon monoxide. years of exposure to air pollutants including cigarette smoke adversely affect these natural defenses and can result in lung cancer. asthma. Effects on materials: Because of their corrosiveness particulates can cause damage to exposed surfaces. The damage results in death of the plant. concrete. Automobile exhaust is another major source of air pollution Indoor Air pollution: The most important indoor air pollution is radon gas. Some of the freshwater lakes have experienced total fish death. wood and kerosene in their kitchens. 2. pollen grains of flowers etc. paper and pulp mills are other sources of air pollution. fossil fuel burning. This is responsible for a large number of lung cancer deaths each year. chronic bronchitis etc. Completion combustion of fuel produces carbon dioxide which may be toxic. Control of Air Pollution: Air pollution can be minimized by the following methods:
. vehicular emissions. These could be emitted from building materials like bricks. Many houses in the underdeveloped countries including India use fuels like coal. agricultural activities etc. industrial units.
2. by engine modification to have fuel effective (lean) mixtures to reduce CO and hydrocarbon emissions and slow and cooler burning of fuels to reduce NOx emission (Honda Technology) 7. cyclone separators. 6. liquid or solid. Effects of Noise: 1. Removing particulate from stack exhaust gases by employing electrostatic precipitators. The unpleasant and unwanted sound is called noise.51 1. Planting more trees. Interfaces with man’s communication: In a noisy area communication is severely affected. Using low sulphar coal in industries 3. A type of sound may be pleasant to someone and at the same time unpleasant to others. Using biological filters and bio-scrubbers 11. scrubbers etc. bag-house filters. 10. Sound wave is a pressure perturbation in the medium through which sound travels. Sound is mechanical energy from a vibrating source. Using mass transport system. 5. 8.
. Shifting to less polluting fuels (hydrogen gas) 9. Sound pressure is expressed in Hertz (Hz) and is equal to the number of cycles per second. The CPCB committee has recommended permissible noise levels for different locations. Removing NOx during the combustion process. Removing sulphar from coal (by washing or with the help of bacteria) 4. NOISE POLLUTION: We hear various types of sounds everyday. bicycles etc. Sound can propagate through a medium like air. converters. Using non-conventional sources of energy. Vehicular pollution can be checked by regular tune-up of engines. Setting up of industries after proper Environmental Impact Assessment studies.
2. power plants. Therefore it can easily get polluted. Planting more trees having board leaves. Through Law: Legislation can ensure that sound production is minimized at various social functions. Noise making machines should be kept in containers with sound absorbing media.
. 3. Proper oiling will reduce the noise from the machinery. gastro-intestinal and digestive disorders etc. Pollution of water can be caused by point sources or non-point sources . It depends on intensity and duration of sound level. Sources of water pollution: Water is an essential commodity for survival. Use of sound absorbing silencers: Silencers can reduce noise by absorbing sound.Major point sources of water pollution are industries. Water has the property to dissolve many substances in it. Hearing damage: Noise can cause temporary or permanent hearing loss. chemical or biological characteristics of water making it unsuitable for designated use in its natural state. cooking. 6. insomnia (sleeplessness).
WATER POLLUTION Water pollution can be defined as alteration in physical. 5. underground coal mines. irrigation and for industrial operations. 4. The noise path will be interrupted and will not reach the workers. Unnecessary horn blowing should be restricted especially in vehicle-congested areas. It may result in hypertension. offshore oil wells etc. For this purpose various types of fibrous material could be used. Control of noise pollution: 1. Auditory sensitivity is reduced with noise level of over 90 dB in the midhigh frequency for more than a few minutes. We need water for drinking. Reduction in sources of noise 2. bathing. Physiological and psychological changes: Continuous exposure to noise affects the functioning of various systems of the body. washing. 3.
Oxygen demanding wastes 2. Surface water pollution: The major sources of surface water pollution are: 1 . 3. 1. Waste heat Effects of Water Pollution: Following are some important effects of various types of water pollutants: 1.Sewage 2. Toxic Compounds Pesticides in drinking water ultimately reach humans and are known to cause various health problems. Agrochemicals 5. deep well injection. However due to absence of defined strategies it becomes difficult to prevent water pollution from non-point sources. Synthetic detergents 4. Nitrogen and Phosphorus Compounds (Nutrients) 3.53
Ground water pollution: Ground water forms about 6. industry (textile. Judicious use of agrochemicals like pesticides and fertilizers which will reduce their surface urn-off and leaching. tanneries). have therefore. streams. Ground water pollution with arsenic. The following points may help to reduce water pollution from non-point sources.2% of the total water available on planet earth and is about 30 times more than surface water i. Industrial effluents 3. 2. lakes and estuaries. Control of Water Pollution It is easy to reduce water pollution from point sources by legislation. fluoride and nitrate are posing serious health hazards. Septic tanks. aldrin. Pathogens 4. are mainly responsible for ground water pollution which is irreversible. DDT.
. mining etc. Avoid use of these on sloped lands. dieldrin etc. Recently in Andhra Pradesh people suffered from various abnormalities due to consumption of endosulphan contaminated cashew nuts.e. chemical. Use of nitrogen fixing plants to supplement the use of fertilizers. Oil 6. been banned. Adopting integrated pest management to reduce reliance on pesticides.
5. 4. refineries. 2. steel mills etc are the major sources of thermal pollution. Heat producing industries like thermal power plants. 6. 5. Metabolic activities of aquatic organisms increase at high temperature and require more oxygen level falls under thermal pollution. detergents and chemicals in the effluents increases with increase in temperature. 3. The nutrient rich water can be used as fertilizer in the fields. Plantation of trees would reduce pollution and will also prevent soil erosion. Separate drainage of sewage and rain water should be provided. nuclear power plants. THERMAL POLLUTION Thermal pollution can be defined as presence of waste heat in the water which can cause undesirable changes in the natural environment.Fish migrations are affected due to formation of various thermal zones.54 4. Divert such run-off to basin for settlement. 7 . Toxicity of pesticides. Effects of Thermal Pollution: 1 The dissolved oxygen content of water is decreased as the solubility of oxygen in water is decreased high temperature. Discharge of heated water near the shores can disturb spawning and can even kill young fishes. Control of Thermal Pollution: The following methods can be employed for control of thermal pollution 1 Cooling ponds 2 Spray Ponds 3. The composition of flora and fauna changes because the species sensitive to increased temperature due to thermal shock will be replaced by temperature tolerant species. 6. Prevent run-off of manure. High temperature becomes a barrier for oxygen penetration into deep cold waters. Cooling towers
The pollutants which these rivers carry from their drainage basins are finally poured into the sea. coastline where human settlements in the form of hotels. These include sewage sludge. It can cause adverse effects on marine life. metals and waste heat released by industries as discussed earlier. agrochemicals. Sewer overflows should be prevented by having separate sewer and rain water pipes. 5. Control of Marine Pollution 1. industry. synthetic detergents. 7. refinery. metal industry. 8. 3. Ecologically sensitive coastal areas should be protected by not allowing drilling. 4. Oil in sea water can spread over a large area of the sea remain dispersed or get adsorbed on sediments. plastics. 6. lubrication oil using industry. Toxic pollutants from industries and sewage treatment plants should not be discharged in coastal waters.e. Oil ballast should not be dumped into sea. 2. Oil and grease from service stations should be processed for reuse. Run off from non-point sources should be prevented to reach coastal areas.55
MARINE POLLUTION The main sources of marine pollution are 1) rivers. solid wastes. Developmental l activities on coastal areas should be minimized. ship-accidents and off shore production add to marine pollution. Still many pollutants specially the recalcitrant ones remain unchanged or are partially degraded causing marine pollution. Tankers and other shipping means industries like petroleum. agricultural practices have been established and 3) oil drilling and shipment. Most of the rivers ultimately join the ocean. industrial effluents.
. hazardous wastes and sewage sludge should be banned. paint industry etc automotive wastes refineries. Dumping of toxic. In the sea the pollutants get diluted and the organic matter is further broken down as in river water. which bring pollutants from their drainage basins 2) catchment are i.
plastics. viruses and intestinal worms which cause pollution in the soil. Sewage sludge has many types of bacteria. insecticides etc. Industrial wastes also contain some organic and inorganic compounds that are refractory and non-biodegradable. paints varnishes etc. Biodegradable organic waste should be used for generation of biogas. 4. 2. 3. Some of the persistent toxic chemicals accumulate in food chain and ultimately affect human health. Domestic wastes include garbage. Control of Soil Pollution 1 . Dumping of various types of materials especially domestic and industrial wastes causes soil pollution.Huge quantities of these wastes are dumped on soils. containers. bacteria. Organic matter in the soil makes it suitable for living organisms. Solid wastes should be properly collected and disposed off by appropriate method. in the industrial discharges affect soil fertility by causing changes in physical. 5.
. Cattle dung should be used for methane generation.Effluents should be properly treated before discharging them on the soil. Effects of Soil Pollution Sewage and industrial effluents which pollute the soil ultimately affect human health. cloth rags. rubbish material like glass. Soil also receives excreta from animals and humans. alkalis. From the wastes. Leachates from dumping sites and sewage tanks are harmful and toxic which pollute the soil. Night soil can also be used in the biogas plant to produce inflammable methane gas. pesticides. chemical and biological properties. paper. Various types of chemicals like acids. metallic cans. The sewage sludge contains many pathogenic organisms. fibres.56
SOIL POLLUTION Soil is the upper layer of the earth curst which is formed by weathering of rocks. recovery of useful products should be done. thus contaminating them. Thermal power plants generate a large quantity of ‘fly ash’ . viruses and intestinal worms which may cause various types of diseases.
They undergo natural radioactive decay in which unstable isotopes spontaneously give out fast moving particles. offices. Proper disposal of wastes from laboratory involving the use of radioisotopes should be done. agricultural. 2. It is now realized that if waste generation continues indiscriminately then very soon it would be beyond rectification. Setting up of nuclear power plants should be carefully done after studying long and term effects. peanut shells. markets (commercial waste) small cottage units. stale food. Microbial degradation of biodegradable substances is also one of the scientific approaches for reducing soil pollution. Management of solid waste has therefore become very important in order to minimize the adverse effects of solid wastes. Sources of Urban and Industrial wastes: These wastes consists of medical waste from hospitals. mining waste and sewage sludge. and horticulture waste from parks. Control of Nuclear Pollution: 1. Solid waste (waste other than liquid or gaseous) can be classified as municipal. medical. SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT Higher standard of living of ever increasing population has resulted in an increase in the quantity and variety of waste generated.
. high energy radiations or both. at a fixed rate until a new stable isotope is formed. The urban solid waste materials that can be degraded by microorganisms are called biodegradable wastes. For example these types of waste are vegetable wastes. tea leaves. These particles and its rays pass through paper and wood but can be stopped by concrete wall. gardens and orchards etc. industrial. lead slabs or water. egg shells. NUCLEAR HAZARDS Radioactive substances are present in nature. dry leaves etc.57 6. Damage caused by different types of radiations depends on the penetration power and presence of the source inside or outside body. municipal solid waste from homes.
This produces foul smell and breeds various types of insects and infectious organisms besides spoiling the aesthetics of the site. Recycling of materials For discarding wastes the following methods could be used: 1. 1. packaging material. glass bottles etc. Recently Government of Maharshtra is the process of passing legislation on usage of polyethylene bags. polyethylene bags. which may spread on land and can cause changes in physicochemical and biological characteristics thereby affecting productivity of soils. Reduction in use of raw materials 2. People clean their own houses and litter their immediate surroundings which affect the community including themselves. Reuse and Recycle before destruction and safe storage of wastes.g. This type of dumping allows biodegradable materials to decompose under uncontrolled and unhygienic conditions. Management of solid waste: For waste management we must focus on three ‘Rs’. There are large quantities of hazardous and toxic materials are also produced during industrial processing.58 Wastes that cannot be degraded by microorganisms are called nonbiodegradable waste e. Reuse of waste materials 3.Reduce. Effects of solid wastes: Municipal solid waste heap up on the roads due to improper disposal system. acids etc. organic waste. Industrial solid wastes are sources of toxic metals and hazardous wastes. Toxic substances may leach or percolate to contaminate the ground water. Sanitary landfill 2. Government had put a ban on use of these bags. scrap metal. Industrial waste consists of large number of materials including factory rubbish. Incineration
. Composting 3.
It can be done through following suggestions: 1. It is appropriately said “Think globally act locally. state or national level but also at the global level as environment has no boundaries.Laluprasad Yadav.Railway Minister has initiated use of earthen pots for tea serving in Railway which is a commendable decision in this regard. If they cost more than their higher prices may be offset by including environmental and the social costs of pollution in the price of such products which pollute environment.e. hydrogen fuel. 4. Cut down the use of CFCs as they destroy the ozone layer. Hydrogen for that matter should not be produced by passing current in water as for generation of this current.” Each individual should change his or her lifestyle in such a way as to reduce environmental pollution. Help more in pollution prevention than pollution control 2. Do not use polystyrene cups that have CFC molecules in them which destroy ozone layerHon’ble Mr. It is the responsibility of the human race which has occupied the commanding positions on this earth to protect the earth and provide conducive environment for itself an innumerable other species which evolved oh this earth. again the environment will be polluted. A small effort made by each individual at his own place will have pronounced effect at the global level. Use the chemicals derived from peaches and plums to clean computer chips and circuit boards instead of CFCs. city. Use CFC free Refrigerators The manufacture and operation of such devices should be encouraged that don’t pollute. Following are the practical hints for an individual to prevent pollution: • Reduce your dependency on fossil fuel especially coal or oil
. Air pollution can be prevented by using really clean fuel i.59 ROLE OF AN INDIVIDUAL IN PREVENTION OF POLLUTION The role of every individual in preventing pollution is of paramount importance because if every individual contributes substantially the effect will be visible not only at the community. 5. So solar hydrogen fuel is the need of the hour. Use eco-friendly products 3.
oils or other harmful chemicals into the drain or ground water. Improve energy efficiency. floods and landslides are normal natural events which have resulted in the formation of the earth that we have today. Use less hazardous chemicals wherever possible. Decrease the use of automobiles.60 • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Save electricity by not washing it when not required because electricity saved electricity generated without polluting the environment. Adopt and popularize renewable energy sources. For short visits use bicycle or go on foot. volcanoes.
