Africa: Playground for Asian Powers

Importance of Africa has increased manifold in the current geopolitical climate. In particular, the three Asian economies China, Japan and India have adopted a more muscular approach, as the resource rich continent features high on their global agenda. Given the three countries are in competition for influence, both within Asia and beyond, they are keenly investing in Africa’s infrastructure, energy and development sectors, seeking growth as strategic partners and markets. The Asian alignment for Africa comes at a time when the US has adopted a more isolationist approach and the African economies are bearing the brunt of commodity price fluctuations, […]

Energy Policy Making for Optimal Resource Management

The global oil demand is expected to remain healthy for the next few years, especially in the developing countries of Asia and Africa. Though currently suffering from a slowdown due to the US-China trade war and the rise in renewable technological innovation, one cannot simply write-off oil or for that matter any other conventional fuel like coal or gas, as it forms an integral part of the new energy mix of many nations (both developing and the developed) even today, which deploy tools of policy making for the purpose. However, the new energy mix, of the present age, brings the […]

Building an Inclusive Bio-Economy

The global community, in light of increased geopolitical tensions, economic crisis, magnified disparities, global warming and other socio-economic incidents, has realized that the current fossil fuel based-economic model is not a viable one. Agenda 2030 and its Sustainable Development Goals, then, can be viewed as the global response to this problem. There is now a general consensus regarding the introduction of biomass fuels and renewables as part of the economic model, which will enable nations to progress on the path to an inclusive sustainable development- in other words introduce a bio-economy. What is Bio-Economy? Conspicuously, world’s basic commodities are derivatives […]

Climate Justice

Often categorized as an environmental issue, climate change in reality is as much of a social, political and economic issue as it is environmental. It has the ability to engulf the communities everywhere on the planet, especial those belonging to the vulnerable sections particularly in the developing countries. This calls for a climate justice which entails a narrative of the people, for the people and by the people. Climate justice is very much fundamental for sustainable development of the world as such which is free of food security, water availability, public health, housing and overall healthy and holistic well-being among […]

Integrated Planning is Vital for Sustainability

There is mounting evidence pointing towards the contribution of urban centers in global climate change, extinction of flora and fauna and large scale pollution. They indeed are counted as the main source of green-house gas emissions, especially in light of the economic, social and cultural activities of the human population which have failed on the sustainability parameters. This calls for an integrated planning which entails land management and developing potential means for mitigation of the biodiversity and environmental loss. To begin with, UNDP and UNEP define integrated development planning as an approach that simultaneously advances multiple benefits across the three […]

Environment Action versus Activism

This year, on environment day, world over people joined in the #Beat Plastic Pollution movement. Typically, there was a crescendo of events discussing plastic ban given its side-effects on our ecosystem. Often, such one-day events or more like one-time wonders are erased from people’s minds. It is then pertinent to keep them alive through continuous effort— which a mere agenda, without any action, is unequipped to do.  We need governments and national actions plans to implement such causes, which are no less than a social movement. Environmentalism then is a social movement which has the capability to influence human activity […]

Tibetan Plateau: Ecological Anchor of Asia

The importance of Tibet to the world’s geopolitical events is much understated. Often relegated to as the China issue, it holds enormous geopolitical and environmental significance, especially in context of Asia. As a geographical region, Tibet is a rich bed of minerals, water bodies and energy resources. It has often been referred to as the ‘Water Tower of Asia’ given that there are 10 river systems originating here, and is also considered the maker of Asian Monsoons. Chinese geologists have discovered more than 130 minerals like uranium, boron, lithium, iron etc. in Tibet. No wonder then China’s Great Leap Forward […]

Environmental Bearings on Culture & Traditions

  Geography and its environmental makeup has had a profound effect on the people and their culture and tradition. Why is it that houses in some regions have flat roofs while others slant— why is it that certain regions specialize in cotton linen attires while others in thicker clothes— Why is it that in some cultures the dead bodies are buried while in others cremated— Is it only religious motive or does it go beyond that…. Culture most certainly leans heavily on environment. Be it topography, climate or raw materials— environment is decisive factor in the inception and structure of […]

Public Health Policy and Climate Change

Health, since eons of centuries has been subject to environmental events and influence. In the current scenario too, the fluctuating climate patterns world over are marked by heat waves, thunderstorms, heavy rainfall, floods, rise in sea level, glacier melting, extended droughts, more intense storms like cyclones, hurricanes etc. all are capable of posing as a challenge to the health policy of nations and individuals. While climate change has been recognized as a global threat, it is important to realize the health risks it poses; and equally important for the governments of the world is also to prepare themselves for the […]

India & Green Economy

The last few years have been tough for India, not just in context of economic reforms but also environment— specifically in terms of climate. As per the India Meteorological Department, 2017 was the fourth warmest year of the country, with the last quarter of 2017 being the hottest since 1901. In the beginning of the 20th century, India, a British colony then, suffered from significant climate change marked by severe droughts and famines, which were further fueled by fatal British economic policies. Notably, India’s economic backwardness wasn’t due to any niggardliness of geography, but was rather anthropogenic. There was no […]