Your Environment This Week: The Himalayan waterbird, climate-resilient seeds and women safari drivers!

This week’s environment and conservation news stories rolled into one.

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[Interview] MK Ranjitsinh on why ‘conservation is an art’ and the need for a grassland policy

In this interview with Mongabay-India, MK Ranjitsinh Jhala, one of the masterminds behind the Wild Life Protection Act, stated that ex-situ conservation should be subservient to in-situ conservation. He also narrated his fight with power companies in the habitats of the great Indian bustard.

Women take the wheel for safer tourism in Satpura Tiger Reserve

Women drivers have been appointed to take tourists on safaris. The initiative aims to provide employment opportunities to women from local communities, living in and around tourist destinations, while also ensuring the safety of women at these spots.

Image shows a woman sitting in the driver's seat of a jeep

Ibisbill, the poorly understood Himalayan waterbird faces threats, finds study

Owing to its wide range, the ibisbill is recorded only in highly specialised riverine habitats and is a rare sight. Its population remains unknown across its range in southern Central Asia.

Livestock and wild herbivores impact soil carbon differently

Scientists at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) examined livestock and native herbivores and found that the two groups alter soil carbon diversely and also differ in their impacts on vegetation composition, with herb-and-grass dominating in areas with native herbivores and sedges in areas where livestock grazed.

[Interview] IPCC author Aditi Mukherji on energy transition in agriculture and water security

‘Just’ energy transitions in agriculture are vital to address water insecurity and the carbon footprint of agriculture in India, says IPCC scientist and water expert Aditi Mukherji.

Aditi Mukherji interacting with farmers during her visit in northern Bangladesh. Photo by IWMI.

Frequent earthquakes a reminder of the vulnerabilities of the Himalayan region

Enough strains have been accumulated in the Himalayan region that indicate the  likelihood of a severe earthquake in the future, warn studies.


Thirunelly’s seed festival celebrates traditional climate-resilient seeds and farm produce

Conservationists, farmers, agriculture scientists and activists come together to honour traditional paddy seeds and other produce.

Image shows a group of women standing around a table laid with seeds

State Finance Commissions in ‘poor’ shape, affecting decentralisation process

It has been 30 years since India began decentralising governance to empower local bodies, but most states have failed to adhere to the constitutional obligation of constituting State Finance Commissions at regular intervals.

Open panchayat near Narsingarh in Madhya Pradesh. With the 73rd and 74th amendments, India took the first definite step on the path to ensure effective local governance in the 1990s. Photo by Suyash Dwivedi/Creative Commons.

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