DISASTER MANAGEMENT: Geological processes like earthquakes.
. Use only the minimum and required quantity of water for various activities When building a home save (don’t cut) trees. it will reduce metal pollution. Use mass transport system. They are however disastrous in their impact when they affect human settlements. solvents. Use rechargeable batteries. The solid waste generated during one manufacturing process can be used as a raw material for some other processes. Human societies have witnessed a large number of such natural hazards in different parts of the world and have tried to learn to control these processes to some extent. paints. Check population growth so that demand of materials is under controls. Use pesticides only when absolutely necessary that too in right amounts. Plant more trees as trees can absorb many toxic gases and can purify the air. This will reduce the amount of waste energy Promote reuse and recycling whatever possible and reduce the production of wastes. Do not put pesticides.
5. Type Floods Droughts Earthquakes Cyclones Landslides Location/area 8 major river valleys spread over 40 million hectares of area in the entire country Spread in 14 states Nearly 55% of the total area of the country falling in the seismic zone IV and V Entire 5700 km long coastline of Southern Peninsular India covering 9 states Entire Sub-Himalayan Regions and Western Ghats Affected pollution(in million) 260 86 400 10 10
Major such disasters include a devastating earthquake which hit Bhuj Town in Gujarat caused massive damage.g.
. 3.No.causes a great economic loss and health related problems. Koyna Dam in Maharashtra have created few incidence of minor and major earthquakes. 4. 2.61
Frequently occurring natural disasters in India Sr. Damage of property and life can be prevented by constructing earth-quake resistant buildings in the earthquake prone zones. 2. Following care should be taken as set of measures for Disaster Management: 1. Pokharan II testing at desert of Rajasthan. Water and vegetation influence landslides.Anthropogenic activities such as Impoundment of huge quantities of water in the lake behind a big dam e. under ground nuclear testing e. There are several causes for such disasters which include: 1. 3. Chemical action of water gradually causes chemical weathering of rocks making them prone to landslides. Deep well disposal of liquid waste. Due to heavy rainfalls or sudden snow melt can swell the rivers disproportionately. 1. Wooden houses are preferred in earthquake prone areas as in Japan.. Landslides occur when coherent rock of soil masses move down slope due to gravitational pull.g. Earth-quake generated water waves called Tsunamis caused tremendous damage in Tamilnadu and Kerala.
What are the sources of soil pollution? How does soil pollution affect soil productivity? What are the remedies for the same? 8. disturbances in resistant rock overlying rock of low resistance etc. Flood plains should be used for wildlife habitat. Differentiate between sound and noise. 4. What are the adverse effects and measures to control water pollution? 7. These landslides could be minimized by stabilizing the slope by draining the surface and surface water. providing slope support like gabions (Wired stone blocks) and concrete support at the base of a slope. 2. It is difficult to stop the recurrence of cyclones. storm shelter. 3. construction of dams. To check the flood. 4. proper drainage and wide roads for quick evacuation etc. Define pollution. 5. How can we control it? 3. Such measures include planting of more trees on the coastal belt. These landslides should be masked by many other exerting factors like earthquakes. 6. efforts need to be made to restore wetlands. Questions: 1. Write note on Air Pollution. Some long term defence measures can help to protect us from devastation. Briefly describe the sources. How can you as an individual prevent environmental pollution? Why such effort is necessary? 10. Name various atmospheric pollutants. Write a short note on Water Pollution. build check-dams on small streams. move buildings off the flood plains etc. What are the sources of urban and industrial solid waste? 9. Classify solid waste. replace ground cover on water-courses. vibrations.62 2. embarkments. effects and control of noise pollution. parks. wind breaks. recreational areas etc. What are various types of disasters? How could they be controlled? What are the steps to be borne in mind in Disaster Management?
. watershed management. Environmental protection Act. Nature is finite.from unsustainable to sustainable development. Water conservation. Resettlement and rehabilitation of people. Issues and possible solutions. Water(prevention and control of pollution) Act. economic and environmental issues. It also requires that a nation or society should be able to satisfy its requirements. rain harvesting. the national as well as international leaders and institutions respectively have major responsibility for sound developmental. Therefore. economic and others.social. Public awareness. Mother Nature has been making available its resources and services as well it is also serving as receptacle for absorbing wastes for too long a time. Consumerism and waste products. These experts are strong advocates of “limits to growth” philosophy. They should keep in view the principle of equity and those principles that determine the intergenerational inequities. We have to realize now that Nature today is very fragile. its problems and concerns Case studies. Wasteland reclamation.without undermining the interest of future generations. Countries of North (Developed) use too many natural resources and such practice cannot continue long. Objectives: • To understand the concept of sustainable development • To diagnose the urban problems related to energy • To evaluate various initiatives for solutions to problems related to environment • To know various legal initiatives taken by government in the form of various legislations FROM UNSUSTAINABLE TO SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT Sustainable Development is such a concept that signifies that rate of consumption or use of natural resources should be approximate the rate at which these resources can be substituted or replaced. Issues involved in enforcement of environmental legislation. Environmental ethics.63
Unit 6: SOCIAL ISSUES AND THE ENVIRONMENT
Social Issues and the Environment. And experts have warned that it has reached to a critical threshold beyond which it would lead to Ecological Decline that would further lead to nothing but “DISASTER”. This concept of sustainable development can be further extended with the principle of justice and equity (equal distribution) between the peoples of North and South.Air(presentation and control of pollution) Act. Wildlife Protection Act. Urban problems related to energy.
resource depletion/environmental damage has been debated. To summarize. social and environmental systems interact at various scales of operation to lead sustainable development that will strike optimal balance among the three subsystems. environmental damage and social instability.64 Another aspect of sustainable development is related to System Analysis. Sustainable Development (Following aspects are to be highlighted) *Protecting environment *Avoiding depletion of non-renewable resources *Seek reliance on alternative sources *Equal access to resources *Principle of Intergenerational distribution of resources-Important *Systems thinking Fundamentals of Environment and Sustainable Development • Population and its implication:
There are two aspects that affect environment: a) Population growth and b) economic development. High population growth causes stress on environment. industrial growth and unsustainable economic development are the matters of cause for concern especially in development. The interaction between population growth. who feel that blame has to be on economic development. It must ultimately lead to reducing poverty of people in developing countries by minimizing resources depletion. how economic. It can be expressed with following equation: I=PxAxT I= Impact of environment = Population = Affluence (consumption) T= Technology coefficient
. that is to say. and there are opposite thinkers are also.
The “earth’s carrying capacity” is not seriously thought about. We will need to set a level of sufficiency i. This will be possible only if it is promoted through changes in the fiscal system which supports appropriate technological improvements. Since efficiency grew. and hence efficiency revolution will remain counterproductive if its not
. But this can happen for a certain time. Ecology of means has to be accompanied by an ecology of ends. Sustainable development is about integrational equity. If not population factor itself would be sufficient contribution toward degradation of environment and resource depletion. For example.all having adverse effects on environment. We are adding more than Australia in terms of population each year. This is not a correct assumption.e. Just improvement of efficiency alone is not going to be enough.65 More people means more pressure on resources. But if future equity is of great concern. more consumption of energy. There is a difference between ecology of means and ecology of ends. Question is whether we have devised adequate developmental programs that can match the increase in population. There is considerable scope for dematerialization and de-energisation without a decrease in living standards. manufacturing and marketing practices and get into technological world that it is less intensive in its use of materials and energy to be able to manage the environmental crisis. environmental concerns and social responsibilities vis-à-vis population regardless of time or location. We can save nature by using our resources more efficiently. Sustainablity should reflect equity. And such world has to desperately try to keep pace with the environmental problems because of such incorrect assumptions. consumption patterns. only after that the limitations of environments concerns posed by a carbon energy economy would get lessened. can be combated only if the world transits to a non-carbon energy economy. India’s population has crossed hundred crores mark. • Limits to Growth:
We will need to change attitudes. more production of wastes including greenhouse gases. The world needs an international mechanism that not only provides incentives to all nations to live within their entitled norms (amounts) but also help to promote a rapid transition to a non-carbon energy economy. Growth has been treated as an infinite variable. this much and not beyond it. This can only happen if principle of sufficiency is ignored. the number of cars and the power of cars also grew. it is not legitimate to ignore the equity occurring in the present populations in different parts of the globe. climate change (global warming).
Such increase however is based on high rate of consumption of natural resources of which depletion of environmental resources is significant. It is important to also achieve good rate of regeneration of natural resources. due consideration should be given to the fact that poor people directly depend upon natural
. However. Increase GNP indicates economic health of the country. that we have fixed our level of greed and no more. Therefore. there are significant advantages from the above transition. In our effort to increase the GNP. GNP must increase in these countries. High economic growth results into high rate of extraction. Long term ecological costs are to be taken into account. Running with high speed and with utmost efficiency and without direction. • Economy:
Rate o f Gross National Product (GNP) is one of the most important indicators of economic performance of any nation. we may not like to liquidate ecological assets. Developing countries have yet to undertake more developmental programs and yet to attain reasonable standards of living. transformation and utilization of non-renewable resources. Elements of resource generation and positive approach to environment have to be incorporated in developmental programs. Economic growth comes in conflict with issues of environmental concerns.66 supplemented by a sufficiency revolution. ecological disadvantages are required to be taken into account. It has to be a system that provides for the establishment of equitable entitlements or property rights to provide economic incentives to those who use this environment space in a sustainable manner and disincentives to those who use it in an unsustainable manner. The world faces an enormous challenge in the coming years. • Poverty:
In order to properly manage environment and resources. a separate set of policies would have to be adopted. For sustainable use of global common systems. Economic growth has to be environmentally sustainable. Global agreement is still a distant possibility. Ever since India had adopted the Economic Reforms Models via liberalization globalization. Economic growth can not take place without sustaining ecological costs.is really irrational. Sufficiency will be possible only if one day the world is prepared to reach an international agreement on limits to growth and to say.
Integrated approach is necessary for management of land. Promotion of sustainable land use management • Land Resources:
Land not only includes a physical entity in terms of topography but it also includes natural resources.
URBAN PROBLEMS RELATED TO ENERGY Cities are the main centers of economic growth. hunting or some cottage industry. A phenomenon known as urban sprawl. In developing countries too urban growth is very fast and in most of the cases it is uncontrollable and unplanned growth. It was some two hundred years ago with the dawn of industrial era the cities showed rapid development. sewage and solid waste 3. These components provide varieties of services are essential for life support system. Investment in infrastructure. innovations and employment. fishing. Promotion of sustainable energy and transport system 4. As a result there is spreading of the cities into the sub-urban or rural areas too. • Forests: There should be a rational approach adopted for management of forests and forests lands. production of forest products and forest services require institutional approach at government level. Land is infinite resource. Until recently a big majority of human population lived in rural areas and their economic activities centered around agriculture. minerals and biota. Now about 50% of the world population lives in urban areas and there is increasing movement of rural folk to cities in search of employment. commercial and residential facilities within a limited municipal boundary.water. rearing. • Human Settlement Issues:
The environmental implications of urban development and other human (slums) must be recognized. The human settlement program should concentrate on following aspects: 1. Providing shelter to all 2. In contrast to the rural set up. It will be necessary to give priority to the needs of urban as well as rural poor. soil. Sustainable development must address the issue of eradication of poverty which is linked with employment both of women and youth and other income generation programs. The urban growth is so fast that it is becoming difficult to accommodate all the industrial. Sustainable forest development. the urban
. trade. education. cattle.67 resources for their livelihood.
This can be achieved by using contour cultivation.68 set up is densely populated. the urban problems related to energy are much more magnified as compared to rural population. 4. Decreasing run-off losses: Huge water-loss occurs due to run-off on most of the soils. The energy requirement of urban population are much higher than that of rural ones. Transportation means including automobiles and public transport for moving from residence to workplace 3. Industrial plants using a big proportion of energy 5. consumes a lot of energy and materials and generates a lot of waste. Due to high population density and high energy demanding activities. In channeling. Residential and commercial lighting 2.
. small depressions are dug in the area so that there is temporary storage water. This is because urban people have a higher standard of life and their life style demands more energy inputs in every sphere of life. In lagoon leveling. terrace framing. c) Water spreading is done by channeling or lagoon-leveling. On gentle slopes trapped run off is spread over a large area for better infiltration. Control and prevention of air and water pollution which need energy dependent technologies. WATER CONSERVATION: Water being one of the most precious and indispensable resources needs to be conserved. b) Conservation-bench terracing: It involves construction of a series of benches for catching the run off water. 1. The following strategies can be adopted for conservation of water. a) Contour cultivation: on small furrows and ridges across the slopes trap rainwater and allow more time for infiltration. The energy demanding activities include. chemical treatment or improved water-storage system. which can be reduced by allowing most of the water to infiltrate into the soil. the water flow is controlled by a series of diversions with vertical intervals. water spreading. A large amount of waste generation which has to be disposed off properly using energy based techniques. 1. 6. Terracing constructed on deep soils have large water-storage capacity. Modern life-style using a large number of electrical gadgets in everyday life.
help in reducing run-off by allowing more time for water to penetrate into the land.Reducing irrigation losses: a) use of lined or covered canals to reduce seepage b) irrigation in early morning or late evening to reduce evaporation losses c) sprinkling irrigation and drip irrigation to conserve water by 30-50% d) growing hybrid crop varieties with less water requirements and tolerance to saline water help conserve water. This helps in economic use of water by the consumers. 2. Another useful conditioner is HPAN (hydrolyzed poyacrylonitrile) g) Water-storage structures like farm ponds. bath-tubs etc.Reuse of water: a) treated wastewater can be used for ferti-irrigation b) using grey water from washings. A co-polymer of starch and acrylonitrile called ‘super slumper’ has been reported to absorb water up to 1400 times its weight. By leaving the soil fallow for one season water can be made available for the crop grown in next season. Preventing wastage of water: This can be done in households. Horizontal barriers of asphalt placed below the soil surface increase water availability and increase crop yield by 35-40%. 6. 5. Storing water in soil: Storage of water takes place in the soil root zone in humid regions when the soil is wetted to field capacity. animal residues etc.2H2O) when applied to sodic soils improve soil permeability and reduce run off. 7. e) Surface crop residues. This is more effective on sandy soil but less effective on loamy sand soils. f) Chemical conditioners like gypsum (CaSO4. commercial buildings and public places. 4. build by individual farmers can be useful measures for conserving water through reduction of runoff. washing cars or paths help in saving fresh water. The chemical has been found to be useful for sandy soils. 3.69 d) Chemical wetting agents (Surfactants): These seem to increase the water intake rates when added to normal irrigated soil. a) Closing taps when not in use b) repairing any leakage from pipes c) using small capacity flush in toilets. mulch. Reducing evaporation losses: This is more relevant in humid regions. Increasing block pricing: The consumer has to pay a proportionately higher bill with higher use of water. for watering gardens.
