India Insight

Give the public a role in Clean Ganga project, says Rajendra Pachauri

September 16, 2014

India’s holiest river is due for a clean-up, with Prime Minister Narendra Modi taking personal responsibility for restoring the Ganga and ridding the 2,500 km long river of industrial effluents and untreated sewage.

More pilgrims mean more trouble for shrines in north India

June 28, 2013

Nestled in the Himalayas, Uttarakhand attracts increasing numbers of visitors every year. Between 2001 and 2010, the number of visitors to the state rose nearly 200 percent to 30.3 million. With major Hindu shrines located in the state, about 70 percent of the tourists who visit the state visit religious sites. That is a worrying sign for ecologically fragile areas such as Kedarnath – a small temple town located 3,583 metres (11,755 feet) above sea level and almost entirely washed out in recent flash floods.

Electronic waste rules: In letter, but without spirit

May 17, 2012

Ever wondered what happens to your old mobile phones, computers, television sets and refrigerators the moment you discard them? They are most likely to land in an unauthorised scrap yard waiting to be recycled in a hazardous and unscientific manner — causing great damage to the environment. The rapid growth of the information technology sector in India has only contributed to this problem of accumulating e-waste or electronic waste.

Report indicates India’s shores danger zone for turtles

September 30, 2011

A recent study by an environmental group, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, has identified the 11 most threatened sea turtle populations from around the world. And five of these so-called danger zones for sea turtles are in the Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs) of India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.

Will necessity help coal trump environment concerns?

September 27, 2011

Coal accounts for 60 percent of India’s energy use, runs most power stations and factories and enabled state-run company Coal India to have a blockbuster IPO last year raising a record $3.5 billion.

from Photographers' Blog:

Barefoot in a recycled school

July 25, 2011

The environment hasn't been spared in India's headlong rush towards development and consumerism. With it came mounds of garbage, piles of waste that had nowhere to go, industrial pollutants that were fed straight back into the rivers and lakes that supply drinking water to millions.‬ Walking around the streets of any town in India, you don't get the feeling that care for the environment is on the top of anyone's list of priorities.‬

from Tales from the Trail:

Green energy aspirations for Obama’s India visit

October 27, 2010

INDIAWhen Barack Obama heads for India next month, he'll be carrying a heavy policy agenda -- questions over the handling of nuclear material, the outsourcing of U.S. jobs and India's status as a growing economic power, along with regional relations with Pakistan and Afghanistan. But Rajendra Pachauri, the Nobel Peace laureate who heads the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, hopes the U.S. president has time to focus on clean energy too.

Environmentalists cheer news of scrapping of power project

May 18, 2010

INDIA-VEDANTAEnvironmentalists are hailing news that India’s ministry of environment and forests has scrapped a proposed power plant by Larsen & Toubro in eastern India close to a nesting ground for endangered Olive Ridley turtles.

Why let a debate determine the fate of GM foods?

February 11, 2010

Students hold a mock funeral procession against genetically modified brinjal crop in Chandigarh January 28, 2010. REUTERS/Ajay VermaThere’s nothing Indians like better than a good debate.

So when Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh announced last month that he would hold public debates to decide the commercial fate of genetically modified brinjal (eggplant), there were hopes these would provide a chance for all stakeholders to be heard.

Himalayan glacier meltdown: gospel truth?

January 19, 2010

Kashmiri horsemen walk over a glacier near Sheshnag, 130 km southeast of Srinagar, June 12, 2006. REUTERS/Jayanta Shaw/FilesTwenty-five years from now, the Himalayan glaciers would have almost disappeared. Almost.