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How to approach environmentalism

By: Sunita Narain

2010 was a loud year for the environment. High profile projects—from Vedanta to Posco and Navi Mumbai airport to Lavasa—hit the headlines for non-compliance with environmental regulations.

While 2009 was the 25th anniversary of the Bhopal gas tragedy, it was only last year that we were all outraged by the disaster. The realisation of how every institution—the judiciary, parliament and government— had miserably failed to provide justice to the victims shocked us deeply.

Sponge iron’s dirty growth

In the years to come, India's expanding steel production will be largely driven by sponge iron. Sponge iron, also known as direct reduced iron(DRI), is produced from direct reduction of iron ore (in the form of lumps, pellets or fines) by a reducing gas produced from natural gas or coal. Sponge iron gives a cheaper way of producing steel which has a high demand in the market. 

The endgame at Cancun

By: Sunita Narain

As I write this, some 24 hours are left to finalise the agreement at the 16th Conference of Parties to the climate change convention being held in Cancun. At this moment it seems the predictable deadlock in talks will continue. Like all other global climate meetings, the world remains deeply divided on the matter of how to cut emissions of greenhouse gases that even today determine economic growth. Not much is expected to happen at the beach city of Cancun.

Here comes the sun

By: Mahazareen Dastur

The German experience is a good example for India’s solar energy mission

NREGA’s technological sabbatical

NREGA and Biometrics: conflicts and conclusions

By: Jyotika Sood

Over 25 million job card holders registered under Mahatama Gandhi National Rural Employment Act (MGNREGA) could be affected by the rural development ministry’s decision to introduce biometrics (a form of identity access management and access control) to the scheme. The ministry even claims that this project will overcome the drawbacks of MGNREGA like fake job cards and ghost beneficiaries.

How to approach environmentalism

2010 was a loud year for the environment. High profile projects—from Vedanta to Posco and Navi Mumbai airport to Lavasa—hit the headlines for non-compliance with environmental regulations. While 2009 was the 25th anniversary of the Bhopal gas tragedy, it was only last year that we were all outraged by the disaster. The realisation of how every institution—the judiciary, parliament and government— had miserably failed to provide justice to the victims shocked us deeply.

Down To Earth Cover Story: Future shock

As the world continues to pump greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, the global temperatures could rise by 3°C by mid-century, says a soon-to-be-released report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
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Diesel hides behind CNG

What’s going on? First the key partners of the Central Pollution Control Board -- IOC, and NEERI -- involved with yet to be released source apportionment study made claims publicly that LPG is the most polluting fuel in our cities. Now in quick succession a second study follows from CPCB that ranks CNG as the “worst” fuel and Euro II-III diesel as the “best”. No other government in the world has every branded CNG as worse than Euro II-III diesel.

Front Page Teaser: 

What’s going on? First the key partners of the Central Pollution Control Board -- IOC, and NEERI -- involved with yet to be released source apportionment study made claims publicly that LPG is the most polluting fuel in our cities.

Deal won, stakes lost

Last fortnight we discussed the clandestine endgame afoot at Cancun to change the framework of the climate change negotiations to suit big and powerful polluters. Since then Cancun has concluded and a deal, in the form of a spate of agreements, has been gavelled into existence by the chair. Commentators and climate activists in the Western world are ecstatic. Even the critics say pragmatism has worked and the world has taken a small step ahead in its battle to fight emissions that determine its growth.

The endgame at Cancun

As I write this, some 24 hours are left to finalise the agreement at the 16th Conference of Parties to the climate change convention being held in Cancun. At this moment it seems the predictable deadlock in talks will continue. Like all other global climate meetings, the world remains deeply divided on the matter of how to cut emissions of greenhouse gases that even today determine economic growth. Not much is expected to happen at the beach city of Cancun.

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