. dug-outs etc. tillage.
70 RAINWATER HARVESTING: Rainwater harvesting is a technique of increasing the recharge of groundwater by capturing and storing rainwater. This is done by constructing special waterharvesting structures like dug wells, percolation pits, lagoons, check dams etc. Rainwater, wherever it falls, is captured and pollution of this water is prevented. Rainwater harvesting is not only proving useful for poor and scanty rainfall regions but also for the rich ones. The annual average rainfall in India is 1200 mm; however, in most places it is concentrated over the rainy season, from June to September. It is an astonishing fact that Cherapunji, the place receiving the second highest annual rainfall as 11000 mm still suffers from water scarcity. The water flows with run off and there is little vegetation to check the run off and allow infiltration. Till now there is hardly any rain-water harvesting being done in this region, thereby losing all the water that comes through rainfall. Rainwater harvesting has the following objectives: 1. To reduce run off loss 2. To avoid flooding of roads 3. To meet the increasing demands of water 4. To raise the water table by recharging ground water 5. To reduce ground water contamination 6. To supplement ground water supplies during lean seasons Rainwater can be mainly harvested by anyone of the following methods: 1. By storing in tanks or reservoirs above or below ground 2. By constructing pits, dug wells, lagoons, trench or check dams on small rivulets 3. By recharging the ground water. Before adopting a rainwater harvesting system, the soil characteristics, topography, rainfall pattern and climatic conditions should be understood. Traditional Rainwater Harvesting:
In India, it is an old practice in high rainfall areas to collect rainwater from roof tops into storage tanks. In foot-hills water flowing from springs are collected by embankment type water storage. In Himalayan foot-hills people use the hollow bamboos as pipelines to transport the water of natural springs. Rajasthan is known for its “Tankas” (underground tanks) and “Khadins” (Embankments) for harvesting rainwater. In our ancient times, we had adequate Taalaabs, Baawaris, Johars, Hauz etc. in every cities, village and capital cities of our Kings and Lords which were used to collect rainwater and ensure adequate water supply in dry periods. Modern Techniques of Rainwater Harvesting: In arid and semi-arid regions artificial ground water recharging is done by constructing shallow percolation tanks. Check-dams made of any suitable native material (brush, polls, rocks, plants, loose rocks, wire nets, stones, slabs, sacks etc.) are constructed for harvesting runoff from large catchment areas. Rajendrasingh of Rajasthan popularly known as “Waterman” has been doing a commendable job for harvesting rainwater by building check-dams in Rajasthan and he was honoured with the prestigious Megsaysay Award for his work. Ground water flow can be intercepted by building ground water dams or storing water underground. As compared to surface dams, ground water dams have several advantages like minimum evaporation loss, reduced chances of contamination etc. In roof top rainwater harvesting which is a low cost and effective technique for urban houses and buildings, the rainwater from the top of the roofs is diverted to some surface tank or pit through a delivery system which can be later used for several purposes. Also it can be used to recharge underground aquifers by diverting the stored water to some abandoned dug well or by using a hand pump. All the above techniques of rainwater harvesting are low cost methods with little maintenance expenses. Rainwater harvesting helps in recharging the aquifers, improves ground water quality by dilution, improves soil moisture and reduces soil erosion by minimizing run-off water. WATERSHED MANAGEMENT:
The land area drained by a river is known as the river basin. The watershed is defined as the land area from which water drains under gravity to a common drainage channel. Thus watershed is a delineated area with a well defined topographic boundary and one water outlet. The watershed can range from a few square kilometers to few thousand square kilometers in size. In the watershed
72 the hydrological conditions are such that water becomes concentrated within a particular location like a river or a reservoir, by which the watershed is drained. The watershed comprises complex interactions of soil, landform, vegetation, land use activities and water. People and animals are an integral part of a watershed having mutual impacts on each other. We may live anywhere we would be living in some watershed. A watershed affects as it is directly involved in sustained food production, water supply for irrigation, power generation, transportation as well as for influencing sedimentation and erosion, vegetation growth, floods and droughts. Thus management of watersheds treating them as a basic functional unit is extremely important and the first such Integrated Watershed Management was adopted in 1949 by the Damodar Valley Corporation. Watershed degradation: The watersheds are very often found to be degraded due to uncontrolled, unplanned and unscientific land use activities. Organizing, deforestation, mining, construction activities, industrialization, shifting cultivation, natural and artificial fires, soil erosion and ignorance of local people have been responsible for degradation of various watersheds. Objectives of Watershed Management: Rational utilization of land and water sources for optimum production causing minimum damage to the natural resources is known as watershed management. The objectives of watershed management are as follows: 1. To rehabilitate the watershed through proper land use adopting conservation strategies for minimizing soil erosion and moisture retention so as to ensure good productivity of the land for the farmers. 2. To manage the watershed for beneficial developmental activities like domestic water supply, irrigation, hydropower generation etc. 3. To minimize the risks of floods, droughts and land slides. 4. To develop rural areas in the region with clear plans for improving the economy of the regions. Watershed management practices: In the fifth year plan, watershed management approach was included with a number of programs for it and a national policy was developed. In watershed management the aspects of development are considered with regard to availability of the resources.
73 The practices of conservation and development of land and water are taken up with respect to their suitability for people’s benefit as well as sustainability. Water harvesting: Proper storage of water is done with provision for use in dry seasons in low rainfall areas. In high rainfall areas. The communities are to be motivated for protecting a freshly planted areas and maintaining a water harvesting structure implemented by the government or some external agency (NGO) independently or by involving the locale people. Contour trenching at an interval of one meter on overburdened dump. strip cropping etc. rapid erosion etc. afforestation and crop plantation play a very important role. Scientific mining and quarrying: Due to improper mining. contour cropping. Mechanical measures for reducing soil erosion and runoff losses: Several mechanical measures like terracing. 2. are used to minimize runoff and soil erosion particularly on the slopes of watersheds. They help to prevent soil erosion and retention of moisture. Afforestation and agro-forestry: In watershed development. Properly educating the people about the campaign and its benefits or sometimes paying certain incentives to them can help in effective people’s participation. People’s cooperation as well as participation has to be ensured for the same. bench terracing. Various measures taken up for management include the following: 1. no-till farming. Woody trees grown successfully in such agro-forestry programs include Sheesham. planting some soil binding plants land draining of water courses in the mined area are recommended for minimizing the destructive effects of mining in watershed areas. Successful watershed management has been done at Sukhomajri Panchkula. Public participation: People’s involvement including the farmers and tribals is the key to the success of any watershed management program. bunding. peak discharge and soil loss in Dehradun and Siwaliks 4. the hills lose stability and get disturbed resulting in landslides. Bunding has proved to be a very useful method in reducing runoff. Several anthropogenic activities accelerate its slope instability which need to be prevented and efforts should be made to project the watershed by preventing overgrazing. particularly the soil and water conservation. 5. woody trees are grown in between crops to substantially reduce the runoff and loss of fertile soil. 3. Teak and Keekar which have been used in watershed areas of river Yamuna. terracing and contour
. Watershed management in Himalayan region is of vial importance since most of the watersheds of our country lie there. Haryana through active participation of the local people. In Dehradun trees like Eucalyptus. It also helps in moderation of floods. Leucaena and grasses like chrysopogon are grown along with maize or wheat to achieve the objectives.
quite often. Hirakum Dam. A major portion of the forest is declared as core-area. which causes displacement of the native people. India is one of the countries in the world leading in big dam construction and in the last 50 years more than 20 million people are estimated to have directly or indirectly affected by these dams e. Developmental projects are planned to bring benefits to the society.three states people and many villages get affected. in the process of development. c) Displacement due to creation of National park: When some forests are covered under a National Park. these mines had displaced many people.
. where the entry of local dwellers or tribals is prohibited. underprivileged tribal people.movement called Chipko Movement. the native people of the project site are directly affected. Tehri Dam are the examples where many people and their villages in the vicinity got affected. as the socio economic and ecological base of the local community is disturbed. However. various mines are predominant in Jharkhand.74 farming to check runoff and erosion etc. Sometimes displacement of local people is due to accidents occurring in mined areas like subsidence of land that often leads to shifting people e. RESETTLEMENT AND REHABILITATION ISSUES: Problems and concerns: Economic development raises the quality and standard of living of the people of a country.g. Various types of projects result in the displacement of the native people who undergo tremendous economic and psychological distress. Several thousands of hectares of land area is covered in mining operation and the native people are displaced. It also resulted in movement lead by Sunderlal Bahuguna. However. Besides this.One more stir is currently on is Sardar Sarovar Project. b) Displacement due to mining: Mining is another developmental activity. it is a welcome step for conservation of the natural resources. it also has a social aspect associated with it which is often neglected. straw mulching tied with thin wires and ropes helps in establishing the vegetation and stabilizing the slopes. On steeper slopes with sliding faces.g. a) Displacement problems due to dams: The big river valley projects have one of the most serious socio-economic impacts due to large scale displacement of local people from their ancestral home and loss of their traditional profession or occupation. Bhakra Nangal Dam. they usually retaliate by starting destructive activities. These native people are generally the poorest of the poor. There is a need to look into their problems and provide them some employment. When these villagers are deprived of their ancestral right or access to forests. very often there is over-exploitation of natural resources and degradation of the environment.
Rehabilitation policy: There is a need for a comprehensive National Rehabilitation Policy. The age-long indigenous knowledge. it is individual-based resettlement. fauna. Displacement further increases their poverty due to loss of land. Thus the tribals lose their communitarian basis of economic and cultural existence. Even when they are resettled. social and cultural functions. Different states are following different practices in this regard. f) Loss of identity and loss of the intimate link between the people and the environment is one of the biggest loss. the government has the Land Acquisition Act.
. For this purpose. jobs. their uses etc. e) Kinship systems. c) The tribals are not familiar with the market policies and trends. The major issues related to displacement and rehabilitation are as follows: a) Tribals are usually the most affected amongst the displaced who are already poor. home. their folk-songs. Even if they get cash compensation. most of the displacements have resulted due to land acquisition by the government for various reasons.75 REHABILITATION ISSUES: The United Nations Universal Declaration on Human Rights has declared that right to housing is a basic human right. 1894 which empowers it to serve notice to the people to vacate their lands if there is a need as per government planning. d) The land acquisition laws ignore the communal ownership of property. gets lost. Provision of cash compensation in lieu of the land vacated exists in the Act. dances and activities vanish with their displacement. they get alienated in the modern economic set up. which totally ignores communal settlement. increased morbidity and mortality and social isolation. food insecurity. They feel like fish out of water. loss of access to common property assets. which is an inbuilt system amongst the tribals. which has been inherited and experienced by them about the flora. marriages. In India. b) Break up of families in an important social issue arising due to displacement in which the women are the worst affected and they are not even given cash/land compensation.
So. leading to a better environment and better future. economic growth and development without much botheration to care for the damage done to the planet earth. 3. If we think “Man is all powerful and the supreme creature on this earth and man is the master of nature and can harness it at his will”. Economic growth is very good and more the growth. 4. These two world-views are discussed in here in relation to environmental protection: a) Anthropocentric Worldview: This view is guiding most industrial societies. The guiding principles of this view are: 1. because it raises our quality of life and the potential for economic growth is unlimited. The first view urges us to march ahead gloriously to conquer the nature and establish our supremacy over nature through technological innovations. if we think “Nature has provided us with all the resources for leading a beautiful life and she nourishes us like a mother. A healthy environment depends upon a healthy economy. principles and guidelines relating to human interactions with their environment.76 There is a need to raise public awareness on these issues to bring the resettlement and rehabilitation plans on a humane footing and to honour the human rights of the oustees. this is an earth-centric thinking. like any other creation of Nature and live sustainably. would transform our deeds. Man is considered to be most capable for managing the planet earth.’ It all depends on how do we think and act. we can see that our acts will follow what we think. It is rightly said.
. If we want to check the environmental crisis. The second view urges us to live on this earth as a part of it. it reflects our human-centric thinking. we should respect her and nurture her”. On the other hand. It puts human beings in the center giving them the highest status. we will have to transform our thinking and attitude. 2. the better it is. Earth has an unlimited supply of resources and it all belongs to us. Man is the planet’s most important species and is in the in-charge of the rest of the nature. ENVIRONMENTAL ETHICS: Environmental ethics refers to the issues. That in turn. “The environmental crisis is an outward manifestation of the crisis of mind and spirit.
The success of mankind depends upon how good managers we are for deriving benefits for us from nature. A healthy economy depends upon a healthy environment. Some important ethical guidelines known as Earth ethics or Environmental Ethics are as follows: • • One should love and honour the earth since it has blessed you with life and governs your survival. 2. Environmental ethics can provide us the guidelines for putting our beliefs into action and help us decide what to do when faced with crucial situations. The success of mankind depends upon how best we can cooperate with the rest of the nature while trying to use the resources of nature for our benefit. One should keep each day sacred to earth and celebrate the turning of its seasons. One should be grateful to the plants and animals which nourish you by giving you food. The basic beliefs are as follows: 1. Nature exists not for human beings alone. Economic growth is good till it encourages earth-sustaining development and discourages earth-degrading development. 4. b) Eco-centric Worldview: This is based on earth-wisdom. One should not waste your resources on destructive weapons. One should not hold yourself above other living things and have no right to drive them to extinction.
