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Environment UNCCD – 04

Agro-forestry:

A sustainable system of managing a piece of land through combined production of agricultural crops and forest crops/ animals, either simultaneously or sequentially to ensure the most efficient land use under a management system in accordance with socio-cultural practices of local people. 

Social Forestry: 

It is the plantation in non-forest area for benefit of the society.  Social forestry refers to the management and protection of forests and afforestation on barren lands with the purpose of helping in the environmental, social and rural development. The term was first used in India in 1976 by The National Commission on Agriculture, Government of India.

CAMPA 

To compensate the loss of forest area and to maintain the sustainability, the Government of India came up with CAMPA (Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority). The law establishes the National Compensatory Afforestation Fund under the Public Account of India, and a State Compensatory Afforestation Fund under the Public Account of each state.  These Funds will receive payments for: (i) compensatory afforestation, (ii) net present value of forest (NPV), and (iii) other project specific payments. The National Fund will receive 10% of these funds, and the State Funds will receive the remaining 90%. According to the Act’s provision, a company diverting forest land must provide alternative land to take up compensatory afforestation. For afforestation, the company should pay to plant new trees in the alternative land provided to the state.

Way forward 

Likewise various other efforts like sustainable agriculture practices and regulation of plantation, bamboo usage, protection of flora and fauna, ecological bridges and corridors to prevent man-animal conflicts, flood plain management, catchment area regulation, careful planning in ecological sensitive areas, maintenance of reservoirs, prevention of landslides etc are other efforts to be undertake for forest conservation and management.

Minerals and energy resources

Introduction 

A mineral is a pure inorganic substance that occurs naturally in the earth’s crust. All of the Earth’s crust, except the rather small proportion of the crust that contains organic material, is made up of minerals. More than two-thousand minerals have been identified and most of these contain inorganic compounds formed by various combinations of the eight elements (O, Si, Al, Fe, Ca, Na, K, and Mg) that make up 98.5% of the Earth’s crust. Industry depends on about 80% of the known minerals. 

A mineral deposit is a concentration of naturally occurring solid, liquid, or gaseous material, in or on the Earth’s crust in such form and amount that its extraction and its conversion into useful materials or items are profitable now or may be so in the future. 

Mineral resources are non-renewable and include metals (e.g. iron, copper, and aluminium), and non-metals (e.g. salt, gypsum, clay, sand, phosphates). Minerals are valuable natural resources being finite and non-renewable. They constitute the vital raw materials for many basic industries and is the primary raw material for energy and fuel which is the driver of economic activity which are a major resource for development. Management of mineral resources has, therefore, to be closely integrated with the overall strategy of development; and exploitation of minerals is to be guided by long-term national goals and perspectives. Demand for minerals is increasing world-wide as the population increases and the consumption demands of individual people increase. The mining of earth’s natural resources is, there­fore accelerating, and it has accompanying environmental consequences.

Energy resources: Fossil fuels 

The fossil fuel is the major contributor of the energy consumption in the world. It is a non-renewable and conventional energy source. These energy sources are originated from deposition of remains of living organisms buried under ground for millions of years by factors such as pressure, heat and time. These are finite resources that are limited and may deplete in future without replenishment.

Formation – Sedimentary rock formations are the most common geologic environments for storing oil and gas. Carbon rich organic material called peat can be formed when vegetation dies and decays in aqueous environments such as swamps. If peat is buried by subsequent geological activity, the buried peat is subjected to increasing temperature and pressure, and peat can eventually be trans-formed into coal by the process of coalification. 

The oil and gas formation begins with the death of microscopic organisms such as algae and bacteria. The remains of the organisms settle into the sediments at the base of an aqueous environment as organic debris.

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