• • • • • •
. but for all the species. One should not conceal from others the effects you have caused by your actions on earth. One should not run after gains at the cost of nature rather should strive to restore its damaged majesty. The earth resources are limited and they do not belong only to human beings. 3. One should limit your offsprings because too many people will overburden the earth. 5.77 5.
One should not steal from future generations their right to live in a clean and safe planet by impoverishing or polluting it. One should consume the material goods in moderate amounts so that all may share the earth’s precious treasure of resources. Even the various festivals envisaged by Hinduism also prescribe the participation of humans in the celebrations through nature. Satyanarayana Pooja. It has experienced several glacial and interglacial periods. Vatapournitma. The Intergovernmental Panel On Climate Change (IPCC) in 1990 and 1992 published best available evidence about past climate change. However. Our religious and cultural rituals make us perform such actions that would help in the conservation of nature and natural resources. We have relatively stable climate for thousands of years due to which we have practiced agriculture and increased population. Green house
. the green house effect and recent changes in global temperature. seasonal variations and extremes of weather in region. Our Vedas also have glorified each every component of nature as gods or goddesses so that people have a feeling of reverence for them. during the past 10000 years of the current interglacial period.
If we critically go through the above ten commandments for earth ethics and reflect upon the same we will find that various religions teach us the same things in one form or the other. CLIMATE CHANGE: Climate is the average weather of an area. Anthropogenic activities are upsetting the delicate balance that has been established between various components of the environment. Even small changes in climatic conditions may disturb agriculture that would lead to migration of animals including humans. Such conditions which average over a long period at least 30 years is called climate. Dassara etc. It is the general weather conditions. Baishakhi. Ganesh Festival.) The concept of Ahimsa in Buddhism and Jainism ensure the protection and conservation of all forms of life.51˚ c over 100 to 200 year period. (Nisarga Pooja is what we perform during celebrations of our festivals e. the mean average temperature has fluctuated by 0. Our teachings on “having fewer wants” ensure to put “limits to growth” and thus guide us to have an eco-centric life style.g. It is observed that earth’s temperature has changed considerably during the geological times. thereby keeping the ecological balance of the earth intact.
The average global temperature is 15˚c. famines and death of humans as well as livestock. Some areas will become inhabitable because of droughts or floods following rise in average sea level. nitrous oxide etc. While the levels of water vapour in the troposphere have relatively remained constant the levels of carbon dioxide have increased. Therefore. The amount of heat trapped in the atmosphere depends mostly upon the concentration of heat trapping or green house gases and length of time they stay in the atmosphere. result in floods and droughts in different regions of the world. In the absence of green house gases this temperature would have been 18˚ c. ozone. Heat trapped by green house gases in the atmosphere keeps the planet warm enough to allow us and other species to exist. changes in agricultural productivity. This effect is called Green House Effect as it is similar to the warming effect observed in the horticultural Green House made of glass. and water vapours. Warming or cooling by more than 2˚ c over the past few decades may prove to be disastrous for various ecosystems on the earth including humans as it would alter the conditions faster than some species could adapt or migrate.79 gases are increasing in atmosphere resulting in increase in the average global temperature. Other gases whose levels have increased due to human activities are methane.
GREEN HOUSE GASES:
. greenhouse effect contributes a temperature rise to the tune of 33˚ c. The major green house gases are carbon dioxide. nitrous oxide. The two predominant green house gases are water vapours which are controlled by hydrological cycle and carbon dioxide which is controlled mostly by the global carbon cycle. Deforestation has further resulted in elevated levels of carbon dioxide due to non removal of carbon dioxide by plants through photosynthesis. the lower most layer of the atmosphere traps heat by natural process due to the presence of certain gases. methane. This may upset the hydrological cycle. cause sea level rise.
GLOBAL WARMING: Troposphere.
The phenomenon is referred to as the enhanced green house effect to distinguish its effect from the one that has been operating naturally for millennia.5 ˚ c by 2050 if input of greenhouse gases continues to rise at the present rate. This will also disturb many commercially important spawning grounds.
. filariasis. by the sea level rise who have build homes in the deltas of Ganges. 1. Rise in Sea Level: With the increase in global temperature sea water will expand. Current models indicate that an increase in the average atmospheric temperature of 3˚ c would raise the average global sea level by 0. The green house gases include Carbon dioxide. the Mekong. and would probably increase the frequency of storm damage to lagoons. the Nile. Hamburg and Venice as well as agricultural lowlands and deltas in Egypt. the Yangtze and the Mississippi rivers. 3. Effects on human health: The global warming will lead to changes in the rainfall pattern in many areas.2-1. Even at the lower value. Cairo. In India. These are the green house gases present in the troposphere and resulting in an increase in the temperature of air and the earth. India. 2. thereby affecting the distribution of vector-borne diseases like malaria. Life of millions of people will be affected. One meter rise in sea level will inundate low lying areas of cities like Shanghai.5 to 5.5 meters over the next 50-100 years. Chlorofluorocarbons.80 The phenomenon that worries the environmental scientists is that due to anthropogenic activities there is an increase in the concentration of the green house gases in the air that absorbs infra-red light containing heat and results in the re-radiation of even more of the outgoing thermal infra-red energy. the Lakshadweep Islands with a maximum height of 4 meters above the level may be vulnerable. Bangkok. thereby increasing the average surface temperature beyond 15˚ c. Bangladesh. China and will affect rice productivity. Sydney. elephantiasis etc. Some of the most beautiful cities like Mumbai may be saved by heavy investment on embankment to prevent inundation. methane and nitrous oxide etc. earth would be warmer that it has been for 10000 years. Global temperature increase: It is estimated that the earth’s mean temperature will rise between 1. estuaries and coral reefs. Heating will melt the polar ice sheets and glaciers resulting in further rise in sea level. Impacts of enhanced green house effect: The enhanced greenhouse effect will not only cause global warming but will also affect various other climatic and natural processes.
8. which are the vectors of such diseases.81
Areas which are presently free from diseases like malaria may become the breeding grounds for the vectors of such diseases. Cut down the current rate of use of CFCs and fossil fuel. Tropical and subtropical regions will be more affected since the average temperature in these regions is already on the higher side. Adopt sustainable agriculture 9. Increase in nuclear power plants for electricity production 5. heat resistant and pest resistant varieties of crops have to be developed. Kenya and Indonesia. Increase in temperature and humidity will increase pest growth like the growth of vectors for various diseases. snails and some insects. Stabilize population growth
. Use energy more efficiently 3. Shift from coal to natural gas 6. Pests will adapt to such changes better than the crops. Warmer temperature and more water stagnation would favour breeding of mosquitoes. It may show positive or negative effects on various types of crops in different regions of the world. Shift to renewable energy resources 4. which may drastically affect wheat and maize production. The areas likely to be affected in this manner are Ethiopia. To cope up with the changing situation drought resistant. Soil moisture will decrease and evapo-transpiration will increase. Effects on Agriculture: There are different views regarding the effect of global warming on agriculture. Even a rise of 2˚ c may be quite harmful to crops. Reduce beef production. 4. 2. Trap and use methane as a fuel 7. Higher temperature and humidity will increase/aggravate respiratory and skin diseases. Measures to check global warming: To slow down enhanced global warming the following steps will be important: 1.
Remove atmospheric carbon dioxide by utilizing photosynthetic algae. Efficiently remove carbon dioxide from smoke stacks 11. Effects of acid rain: Acid rain causes a number of harmful effects below pH 5. 12. monuments like Taj Mahal. The effects are visible in the aquatic even at pH less than 5. Rain water is turned acidic when its pH falls below 5. 3.6 at 20˚ c because of formation of carbonic acid due to dissolution of CO2 in water. 2. Acidic decomposition is the total wet acidic deposition (acid rain) and dry deposition. Aquatic life especially fish are badly affected by lake acidification.6.82
10. soil and other materials. Priceless stone statues in Greece and Italy have been partially dissolved by acid rain. It damages metals and car finishes. 4.g. Hydrogen chloride emission forms hydrochloric acid. Acid forming gases like oxides of sulphur and nitrogen and acid aerosols get deposited on the surface of water bodies. In fact clean or natural rain water has a pH of 5. In absence of rain. In the atmosphere these gases are ultimately converted into sulfuric and nitric acids. Acid forming gases are oxidized over several days by which time they travel several thousand kilometers. ACID RAIN Oxides of sulfur and nitrogen originating from industrial operations and fossil fuel combustion are the major sources of acid forming gases. Plant more trees. Crystals of calcium and magnesium sulphate are formed as a result of corrosion caused by acid rain. It damages stone statues.1. On moist surfaces or in liquids these acid forming gases can dissolve an form acids similar to that formed in acid rain. Acid rain is only one component of acidic deposition. These acids cause acidic rain. vegetation.5. It causes deterioration of buildings especially made of marble e. dry deposition of acid may occur.
9. snow-covered lands. barren hill-ridge etc. 6. 2. thus indicating the seriousness of the problem for a country like ours which has to support 1/6th of the world’s population. Control of Acid Rain: 1. It damages foliage and weakens trees. In Harayana the wastelands cover about 8.
. Snow covered areas. Norway. Emission of SO2 and NO2 from industries and power plants should be reduced by using pollution control equipments. and killing of fish. sodic or sandy land areas. Canada have become fishless due to acid rain. sandy areas. and Andhra Pradesh. It results in reproductive failure. undulating uplands. Liming of lakes and soils should be done to correct the adverse effects of acid rain. gullied areas. zinc and lead which leak from the surrounding rocks due to acid rain.4% of the total land area and most of it comprises saline. saline or waterlogged lands. Many insects and fungi are more tolerant to acidic conditions and hence they can attack the susceptible trees and cause diseases. Wastelands are formed by natural processes. glacial areas and areas rendered barren after Jhum cultivation are also included in wastelands. mercury. which include undulating uplands.83 5. 7. drought. Aquatic animals suffer from toxicity of metals such as aluminium. Maximum wasteland areas in our country lie Rajasthan (36 million ha) followed by M. or by anthropogenic (man-made) activities leading to eroded. 3. It makes trees more susceptible to stresses like cold temperature. manganese. More than half of our country’s geographical area (about 175 million ha) is estimated to be wasteland. A coating of protective layer of inert polymer should be given in the interior of water pipes for drinking water. sandy areas etc. 8. WASTELAND RECLAMATION Economically unproductive lands suffering from environmental deterioration are known as wastelands. The wastelands include salt-affected lands. coastal saline areas. etc.P. Many lakes of Sweden.
Constitutional Provisions: The provisions for environmental protection in the constitution were made through the 42nd amendment as follows: Article 48-A of the constitution provides: “The state shall endeavour to protect and improve the environment and to safeguard forests and wildlife of the country. Soon after the conference our country took substantive legislative steps for environmental protection. 1986. The Wildlife (Protection) Act was passed in 1972. followed by the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act.” Article 51A (g) provides: “It shall be the duty of the every citizen of India to protect and improve the natural environment including forests.84 Wasteland Reclamation Practices: Wasteland reclamation and development in our country falls under the purview of Wasteland Development Board.” Thus our constitution includes environmental protection and conservation as one of our fundamental duties. To prevent soil erosion. 1980. which works to fulfill following objectives: 1. On 5th June. environment was first discussed as an item of international agenda in the U. Conference on Human Environment in Stockholm and thereafter 5th June is celebrated all over the world as World Environment Day. flooding and landslides 4. rivers and wildlife and to have compassion for living creatures. 1974. the Forest (Conservation) Act. Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act. To improve the availability of good quality water for irrigating these lands 3. 1981 and subsequently the Environment (Protection) Act.N. To improve the physical structure and quality of marginal soils 2. 1972. To conserve the biological resources of land for sustainable use ENVIRONMENTAL LEGISLATIONS India is the first country in the world to have made provisions for the protection and conservation of environment in its constitution. lakes. Some of the important Acts passed by the Government of India are discussed as follows:
Wildlife Sanctuaries etc. the act is adopted all over India. The Act provides for the constitution of Central Zoo Authority. 7. The Act is adopted by all states in India except J & K. Tiger (1973). 3. duties etc. Some of the major drawbacks of the Act include mild penalty to offenders. 1980 This act deals with the conservation of forests and related aspects.
FOREST (CONSERVATION) ACT. 6. 9. It provides for the appointment of wildlife advisory Board. The Act provides for setting up of National Parks. It defines the wild-life related terminology. 5. Crocodile (1974) and Brown antlered Deer (1981) were stated under this Act. 4. The act imposes a ban on the trade or commerce in scheduled animals.85 WILDLIFE (PROTECTION) ACT. Except J & K. Under the Act. It provides for captive breeding programme for endangered species. pitiable condition of wildlife in mobile zoos and little emphasis on protection of plant genetic resources. 10. personal ownership certificate for animal articles like tiger and leopard skins. 8. It provides for legal powers to officers and punishment to offenders. possession. no coverage of foreign endangered wildlife. transfer etc. There is provision for trade and commerce in some wildlife species with license for sale. their powers. illegal wild life trade in J & K. 1972 The major activities and provisions in the act can be summed up as follows: 1. Protection to some endangered plants. comprehensive listing of endangered wild life species was done for the first time and prohibition of hunting of the endangered species was mentioned. which has it own Act. Several Conservation Projects for individual endangered species like Lion (1972). The Act covers under it all types of forests
. 2. Wildlife warden.
. for which prior approval of the Center is necessary. Wildlife sanctuaries. some construction work in the forest for wildlife or forest management is exempted from non-forest activity (e. 3.) 1992 Amendment in the Forest Act 1. seismic surveys. This is because newly introduced species in the forest area may cause an imbalance in the ecology of the forest. exploration. oil-yielding plants or plants of medicinal value in forest area need to be first approved by the Central Government.g. However. check posts. In 1992. The State Government has been empowered under this Act to use the forests only for forestry purposes. Non-forest activities include clearing of forest land for cultivation of any type of plants/crops or any other purpose (except re-afforestation). drilling and hydroelectric projects. 2. rubber and plants which are cash-crops. Even cultivation of fruit-bearing trees. fencing. trench. If at all it wants to use it in any other way. then no prior clearance is required. are totally prohibited for any exploration or survey under this Act without prior approval of Central Government even if no tree-felling is involved. 3. Any illegal non-forest activity within a forest area can be immediately stopped under this Act. it has to take prior approval of Central Government. after which it can pass orders for declaring some part of reserve forest for non-forest purposes (e.86 including reserved forests. These activities are setting of transmission lines. protected forests or any forested land irrespective of its ownership. pipelines. The last activity involves large scale destruction of forest. mining) or for clearing some naturally growing trees and replacing them by economically important trees (reforestation). The salient features of the Act are as follows: 1. making water-holes. coffee. It makes provision for conservation of all types of forests and for this purpose there is any Advisory committee which recommends funding for it to the Central Government. Cultivation of tea. 4. 2. without cutting trees or limited cutting with prior approval of Central Government. are included under non-forestry activity and not allowed in reserve forests. National Parks etc. some amendment was made in the Act which made provisions for allowing some non-forest activities in forests. If the species to be planted is a native species. wireless communication etc.
Godavarman Thirumulkpad Vs. The reason is same as described above. bajri. Plantation of mulberry for rearing silkworm is considered a non-forest activity. 1974 It provides for maintaining restoring the wholesomeness of water by preventing and controlling its pollution. 6. the Forests (Conservation) Act has made ample provisions for conservation and protection of forests and prevents deforestation. Union of India (1997) directed all on-going mining activity to be ceased immediately in any forest area of India if it not got prior approval of Central Government.87
5. from river-beds located within the forest area fall under non-forest activity. or such alteration of the physical. Any proposal sent to central government for non-forest activity must have a cost-benefit analysis and Environmental Impact statement (EIS) of the proposed activity with reference to its ecological and socio-economic impacts. Pollution is defined as such contamination of water. Removal of stones. 7.
. The Supreme Court in a case T. This is done in order to discourage monoculture practices in the forests which are otherwise rich in biodiversity. Thus. The definition of water pollution has thus encompassed the entire probable agents in water that may cause any harm or have a potential to harm any kind of in any way. The salient features and provisions of the Act are summed up as follows: 1. It provides for maintenance and restoration of quality of all types of surface and ground water. boulder etc.N. Tusser cultivation (a type of silk-yielding insect) in forest areas by tribals as a means of their livelihood is treated as a forestry activity as long as it does not involve some specific host tree like Asan or Arjun. 8. 9. WATER (PREVENTION AND CONTROL OF POLLUTION) ACT. chemical or biological properties of water or such discharge as is likely to cause a nuisance or render the water harmful or injurious to public health and safety or harmful for any other use or to aquatic plants and other organisms or animal life. Mining is a non-forestry activity and prior approval of Central Government is mandatory.
Lay down standards for water quality parameters. 8. It confers them with powers and functions to control pollution. The main regulatory bodies are the Pollution Control Boards. Prepare manuals for treatment and disposal of sewage and trade effluents. 7. 5. The Act has provisions for funds. It provides for the establishment of Central and State Boards for pollution control. Coordinate the activities of State Pollution Control Boards and provides them technical assistance and guidance. Plan nation-wide programs for prevention. coordinate and provide technical assistance for prevention and control of pollution of water. Organize comprehensive programs on pollution related issues through mass media.
. 3. 3. accounts and audit of the Central and State Pollution Control Boards. 4. sewage or trade effluent sample. control or abatement of pollution. 2. Advise the central government in matters related to prevention and control of water pollution. conferred the following duties and powers: Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB): The board is supposed to: 1. 6. 9.88 2. budgets. The Central and State Pollution Control Boards are widely represented and are given comprehensive powers to advise. The Act makes provisions for various penalties for the defaulters and procedure for the same. Collect and compile and publish technical and statistical data related to pollution. Establish and recognize laboratories for analysis of water. Organize training programs for prevention and control of pollution. 4. which have been. 5.
89 The State Pollution Control Boards also have similar functions to be executed at state level and are governed by the directions of CPCB. 1. The board advises the state government with respect to the location of any industry that might pollute a stream or well. 2. It lays down standards for effluents and is empowered to take samples from any stream, well or trade effluent or sewage passing through an industry. 3. The State Board is empowered to take legal samples of trade effluent in accordance with the procedure laid down in the Act, The sample taken in the presence of the occupier or his agent is divided into two parts, sealed, signed by both the parties and sent for analysis to some recognized lab. If the samples do not conform to the prescribed water quality standards (crossing maximum permissible limits), then ‘consent’ is refused to the unit. 4. Every industry has to obtain consent from the Board (granted for a fixed duration) by applying on a prescribed Proforma providing all technical details, along with a prescribed fee following which analysis of the effluent is carried out. 5. The Board suggests efficient methods of utilization, treatment and disposal of trade effluents. The Act has made detailed provisions regarding the power of the Boards to obtain information, take trade samples, restrict new outlets, restrict expansion, enter and inspect the units and sanction or refuse consent to the industry after effluent analysis. While development is necessary it is all the more important to prevent pollution which can jeopardize the lives of people. Installation and proper functioning of effluent treatment plants in all polluting industries is a must for checking pollution of water and land. Despite certain weaknesses in the Act, the Water Act has ample provisions for preventing and controlling water pollution through legal measures. THE AIR (PREVENTION AND CONTROL OF POLLUTION) ACT, 1981 Salient features of the act are as follows: 1. It provides for prevention control and abatement of air pollution. 2. Air pollution has been defined as the presence of any solid, liquid or gaseous substance (including noise) in the atmosphere in such concentration as may be or tend to be harmful to human beings or any other living creatures or plants or property or environment.
3. Noise pollution has been inserted as pollution in the Act in 1987. 4. Pollution control boards at the central or state level have the regulatory authority to implement the Air Act. Just parallel to the functions related to Water (Prevention and control of pollution) Act, the boards perform similar to functions related to improvement of air quality. The boards have to check whether or not the industry strictly follows the norms or standards laid down by the board under section 17 regarding the discharge of emission of any air pollutant. Based upon analysis report, consent is granted or refused to the industry. 5. Just like the Water Act, the Air Act has provisions for defining the constitution, power and function of Pollution Control Boards, funds, accounts, audit, penalties and procedures. 6. Section 20 of the Act has provision for insuring emission standards for automobiles. Based upon it the state government is empowered to issue instructions to the authorities in charge of registration of motor vehicles (under Motor Vehicle Act, 1939) that is bound to comply with such instructions. 7. As per section 19 in consultation with the state pollution control board the state government may declare an area within the state as “Air Pollution Control Area” and can prohibit the use of any fuel other than approved fuel in the area causing air pollution. No person shall without prior consent of State Board operate or establish any industrial unit in the “Air Pollution Control Area”. The Water and Air Acts have also made special provisions for appeals. Under Section 28 of Water Act and Section 31 of Air Act, a provision for appeals has been made. An appellate authority consisting of a single person or three persons appointed by the head of the State, Governor is constituted to hear such appeals as filed by some aggrieved parties due to some order made by the State Board within 30 days of passing the orders. The Appellate Authority after giving the appellant and the State Board, an opportunity of being heard, disposes off the appeal as expeditiously as possible.
THE ENVIRONMENT (PROTECTION) ACT, 1986
91 The Act came into force on November 19, 1986. The Act extends to whole of India. Some terms related to environment have been described as follows in the Act: 1. Environment includes water, air and land and the interrelationship that exist among and between them and human beings, all other living organisms and property. 2. The environmental pollution means the presence of any solid, liquid or gases substance present in such concentration as may be or tend to be injurious to environment. 3. Hazardous substance means any substance or preparation which by its physico-chemical properties or handling is liable to cause harm to human beings, other living organisms, property or environment. The Act has given powers to the central government to take measures to protect and improve environment while the state government coordinate the actions. The most important function of central government under this act includes: Setting up of a) The standards of quality of air, water or soil for various areas and purposes. b) The maximum permissible limits of concentration of various environmental pollutants for different areas. c) The procedures and safeguards for the handling of hazardous substances. d) The prohibition and restrictions on the handling of hazardous substances in different areas. e) The prohibition and restriction on the location of the industries and to carry on process and operations in different areas. f) The procedures and safeguards for the prevention of accidents which may cause environmental pollution and providing for remedial measures for such accidents. The power of entry and inspection, power to take sample etc. under this act lies with the Central Government or any officer empowered by it. For the purpose of protecting and improving the quality of the environment and preventing and abating pollution, standards have been specified under Schedule I-IV of Environment (Protection) Rules 1986 for emission of gaseous pollutants and discharge of effluents/waste water from industries.
Off late. pollution etc. There is greater consideration of economic gains and issues related to eliminating poverty by providing employment that overshadows the basic environmental issues. Issues related to environment have been often been branded as anti-development. ENFORCEMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL LEGISLATION: MAJOR ISSUES We have seen that there are a number of important environmental laws in the form of Acts for safeguarding our environmental quality. some awareness has taken place related to environmental degradation. The rivers have been turned into open sewers in many places and the air in our big cities is badly polluted. Our planners. The status of environment shows that there are drawback in environmental legislations and problems in their effective implementation. decision-makers. Still we are losing our Wild Life. Development has paved the path for rise in the levels or standards of living but it has simultaneously led to serious environmental disasters. but incomplete knowledge information and ignorance about many aspects has often led to misconceptions. 4. 3. have so far failed to integrate the knowledge in environmental aspects as an essential component of the curriculum. But in spite of these acts we find that we are not able to achieve the target of bringing 33% of our land cover under forests. The wisdom lies in maintaining a balance between our needs and supplies so that the delicate ecological balance is not disrupted. PUBLIC ENVIRONMENTAL AWARENESS: Public awareness about environment is at a stage of infancy. 2. economics etc.
. In a zeal to go ahead with some ambitious development projects.92
These standard vary from industry to industry and also vary with the medium into which the effluent is discharged or the area of emission. Some of the main reasons responsible for widespread environmental ignorance can be detailed below: 1. Our courses in Science. quite often there is a purposeful concealment of information about environmental aspects. technology. politicians and administrators have not been trained so as to consider the environmental aspects associated with their plans.
3. They can act both as an action group or a pressure group. the World Wide Fund for NatureIndia (WWF-India). These studies are now being incorporated at all stages in schools.93 Methods to Propagate Environmental Awareness There is immense need for Environmental awareness. decision makers and leaders: It is very important to give these classes of people necessary orientation and training through specially organized workshops and training programs. TV serials etc. It is to be created through formal and informal education to all sections of the society. 2.
. Various stages and methods that can be useful for raising environmental awareness in different sections of the society are given below: 1. This will appeal all age groups at the same time. street plays. rallies. The recent report by CSE on more than permissible limits of pesticides in the cola drinks sensitized the people all over the country. colleges as per the directives of the Supreme Court. The Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS). They can act as effective and viable link between the two. The Chipko movement for conservation of trees by Dasholi Gram Swarajya Mandal in Gopeshwar or the “Narmada Bachao Andolan organized by Kalpvariksh are some of the instances where NGOs have played a landmark role in the society for conservation of environment. Among students through education: Such education should be imparted to the students right from the childhood age. Among the planners. campaigns. They can be very effective organizing public movements for the protection of environment through creation of awareness. Everyone needs to understand it because ‘environment belongs to all’ and ‘every individual matters’ when it comes to conservation and protection of environment. Among the masses through mass-media: Media can play an important role to educate the masses through articles. Center for Science and Environment (CSE) and many others are playing a significant role in creating environmental awareness through research as well as extension work.
ROLE OF NON-GOVERNMENT ORGANIZATIONS (NGOs) : Voluntary organizations can help by advising the government about some local environmental issues and at the same time interacting at the grass-root levels. Kerala Sastra Sahitya Parishad.
4. 10.94 Before we can all take up the task of environmental protection and conservation. What is rainwater harvesting? What are the purposes served by it? 5.” Questions: 1. What is a watershed? Critically discuss the objectives and practices of watershed management. 12. we have to be environmentally educated and aware.
. Discuss the measures to conserve water. What do we mean by “Environmental Refugees” or “outs tees”? What are the major causes for displacement of native tribal people? Discuss with examples. Discuss salient features of various environmental legislations. 7. 11. Write an essay on Acid Rain. What are greenhouse gases and greenhouse effects? How do they contribute to the global warming? 9. It can therefore said “If you want to act green. 8. Discuss various measures for Wasteland reclamation. Write notes on various authorities established by various laws for prevention and control of environmental pollution. What do you understand by sustainable development? What are the major measures to attain sustainability? 2. first think green. Why is urban requirement of energy more than rural requirement? 3. 13. What are the major issues and problems related to rehabilitation of the displaced tribals? Discuss with examples. 6. Discuss the major implications of enhanced global warming.
HIV/AIDS. In agriculture based societies children were considered as economic assets who would help the parents in the fields and that is why in the developing countries. We have already crossed 6 billion and may reach 11 billion by 2045 as per the World Bank estimates. The dramatic way in which global human population grew is really alarming. population growth climbed to unthought-of heights. Women and Child Welfare. With scientific and technological advancement.95
Human Pollution and the Environment
Human Pollution and the Environment: Population growth. variation among nations. the earth was home to about 1 billion people. POPULATION EXPLOSION:
. Environment and human health. Human rights. Objectives: • To understand the impact of pollution growth on the environment • To learn about various governmental initiatives for human health. value education and overall welfare
The population of the earth has always been a critical question unanswered for decades and hundreds of years. experienced large scale mortality due to bubonic plague when about 50% of people in Asia and Europe died due to the disease. population was quite stable. case studies. population explosion-family welfare program. It is amazing to note that it took about 39000 years of human history to reach 1 billion and 130 years to reach the second billion and 45 years to reach 4 billion. This trend of human population growth has definite reasons. Droughts and outbreak of diseases used to be quite common leading to mass deaths. human rights. Role of Information Technology in Environment and human health. Victory over famine-related deaths and infant mortality became instrumental for a rapid increase in population size. And it might take a span of few decades to double the same. Environmental conditions were hostile and humans had not yet developed adequate artificial means for adaptations to these stresses. Value Education. at the rate of 3-4% per year. People started living in definite settlements leading a more stable life with better sanitation. The 14th Century A.D. food and medical facilities. accounting for about 90-95% of total population growth of the world in the last 50 years. In the beginning of human civilization. In 1800. during the Stone Age. life expectancy of humans improved.
the ecological life-support systems are getting jeopardized. are limited and due to over exploitation these resources are getting exhausted. so to say adding a new Mexico every year. minerals etc. This is unprecedented growth of human population at an alarming rate is referred to as population explosion. Even many of the renewable resources like forests. Our resources like land. on average 4-5 children are born and 2 people die. This means that every hour we are growing by about 9000 and everyday by about 214000. water. There is a fierce debate on this issue as to whether we should immediately reduce fertility rates through world wide birth control programs in order to stabilize or even shrink the population or whether human beings will devise new technologies for alternate resources. it will have 1. The Population Clock: Every second. The Indian scenario: India is the second most populous country of the world with 1 billion people. Industrial and economic growth are raising our quality of life but adding toxic pollutants into the air. housing. so that the problem of crossing the carrying capacity of the earth will never actually come. educating and employing all those people being added every year? If we look at the population statistics of our country we find that in just 35 years after independence we added another India in terms of population. Do we have the resources and provisions for feeding. Population explosion is causing severe resource depletion and environmental degradation. in just 40 years the population crossed 5 billion mark with current addition about 92 million every year. water and soil. In the 20th Century. are under tremendous pressure. the world population was 6. thus resulting in net gain of nearly 2.96
There has been a dramatic reduction in the doubling time of the global human population. grasslands etc. If the current growth rates continue. human population has grown much faster than ever before. As a result.63 billion people by 2050 and will become the most populous country surpassing China. Between 1950-90. On 11th May 2000 we became 1 Billion and now we can say that every 6th person in this world is an Indian. There are two important views on population growth which we need to understand:
.5 person every second. In the year 2000. So we are heading for very serious ramifications of the population explosion problem.3 billion and it is predicted to grow four times in next 100 years. fossil fuels. as we have already discussed.
FAMILY PLANNING: Family planning allows couples to decide their family size and also the time spacing of their offspring. A compromise between the two views is required because all these factors seem to be interdependent and interrelated. human populations tend to grow at an exponential or compound rate whereas food production increases very slowly or remains stable. 2. disease outbreak and violence as well as “preventive checks” like birth control need to stabilize population growth. causes over population. Equity and social justice to all. surgical methods. It is not precisely known as to how long we can continue our exponential growth in population and resource use without suffering overshoot or dieback. Modern science has provided several birth control techniques including mechanical barriers. FAMILY WELFARE PROGRAMMES Population explosion is like a time bomb that must be diffused well in time. The population must be kept much below the carrying capacity and stabilized. Therefore. More than a hundred contraceptive methods are on trial. A catastrophic doomsday model warns us that the earth cannot sustain more than two more doublings i. Almost every culture in the past used to practice some traditional fertility control methods through some traditions.97 1. He believes “positive checks” like famines. starvation. disease. the increasing population is going to deplete all the resources beyond their regeneration capacity. allowing everyone to enjoy good standard of living is the need of the hour that can voluntarily help in achieving a stabilized global population. resource depletion. He believed that social exploitation and oppression of the less privileged people leads to poverty. chemical pills and physical barriers to implantation. Malthusian Theory: According to Malthus. population growth is a symptom rather the cause of poverty. 25 billion. environmental degradation that in turn. Marxian Theory: According to Karl Marx.e. pollution and other social ills. Many of these countries include abortion as part of the population control programme which very often encourages female infanticide thereby disturbing the optimal
. poverty. overcrowding. The United Nations Family Planning Agency provides funds to 135 countries. crime and misery are invariably associated with population explosion. We are getting warning signals that if not controlled. taboos and folk medicine. unemployment. so that the aftermath of explosion could be avoided.
Still some 300 million couples do not have access to family planning. the government raised the legal minimum age of marriage from 18 to 21 for men and 15 to 18 years for women.
ENVIRONMENT AND HUMAN HEALTH:
Health is “a state of complete physical. Bihar and UP have shown increase in their growth rates (more than 2. the population has been stabilized with a focus on social justice as already discussed. Chemical factors
.” Health is influenced by many factors such as: 1. Even in 1981 census no drop in population growth was observed. Successful family planning programs need significant societal changes including social. The Indian Context: India started the family planning programme in 1952 while its population was nearly 400 million. housing. In contrast. The birth control programmes have often faced strong opposition from religious groups. forced family planning campaign by the Government resulted in a turmoil all over the country. Since then funding for family planning programmes has been increased further. In 1970’s. but it has been done with a different approach. political stability. mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. wells and subsidized loans. Andhra Pradesh has also just achieved the target of ZPG in 2001. proper awareness and confidence building along with accessibility and effectivity of the birth control measures.5%). social security. educational and economic status for women. the state governments in 2000 were allowed to adopt their own approach. The poor class was encouraged to be sterilized after two children by paying cash incentives. Nonetheless. better land. Unable to reach a consensus regarding population policy. World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that today about 50 percent of the world’s married couples adopt some family planning measures as compared to just 10% about 30 years back.98 male: female ratio in a society. It is now comparable to many industrialized nations including USA and it has proved that wealth is not a pre-requisite for zero population growth. In Kerala. In 1978. Nutritional factors 2. proper stability. Biological factors 3.
These chemical could be divided into categories i. These environmental hormones affect reproduction.e. Infectious organisms can also cause respiratory diseases. b) Chemicals: A large number of chemicals are introduced in the environment by anthropogenic activities. hazardous and toxic chemicals. it becomes painful and sometimes irreparable damage occurs. Psychological factors These factors may cause harmful changes in the body’s conditions are called disease. development and cause various types of ailments including tumors. High temperature and moisture along with malnutrition help many diseases to spread in these countries. Some chemicals/pesticides like DDT and other industrial pollutants may act as hormone analogs in humans and other species. Industrial effluents containing various chemicals are of major concern. Besides hearing damage various types of physiological and psychological changes are induced by noise pollution. yet if sound levels beyond permissible level exist for certain duration. c) Noise: Although human ear is capable of tolerating a range of sound levels. d) Radiations: Radiations are known to cause short-term and long term changes in various organs.99 4. Some of the chemicals cause abnormality in growth and development while others also sometimes affect the nervous system and the reproductive system. schistosomiasis.
. Such diseases include malaria. The following aspects contribute to the disease and impact on human health: a) b) c) d) e) f) Infectious organisms Chemicals Noise Radiations Diet Settlement
Let us explain the above aspects in details: a) Infectious organisms: Disease causing organisms pose great environmental threats to health more severely in the developing countries especially the tropical ones. filariasis etc. Most of these infections take place when the environmental conditions are unclean and unhygienic. Cosmic rays and ultra-violet rays cause harmful effects on human health which may include cancer.
lacks proper hygienic conditions and adequate health facilities. socio-economic restraints and scientific dogmas resulted in some revolts mainly due to the liberal thoughts of some philosophers. f) Settlement: Proper environment. availability of basic necessities of life like water. The indigenous people and tribal people are the worst victims of development who lose their homes and lands to dams and reservoirs and are deprived of their human rights to native homes. There is strong correlation between cardiovascular diseases and the amount of salt and fat in one’s diet. Improper settlement and poor physical environment may cause various psychological problems which affect various vital physiological processes in the body.100
e) Diet: Diet has a very important role in maintaining health.g. oils etc. unhealthy working conditions. foul smelling polluted air. lacks clean drinking water. true hopes for all people for happy. Various adulterated pulses. However.their rehabilitation is still a burning issue-
. are essential for health living. occupational health hazards etc. The World Health Organization estimates indicate that one out every five persons in this world is malnourished. Every year 40 million people are dying due to consumption of contaminated drinking water. It is quite painful to look at the environmental inequalities. Food contamination can cause various ill effects. sold in the market to earn profit affect human health. one out of three persons does not have enough fuel to cook or keep warm and one of five persons is desperately poor for whom life is nothing but struggle for survival. The developed nations utilizing most of the natural resources and reaping the benefits of industrial development are not bearing the burden of their hazardous wastes. Malnutrition makes human prone to other diseases. sanitation etc. Although the foundation of human rights was laid in the 13th Century when resistance to religious intolerance. 1948. unclean and unsafe drinking water.
HUMAN RIGHTS Human rights are the rights that a human being must enjoy on this earth since he or she is a human being. as they export such wastes to many developing countries who have to face the toxic impacts of the hazardous wastes. The worker class and the poor are the main victims and sufferers of adverse effects of industrial toxins. condiments. Sardar Sarvor Narmada Nigam projecthampered tribal and many others. dignified and secure living conditions were raised with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UNDHR) by the UNO on December 10. Housing is very important from security point of view. (e.
it is physically exceedingly difficult if not impossible to retain the joint family system. most of these joint families are breaking up and are being replaced by nuclear families. Most of the people have to content themselves with a single or two room accommodations. The sense of the same parents differs widely in respect of economic and social levels. nurture and care of the children there are today a number of official and non-official institutions. Baba Amte are still fighting the unending battle with the respective governments. But in the industrialized society of today family is not required to fulfill these roles. There are a number of reasons for this. 2) Breaking up of Joint Family: Traditionally most of the Indian families were joint families. as a sequel to industrialization family trades and professions have been eliminated. Now a number of functions. Compared to today the family had much more function in the past.but very little yielded from the stir so far. rearing and education of children. In big towns we find today a number of Infant-Care centers. As a result of all these conditions joint family is all but finished in industrial towns. The children used to get training in the ancestral profession. the function of family has changed considerably.
. In these circumstances.Medha Patkar. Today children are born in hospital. In almost all big cities people rarely take lunch at home except on Sunday and holidays. This has given rise to individualization. The professional training also is no longer the obligation of the family. homes for orphaned and children homes.)
FAMILY VALUES: 1) Difference regarding function of family: As a result of industrialization and restructure of pay packets. The education of children today is done in schools and not in homes. In many families both husband and wife go out for work. have been taken over by other institutions. Firstly. In these circumstances the function of a modern family are more formal than real. used to be performed by the family. As result of industrialization. which used to be performed by families in the past. too. Secondly. The function of socialization of children.101 activists such as Ms. Even for the Protection. What is even more serious and disgusting that even feeding is no longer the exclusive obligation of the family! Many people in metropolis eat out of homes. in industrial town there is acute shortage of residential accommodation. Traditionally an Indian family used to be a center of birth.
From economic and social points of view woman was subject to man. Thus we find that there is a strong trend towards small families in industrialized towns. There is continuous tension and conflict in the minds of family members. regarded sacred duty and ideals are now considered acceptable only from utilitarian point of view. 4) Change in the status of Women: In past the status enjoyed by women in Indian society was rather low. For a modern wife. a God. the husband can be at best a honorable colleague and under no circumstances. Thus we find in modern society. 5) Disintegration of Family: As a result of industrialization the outlook of intense individualism has grown. Nobody these days appreciates the need for adjustment and give and take. which nourished the traditional Indian family. In modern industrial society there is no room for such ideals.
. At the same time standard of living has also gone up considerably. The prevalence of contraceptives and abortion had made this goal easily attainable. They are therefore becoming independent all walks of life. The father no longer holds away over family members. Compared to parents. Obviously. They wish to assert their independence by defying the laws of society. The women enjoyed no independence. Everyone wants to have his own way. Their status and respect in society has therefore improved considerably. In the past the functions. In Indian homes Ram and Sita were ideals of paternal devotion and wife’s dedication to husband respectively. Without husband the condition of a woman was miserable. Even children used to give unqualified respect to their parents. it is not possible to maintain the standard within a big family. the cost of living has gone up. to man. people these days want to keep small families.102
3) Small families: As a result of industrialization. The willingly subjected themselves to each and every whim of their husbands. Women were shut up in the four walls of the home. Now-a-days women consider themselves equal. Everybody wants good clothes. 6) Difference in family goals: The goals and ideals. As a result of industrialization there has been much improvement in the status of women. As a result of this feeling many women today do not like to marry. families breaking up under last strain. were spiritual and religious. The status of father in a family is being lowered as a result of industrialization. The father was regarded to be head of the family and his command was rarely defied. houses and other comforts of life. The housewives used to regard their husbands as a goal or divine beings. children now have more say in the family affairs. As a consequence of this situation it is small wonder that families are breaking up fast in urban society. no one likes to be subject to anybody. even superior. Therefore. which were.
banks. Domination of machines: In this society machine dominates man. It’s the impact of the continuous increase in salaries and wages every year. and two-wheelers on installments have also been impact of changing pay structures. The ideals change and immoral things are pretended to be sound and worth following.
Society: The members of society have direct impact of such changes in pay structures. Since the matters of religion is neglected while selling certain items. misappropriations etc. Main features of such society are: 1. Even the Grocer start selling items. The issues like consumerism. the comparative gap between rich and poor is widening. that the habits of spending have undergone change. Mass production: In industrialization there is always mass production. Those with jobs and those with-outs have been reality of the rat race of daily life. The shopkeepers change their style of selling. which he would never. The tendencies of buying the articles. There are increasing tendencies of resorting to availing loans from financial institutions. Such persons are willing to buy things. Goods are produced on large-scale basis. house. embezzlement. car. there is naked exploitation of workers. Such society is called industrial society.103
Because of rapid industrialization. 3. there will be no industrialization. articles beyond their buying capacity. 2. Landlords change their rate of rents. luxury items. In such society those who have jobs and reasonable salary or wage are now not worrying about the money in their pockets. It is because unless society is in a position to feed the machines. corruption and dreaming for unrealistic dreams brings about the change in every member of the society. Every thing is done with the help of machines. so that the importance of man and manual work very much decreases. The value system changes. Exploitation of workers: In this society. The savings habits have been getting converted into spending habits. The whole society undergoes the change in approach to life. had. Those with money are willing to spend it for their comforts and those with-outs are resorting to unsocial elements resulting in increase in crimes especially financial crimes like dacoits. They are paid basis minimum wages so that they survive and work for
. given his/her religion. The society also becomes money minded.
Poor working conditions: The workers are not paid adequately with the result that they cannot afford to live in good houses. which he is doing. So is the case of religion. 9. Even their wages are increased after a lot of agitation. No identification with the work: Another feature is that the worker is not identified with the work. family rural life. Envirnomental Pollution: Industry bring with it pollution in the environments. Many religious practices are now questioned. In this way trend towards urbanization starts. These nations. This can be possible only when more attention is paid to scientific advancement. They live in slums in miserable conditions. Colonialism: Industrialization has brought with it colonialism and evils which this system brings with it. start migrating from rural areas. 4. In fact three is no existing social institution. Single-family system is replacing old joint family system. Awakening has started coming in the rural areas where people are not prepared to accept every thing blindly. The people therefore. are economically rich. 10. 11. There are always employment opportunities in the industries. Pressure on existing institutions: Industrialization exerts heavy pressure on existing institutions like marriage. With industrialization the institutions of marriage has come under heavy strains. chemical water flowing out of factories and residue of factory raw materials and dust all create problems of environment pollution and that is unavoidable in the factory situation. 6. The owner of the industry is interested only in getting his goods and making his brand popular in the market. which does not come under strain with industrialization. It is unavoidable because so many goods are produced
. rather than bring workers on the forefront. Every effort is made to have scientific inventions so that new machines can do maximum work within minimum time. Once industries had been set up a town develops around that.104 industry. In fact outlook of these nations is purely materialistic and those weigh every thing in terms of money. Smoke of chimney of factories. 8. This is a continuing feature of the industry. Material prosperity: Industrialization has brought with it material prosperity. Working conditions in which labourers are required to work too are not good. there is always keen desire of society to have new inventions. noise of the machines. 7. It is now considered a friendship and not religious institution. which are industrially advanced. educational system and so on. They are not given any share in profits. Trend towards urbanization: Industries are set abound places where communication and other facilities are easily available. 5. Scientific advancement: In modern era.
national values. Value education increases awareness about our national history. The basic aim is to create and develop awareness about the values. religious values. professional values. It teaches them to be compassionate. aesthetic values and environmental values. The rapid strides of scientific and technological advancement have no doubt. peace loving. enjoyable and sustainable future. Education does not simply mean acquiring a lot of information but also its righteousness and use within the framework of a spectrum of ethical values. constitutional rights and duties. industrial societies have its own advantages and disadvantages but fact remains that today every nation is in a race to industrialize itself. self-centered and over-ambitious and the desired ideals of a real good life have been pushed to the background. brought revolutionary changes in our every day life and information technology has shrunk the whole world into a “global village”. But.
. value commitment and value action. This will be followed by commitment that needs to be re-affirmed over and over again so that every action is taken keeping those values in view. helpful. our cultural heritage. value selection. Value-based education thus has a very significant role in providing proper direction to our youth. with access to very information sitting in one corner over the internet. However. After knowing them the student’s mindset would get oriented towards those values and he will try to critically analyze the same and then select the values which really appeal to him. In this way. Value education has different phases i.105 with the help of machines that unless these are quickly marketed these will create many problems. value orientation. national pride. national integration. their significance and role. in this frenzy for development and mad race for progress perhaps man has become too materialistic.e. social values. Value education helps in arriving at value-based judgment in life based on practical understanding of various natural principles rather than acquiring certain prejudices. Value education encompasses human values. community development and environment. the objective of education should not merely be imparting coaching to the students that they get through examinations with good results and get some good job. peaceful. to inculcate a positive attitude in them and to teach them the distinction between right and wrong. value awareness. generous and tolerant so that they can move towards more harmonious. value appraisal. VALUE EDUCATION Education is one of the most important tools in bringing about socio-economic and cultural progress of a country.
The principles of ecology and fundamentals of environment can really help create sense of earth-citizenship and a sense of duty to care for the earth and its resources and to manage them in a sustainable way so that our children and grand children too inherit a safe and clean planet to live on. mountains or forests. These are the values to be matured so that the forms of life and the biodiversity on this earth are protected. Environmental education should encompass the ethical values of earth-centric rather than human-centric world-view. 3. 4. Instead of considering human being as supreme we have to think of the welfare of the earth. Social values like love. If we disturb this harmony anywhere there will be an ecological imbalance leading to catastrophic results.Global values stress upon the concept of the human civilization is a part of the planet as a whole and similarity nature and various natural phenomena over the earth are interconnected and inter-linked with special bonds of harmony. The basic human value ‘man in nature’ rather than ‘nature for man’ needs to be infused through the same. tolerance and justice which are the basic teachings of most of our religions need to be woven into environmental education. The educational system should promote the earth-citizenship thinking. compassion. Our cultural customs and rituals in many ways teach us to perform such functions as would protect and nurture nature and respect every aspect of nature. “you give me and I give you” (Yajurveda) emphasize that man should not exploit nature without nurturing her. be it rivers. 2.106 Value based Environmental Education: Environmental education or environmental literacy is something that every person should be well versed with.
. earth. Following is the various ways in which we can make environmental education value based: 1. treating them as sacred.e. 5. Preparation of text books and resource materials about environmental education can play an important role in building positive attitudes about the environment. Cultural and religious values enshrined in Vedas like “Dehi me dadami te” i.
the Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome is not a hereditary disease but is caused by HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus). HIV/AIDS has been identified as the forth largest cause of mortality.
. About 3 million people died due to HIV/AIDS in 2003. doesn’t spread through tears. loss of mental peace and merciless destruction of nature’s beauty and natural resources. freedom from greed and austerity. contentment. socio-cultural. AIDS was discovered in 1983. our attitudes and our life-styles. The above mentioned human values. spiritual and global values incorporated into environmental education can go a long way in attaining the goals of sustainable development and environmental conservation. self-discipline. Spiritual values highlight the principles of self-restraint. however. toilet seats or insect bite like that of mosquito or bed bug. The value elements in environmental education alone can succeed in achieving the real goals of environmental literacy. Although sufficient knowledge has been gained about the disease yet a definite source of this virus could not be identified. health hazards. faeces or saliva during normal kissing. clothing. HIV from an infected person can pass to a normal person through blood contact generally during unprotected sex with infected person and sharing needles or syringes contaminated with small quantities of blood from HIV positive person. HIV can also pass from infected mothers to their babies during pregnancy. Valuebased environmental education can bring in a total transformation of our mindset. AIDS is rapidly spreading in Eastern Europe and Asia. “What is the use of building a beautiful house if you don’t have a decent planet to place it on?” perhaps this single question can answer the main burning question-“What is real development and progress?” We certainly do not want development in exchange of environmental disasters. It is expected that in the coming decades there will be sharp increase in HIV/AIDS cases in Russia. HIV. According to a recent estimate about 40 million people are living with HIV/AIDS worldwide and 70% of them in Sub Saharan Africa. towels. sweat. China and India. All these values promote conservationism and transform our consumerist approach. delivery or breast feeding.107 6. It also does not spread by sharing utensils. ethical. urine. reduction of wants. HIV/AIDS AIDS.
Demand of easily accessible fuel wood increases. 2. especially if there are deaths of professional forest workers. AIDS itself does not kill humans. It has spread through small pox vaccine programme of Africa. According to another theory HIV has spread through vaccine programmes in various parts of the world in the following manner: 1. They devote less time for soil conservation. The HIV carriers are also not able to perform well due to lack of energy and frequent fever and sweating. It is also hypothesized that AIDS is a man made epidemic produced by genetically engineered laboratory produced virus. young members with limited resources like land and lack of experience and knowledge find it difficult to look after the perennial crops and prefer crops requiring less labour and time.108
Most evidences have suggested that AIDS has spread from Africa. Even dreaded disease like cancer can easily develop in the HIV infected persons. forestry conservation.
. Effects of HIV/AIDS on Environment: When there is an AIDS epidemic large number of deaths occurs which adversely affect local environment and natural resources. 3. There is decline in T-cells which are the key infection fighters in the immune system. Due to large number of deaths there is loss of labour and the level of production decreases. It had spread through hepatitis B viral vaccine in New York. With fewer adults. It is believed that the virus has been transferred to humans from primates like African Monkey (White sooty mangabeys) or chimpanzees. HIV destroys or disables these cells as a result of which various types of infectious diseases due to microbial invasion occur. The deaths occur due to attack by other diseases because of the weakening of immune system. More timber is required for making coffins or for pyre making.HIV has spread in Africa through HIV contaminated polio vaccine prepared by using monkey’s kidney. Consumption of alcohol is understood to increase the susceptibility to infection and progression of AIDS. More water is required for maintaining hygiene in AIDS affected locality. Los Angeles and San Francisco.
in matrimony. who suffer in a number of ways mainly because they are weaker. Women are often the worst victims of communal enmities. There are now many ‘women groups’ who actively take up women welfare issues and legally constituted ‘women cells’ that exist almost everywhere and fight for protection of women rights and dignity. The exceptionally high number of cases of abduction. Women are also the victims of capitalism. social. The human rights of women are violated too often in a male dominated patriarchal society. particularly in developing countries. in public life and power. in inheritance. helpless and economically dependent. criminal offences and mental torture to women is something that needs immediate attention and reforms in interest of the women. domestic violence. Women Welfare Women usually suffer gender discrimination and devaluation at home. There is a need for complete transformation and reorientation of social ethos for restoring dignity. Development projects like mining very often play havoc with the life of women. race or nation. rape. victimization and harassment take many forms across culture. there is an urgent need for policy reforms and more stringent legislation as well as educational and legal awareness amongst women for checking the atrocities and injustice towards her. Thus. The gender violence. equality and respect for women. development and environment. After losing the forests and getting dehabitlitated from their native places. The statistical data provided by the Ministry of Women and Child Development is an eye opener that deglorifies the celebrated culture of our country. at workplace. Men can still work in the mines or migrate to towns after getting compensation
. There is full-fledged Ministry for Women and Child Development whose sole aim is to work for the welfare and upliftment of women encompassing family planning. men folk usually migrate to towns in search of household with little resources. cultural and family life of women. education and awareness. dowry deaths. status.109 WOMEN AND CHILD WELFARE Women and children are usually the soft targets. health care. The exploitative nature of capitalist development not only affects the natural environment but the traditional.
educate them and help them to become economically self-dependent. But ironically. firework industries. The NNWM is now working for rights of women over natural resources. which are their childhood rights. resettlement and compensation issues. The displaced women driven out from their land-based work are forced to take up marginalized work which is highly un-organized and often socially humiliating. Around 20 million children in our country are estimated to be working as child labours. out of 21 million born every year in India are abandoned soon after their birth due to different socio economic reasons. train them.
. It is however. brassware industry and pottery industry. On the international level. Child Welfare: Children are considered to be the assets of a society.110 from the government. The CEDAW (International Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women. Poverty is the main reason to drive these children into long hours of work in miserable. what to talk of educational and recreational facilities. unhealthy conditions and yet they do not get the minimum nutritive food. refugees and the down-trodden to be educated about these issues. some of them in various hazardous industries like the match industry. Besides the government initiatives there are now a number of non-government (NGOs) mostly as “Mahila mandals” to create awareness amongst women of remote villages even to empower them. the statistical figures depict that about a million babies. The displaced women are the worst affected as they do not get any compensation and are totally dependent upon the males for wages. most important for all women. Issues related to their dignity and honour have not received any attention. 1979) has been a landmark outcome of the decade to be accepted as an international standard for the protection of women’s human rights and socio-economic upliftment. The National Network for Women and Mining (NNWM) with about 20 groups in different mining states of India is rightly fighting for a “gender audit” of India’s mining companies. in the mainstream. the United Nations Decade for Women (1975-85) witnessed inclusion of several women welfare related issues on international agenda. tribal.
education. It is high time to work together for a secure and cleaner environment so as to give our children a cleaner and safer planet. “They consume more water. abuse. Government of India in which a strategic plan has been formulated for children welfare in the priority areas of health. clean and safe drinking water. development and participation. Children are also most affected due to environmental pollution. The right of protection means freedom from exploitation. India is also a signatory to the World Declaration on Survival. expansion of earlier childhood development activities including low cost family based involvements are some of the important actions envisaged. special emphasis on girl child’s education including health and nutrition. social security and right to leisure and recreation. Childhood cancer rates are also increasing by 6% every year. A national plan for action for children has been formulated by the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD). Water diseases are the biggest threat to children. After the UN convention on Rights of Child. The right of development ensures access to education. Universalization of effective access to at least primary level schooling. conscience and religion and appropriate information to the child. it became International Law in the year 1990. protection. The right of survival emphasizes on adequately good standards of living. food and air than adults. The World Summit on Children held on September 30. affecting around 6 million children in India. New Delhi). Even the growing foetus in the mother’s womb is not safe and free from the adverse effects of environmental toxins. mid-day meals scheme. nutrition. inhuman treatment and neglect. Primary education must be free and easily available to one and every child in the country. The right to participation means freedom of thought.111 The UN General Assembly in 1959 adopted the Declaration of the Rights of a child. Hence more susceptible to any environmental contamination. sanitation and environment. Protection and Development of Children. upgradation of home based skills. The law defines right of the child to survival. 1990 had a focus agenda for the wellbeing of the children targeted be achieved in the beginning of the new millennium. consisting of 54 articles and a set of international standards and measures to promote and protect the well being of children in a society.” says one of the scientific reports of Center for Science and Environment (CSE. good nutrition and health.
. early childhood care and support.
Mining etc.e. Government of India has taken up the task of compiling a database on various biotic communities. Biodiversity. Environmental Information System (ENVIS): The Ministry of Environment and Forests. politics or culture. Clean Technologies. forest cover database etc. conservation database. Western Ghats and Eastern Ghats. Development of internet facilities. The ENVIS work for generating a network of database in areas like pollution control. Coastal Ecology.
. called Environmental Information System(ENVIS). geographical information system (GIS) and information through satellites has generated a wealth of up to date information on various aspects of environment and health. Media Related to Environment. Himalayan Ecology. It is usually in computerized form and can be retrieved whenever required. Fluorosis etc. The Ministry of Environment and Forests. With its Head Quarters in Delhi it functions in 25 different centers all over the country. National Management Information System (NMIS) of the Department of Science and Technology has compiled a database on Research and Development Projects along with information about Research Scientists and Personnel involved. Malaria. World Wide Web (WWW). In the computer the information of the database is arranged in a systematic manner that is easily manageable and can be very quickly retrieved. The comprehensive database includes wild life database. Environmental Management. safety measures etc. A number of softwares have been developed for environment and health studies which are user friendly and can help an early learner in knowing and understanding the subject. the health aspects of people working various hazardous and non-hazardous industries. The National Institute of Occupational Health provides computerized information on occupational health i. Database is also available for diseases like HIV/AIDS. Database Database is collection of interrelated data on various subjects. Desertification. Renewable Energy. Wild life. economics. Mangroves. Government of India has created an Information System.112
ROLE OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY IN ENVIRONMENT AND HUMAN HEALTH: Information technology has tremendous potential in the field of environmental education and health as in any other field like business. Remote Sensing.
Geographical Information System (GIS) has proved to be a very effective tool in environmental management. They also provide information of atmospheric phenomenon like approach of monsoon. World Wide Web: A vast quantum of current data is available on World Wide Web. degraded lands or diseased cropland etc can be made based on GIS. Thus Remote Sensing and GIS play a key role in resource mapping. It also helps in identifying several disease infected areas which are prone to some vector born diseases like malaria. industrial growth. We are able to gather digital information on environmental aspects like water logging. road network. Our satellite data also helps in providing correct. Different thematic maps containing digital information on a number of aspects like water resources. minerals etc with the help of information generated by remote sensing satellites. desertification. One of the most important online learning centers with power web is www. smog etc. soil type.com/environmentalscience and multimedia Digital Content Manager (DCM\) in the form CD-ROM provides most current and relevant information on
. deforestation. Even interpretation of polluted zones. We are able to discover many new reserves of oil.113 REMOTE SENSING AND GEOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION SYSTEM (GIS) The satellite imageries provide us actual information about various physical and biological resources and also to some extent about their state of degradation in a digital form through remote sensing. environmental conservation.mhhe. success of conservation efforts etc. human settlements. river and canal network. Several useful softwares have been developed for working in the field of GIS. There are several Distribution Information Centers (DICs) in our country they are linked with each other and with the central information network having access to international database. mineral and energy reserves and so on. GIS is technique of superimposing various thematic maps using digital data on a large number of interrelated or interdependent aspects. reliable and verifiable information about forest cover. crop land or grass land etc are superimposed in a layer form in computer using softwares. GIS serves to check unplanned growth and related environmental problems. Such information is very useful for future land use planning. inversion phenomenon. urban sprawl. ozone layer depletion. Planning for locating suitable areas for industrial growth is now being done using GIS by preparing zoning Atlas. forest land. schistosomiasis etc based upon mapping of such areas. planning and environmental impact assessment. management.
web exercises and quiz has proved to be extremely useful both for the students and the teachers of environmental studies. 5.Teacher friendly features: These include in addition to above supplement resource charts. web exercises. applications and solutions. additional case studies. queries. answer to web exercises. case studies. how to study tips. classroom activities. 3. justice and sustainability?
. power point lecture presentations. current articles and interactive encyclopedia and how to contact your elected officials. animations. What is meant by “population stabilization”? Discuss the family welfare and family planning programmes in Indian context. Discuss the influence of environmental parameters and pollution on human health. key terms. management and planning in the field of environment and health. 2. The World Wide Web with resource material on every aspect. What is Universal Declaration of Human Rights? What is its importance in achieving the goals of equity. hyperlinks on every chapter’s topic with detailed information. 6. What do you mean by Population clock? How is it related to the concept of Zero population growth and Life expectancy? 2. solution to critical thinking questions. How can you trace history of population growth? How can you predict the population growth trends of a nation? Explain with examples. The role of online learning center website has the following distinguishing features: 1. Information technology is expanding rapidly with increasing applications and new avenues are being opened with effective role in education. What is meant by “Population Explosion”? Discuss the Indian scenario. environment maps. 4. various problems. Student friendly features: These include practice quiz. digital files or photos.114 principals of environmental science. career information. Questions: 1. editing facilities to add or delete questions and create multiple versions same test etc.
Briefly discuss HIV/AIDS mode of its spread and its effect on environment. 10. 11. Discuss various issues and measures for women and child welfare at international and national level. Discuss the salient features of Draft Declaration of Human Rights and Environment. 8. ENVIS and GIS in dissemination of environmental information and environmental management?
.115 7. What is the role of NMIS. What are the objectives and elements of value education? How can the same be achieved? 9.
2. The contents of this study material provide the required information for the study and for arriving at some important conclusions about the system.116
Unit 8 FIELD WORK Topics: Visits to a local area to document environmental assets. what do you expect? Penetration of light into the water would be more therefore green
. water-logged/saline land. A) STUDY OF RIVER ENVIRONMENT: 1. Write a report based on your observations and understanding about various aspects of environment. forests. objects in the vicinity they come from and the utility it has for the human being such as commercial.if it is clear. ecological. forest. grassland. Water quality observations: a) Note down whether the water of the river is clear or turbid. insects and birds Objectives: • To make students plan the visits to various environmental assets • To make them note down the variety of organisms. . experimentation and noting down the observations • To think about the problems arising out of the polluted sites • To understand these problems in order to suggest remedial measures • To create overall awareness about the environment they belong to and also inculcate habit of observations. grassland. depending upon the easy access and importance. Background data-Note down the name of the river or tributary. Find out whether the river is perennial or seasonal in nature. hill or mountain. VISIT TO A LOCAL AREA TO DOCUMENT ENVIRONMENTAL ASSETS Visit may be planned to any nearby river. mountain/hilly area. Study of common plants. Visit to some local polluted site: an industrially polluted area. its place of origin and its course of route. medicinal utilities • To cultivate habits of observations. experimentation and formulation of implemental plans to achieve sustainable development I.study river environment.
If pH is quite high i. massive fish death.5 to 8.117 quatic plants will be growing better. it indicates pollution by industries. Also note the temperature of the air-If the temperature of the river water is quite high (greater than 5˚ than the ambient water temperature) what can be the reason? Find out if any thermal pollution is occurring in the river due to discharge of effluents from some industry-Write down the probable impacts of thermal pollution on aquatic life.? What are the important aquatic birds seen by you? b) Draw food chain diagram that would be present in the river.5. acidic waters. then what are these? Find out the likely sources of these pollutants. c) Do you observe any froth and foam or dark coloured or greasy substances in the river? If yes. b) Note the temperature of water with a thermometer or thermo probe.
B) STUDY OF A FOREST:
. tortoise. The pH would normally range between 6. then look for the visual differences in the water quality at the upstream and downstream sides. Is your river water of good quality or it is polluted? 3. it indicates contamination by municipal sewage.scan. The primary productivity will be high. Uses: How is the river water used? Prepare a list of its uses. Human impacts: What are the major impacts caused by human beings in your area on the river? Have you learnt of any major incident i. Observations on aquatic life: a) look for different types of life forms. water snake etc. skin problems to human being consuming the water? Try to interpret the same.-if it turbid. cattle death. crocodile. d) Is there any along the river stretch under study from where discharge of waste water (industrial/municipal sewage) is being done into the river? If yes. e) Determine the pH of water using a portable pH.how would it affect the primary productivity of the river? You know that sunlight penetration is obstructed by turbidity.e. If the pH is quite low i.e.e. 5. 4. alkaline. Do you find free floating small plants or small animals? Are there some rooted plants seen underneath? Do you observe aquatic animals like different fish.
then it cannot help in binding the
. herbs and grasses of lower height? d) Is there a thick or thin forest floor consisting of leaf litter (dry dead leaves) algae.i. they tend to bind the soil particles firmly and help in conserving soil. long tap root? c) if roots are adventitious. mining.g. delicate. a part of some Biosphere reserve or National park or Sanctuary? If yes. then what are the special features associated with it? 2. a tropical rain forest/ deciduous forest etc.? What would be their probable impacts?
C) ENVIRONMENTAL ASPECTS OF GRASSLAND: 1. fungi etc.118 1. quarrying. dam building. timber extraction etc.e. juicy nature with green colour showing good palatability? OR the dominant plants shave a coarse. Ecological utility: Do you feel cooler in the forest? Is it more humid? Is the air fresher than that in the city? How many types of birds. runner-type. Commercial uses: Prepare a list of the various uses of the present forest. Are these dominant plants having soft.? What is the use of stratified structure i. having rhizomes or there is a single.a) what are the dominant trees? Are there any herbaceous climbers or woody climbers? Is the forest having a close canopy or has open spaces? b) Does the forest show a thick/dense growth or it is degraded? c) Is there an under story of shrubs.? Is the present forest. multi-layered structure of vegetation in the forest? 3. 5. (adventitious roots). grazing. Background data: Note down the name of the forest. fenced or disturbed? 2. 4.e. are there numerous fibrous roots in a bunch. What type a forest is it? . Human impacts: Do you observe any anthropogenic activities in the forest e. animals or insects do you see around? Make a list of the ecological uses of the forest based on your observations. Grassland quality observations: a) Try to identify the names of the dominant grasses or plants.e. hard texture with spines/thorns? b) Take out a few plants to see what type of roots do they have. deforestation. Forest Structure: Note down the salient features of the forest. If the root is tap root. Background information: What type of grassland is this? Is it perennial or annual? Are there tall grasses or short grasses? Is it dominated by just a few species or is it a mixed type of grassland? Is it protected i.
Do you observe any major anthropogenic activity there? What is the condition of forest growth in the region? Can you establish some links between these aspects? You can gather some information about such aspects from the native people. hard. whether it is well managed or degraded/
. 4. its uses and its status i. Do you find dense forests on the hills or deforestation is observed in some areas? Look for some dominant tree species and find out their names and uses from local people. Note down the altitude of the region. Observations on natural vegetation: Make your observations on the forests present on the hill slopes. where landslide would have occurred recently or in the past. Gather some information about the water shed in the study area. Normal grazing is useful for increasing the overall productivity/yield of the grassland. 3. 2.e. rivers and channels coming out from the mountains. Background data: Note down the name of the mountain ranges or the hills.e. it indicates degradation of the grassland due to overgrazing. only a limited number of livestock (cattle) is being allowed to graze OR there is unmanaged grazing. Water-sheds: Try to look for some springs. Make your own observations in the present grassland i.e. prickly plants occupying some areas. What is the condition dominant in the present grassland? Do you observe soil erosion? 3.
D) STUDY OF MOUTAIN/HILLY AREA: 1. Find out the average annul rainfall and temperature in the area.Grazing and Overgrazing: Find out if there is managed grazing on the grassland i. Uses: Prepare a list of the utilities of the grassland. Landslides: You will come across some regions. Overgrazing has several far reaching consequences. 4. The land area from which water drains under gravity to a common drainage channel is called watershed. whether there is limited grazing or overgrazing? a) If you find that good quality grasses/herbs are growing then it is rightly grazed b) If you see denuded areas with little grass cover it shows overgrazing c) If you observe thorny.119 soil particles firmly.
construction. An area having permanently standing water on the soil is a water logged soil. Dip in EC probe into it which will indicate the EC of the soil. EC) of the soil. Do you find these crops/plantations well suited to hill environment OR do you think they can have some damaging effects later on? Discuss with local people. contour or strip cropping? Why is such cropping helpful in hills? c) Find out the water and nutrient requirements of these crops.g. water logging and salinization.g. You can observe crusts of white salts on the soil surface making it barren that is a saline soil. traditional or modernized? What would be their impacts? b) Do you observe farming. Plantations/farming: Look for the type of plantations (e. The EC can be as high as 20-40 dS/m also. hydroelectric projects etc.120 5. wheat) done artificially on the hill slops. d) How much anthropogenic activities do you observe on the mountain/hill? These activities usually include mining. Agricultural practices have also led to pesticide pollution. If the EC exceeds 4. Gather information from the farmers about its historical background i.
. VISIT TO SOME LOCAL POLLUTED SITE Human activities related to urbanization and industrialization has led to large scale pollution of the environment. how much irrigation was being done in these areas and for how long? Was the area fertile some years ago and has gradually become water-logged and saline? What was the crop grown earlier? Try to correlate the problem with the irrigation practices followed there. Background information: Visit a water logged or salt-affected land in some rural agricultural area. What major impacts do you observe or predict in future?
II. quarrying. maize. it is saline.a) what type of farming is done? Is it shifting cultivation. tea plantation) or farming (e. tourism.e.. A) STUDY OF AN INDUSTRIALLY POLLUTED AREA: 1. But then it would hardly support any vegetation b) Do such soil support any crops? Note down the names of the salt-tolerant and salt-sensitive crops. 2. Salinity and crop growth: a) Find out the salinity level (Electrical conductivity. A visit to some industrial area or degraded land area will be very useful to obtain first hand information about the same. For this you can take 10 grams of soil and dissolve it in 20ml water in a beaker.
Find out which of the plants in your locality have medicinal value? b) Timber wood trees: Note down the important trees of your locality which yield timber wood. Insects: Identify some common insects of your locality a) which may be spreading diseases b) which are crop-pests or animal pests c) which help in pollination of ornamental/crop flowers. 2. tannin. productive. resins.
.121 3. shrubs and herbs. dye. rubber. What measures can you suggest? STUDY OF COMMON PLANTS. Remediation: Find out what remedial measures are being taken by the farmer to deal with the problem. a) Medicinal plants: Local people often have indigenous knowledge about the medicinal value of various plants. 3. Observe small birds with long beaks pollinating flowers. social and ecological value. Birds: Identify some common birds of your locality. including trees. Observe the birds in the plough-fields eating insects/leaves. Plants: Study the common plants of your locality. 1. animals and microbes found on this earth is just remarkable and has tremendous potential in terms of its consumptive. insects and birds of our locality. fiber etc. Find out how some of them are useful to us and some cause damage to our crops/fruits. c) Miscellaneous: Note down the names of plants which have other uses like producing gum. It is worthwhile to know about some common plants. You can study them mainly in relation to their value. INSECTS AND BIRDS Biodiversity or the variability among plants.