Tag Archives: Environment

how your diet impacts the planet

We all know how important it is to maintain a balanced diet. But have you ever sat down and thought about how your diet impacts the environment? Let us take the example of one particular food item whose popularity has gone up in the past few years: Meat. It is a great source of complete protein and contains all the amino acids our bodies need. Vitamin B-12, a vitamin which helps in the formation of red blood cells and prevention of anaemia can be obtained from only animal sources. Meat is, therefore, great for your health, but is it all that great for the environment?

Eating meat has dire consequences for the environment. If we look at the land used to feed livestock, it is about eight times more than the land we use for feeding humans. In the US, approximately 260 million acres of land that was once occupied by forests, is now grazed by cattle. Raising animals for human consumption accounts for approximately 40% of the total amount of agricultural output in industrialised countries Most estimates claim that between 1,800 and 2,500 gallons of water go into producing each pound of beef. All these resources can be put to much better use, like feeding the millions of people starving in the world and growing vegetables or wheat. But we choose to use them to raise cattle; cattle which will eventually be slaughtered for human consumption.

Worldwide, livestock rearing makes up anywhere between 14.5 and 18 per cent of the total greenhouse gas emissions. If we compare it to the transportation sector, it is responsible for 14 per cent of the emissions. Not to mention the large amount of transportation required for the meat to reach from feedlots, to slaughterhouses, to processing centres and finally your local grocery stores. You’re probably better off driving your car than eating that meat on your plate.

Moreover, the conditions in which animals are kept in slaughterhouses is terrible. Animals are chained and dragged and beaten with tools ranging from cattle prods to shovels. They are packed into trucks and transported in masses, fearing the slow and cruel death that awaits them. Furthermore, they are hung upside down and decapitated. This allows them to bleed out quicker and is commercially beneficial for the processing of meat. If we look at poultry slaughterhouses, almost everything there is automated. They kill approximately 50,000 animals in just one week. Even the workers are affected by the work they do. Since most slaughterhouses are opened up in rural areas, where there are few job opportunities for the people, they are forced to work in such inhumane places, doing this horrible work. Most of us know this, yet we turn a blind eye to such events as we’re too afraid to face the reality of our food.

How can we prevent all this? The best thing to do would be to turn vegetarian or vegan. But we simply cannot expect the billions of people on the planet to give up meat. Not everyone has that privilege. Instead, one could try to reduce their meat intake. Educate those around you on the malpractices and evils of slaughterhouses and argue for reform. This is not something we should ignore. The time for change has come.

Sources: https://sentientmedia.org/slaughterhouses/


how to live more sustainably

“If it can’t be reduced, reused, repaired, rebuilt, refurbished, refinished, resold, recycled, or composted, then it should be restricted, designed or removed from production”

~ Pete Seeger

Sustainable living is something which needs to be adopted  now more than ever. It can be defined as a lifestyle that attempts to reduce an individual’s or society’s use of the Earth’s natural resources, and one’s personal resources. Our current methods of living are far from sustainable. Our planet is slowly dying; we’re the ones killing it. It has been talked about a lot, but not always taken into practice . If we are to preserve this Earth for the future generations, we need to switch up our lifestyles and make them more eco-friendly. Here are a few ways to achieve it:

  • Go Vegan/Vegetarian 

The Meat and dairy industry are one of the greatest contributors to climate change. If you want to reduce your carbon emissions, then try going vegetarian or vegan. Research has shown that a vegan diet can promote weight loss and reduce your risk of heart disease by lowering cholesterol levels. Even if you cannot completely give up meat and dairy, then try reducing your intake of them. Remember, it is better if a 1000 people practice sustainability imperfectly, than if 3 people do it perfectly.

  • Be mindful of your purchases

If you can afford it, then choose to buy fair trade, organic and non plastic goods. Fair trade certified products promote environmentally friendly production method, and safe working conditions for the works for goods like coffee or chocolate. Also, we all know the adverse effects of plastics, and how beneficial it is to give up plastic. Similarly, watch what materials comprise the clothes you purchase. Or, you can try thrifting and fixing up old clothes. So, making better purchasing choices can promote a sustainable lifestyle. (However, I understand that not everyone can afford to buy such products. So don’t worry about it, there are still many ways you can lead a sustainable life.)

  • Go for reusable options

You might not realise it, but the little plastic bags, straws and water bottles you purchase really add up. In the long run, it is crucial to give up plastic, a material which has damaged much of our oceans. Carrying around cloth bags, having a glass or metal straw, and keeping a reusable water bottle is not only much better for the environment, but also a much cheaper option as it saves you the hassle of having to buy these products whenever you need them.

  • Switch up your modes of transportation 

Greenhouse gas emissions emitted from the millions of vehicles driven around each day, and the flights which fly everyday,  are of no help to the environment. Substituting your car ride for a walk or cycling drastically reduces your carbon footprint, and keeps you in great health. Try limiting the number of flights you take in a year, or even replacing them with a train ride can prove to be far more sustainable.

Sustainability is not just limited to these practices. Don’t feel disheartened if you can’t always buy ethical produce, or completely quit meat and dairy. Planting trees, replacing our light bulbs, composting etc. can all be done to promote a greener way of living. The smallest of changes can sometimes have the largest of impacts 

International Tiger day

The Tiger is one of the largest cat in the world. Having black and orange strips with beautifully marked face makes his distinctive and amazing image. To aware the people about tiger conservation, 29th July is celebrated as a International Tiger day. The motive of this day is to spread the awareness to save the Tigers and their habitates. There are plathora of issues are facing by tigers across the world. Some of the issues include poaching, conflict with humans, and habitat loss. Only around seven percent of the historical range of a tiger is still intact today. That is an incredibly small and worrying numbers. A lot of people are not aware about these major losses but a little knowledge and through spreading awareness can make them aware and it leads to protection the lives of Tigers and their habitates


Loss of land


Desertification is a type of land degradation in drylands which biological productivity is lost due to natural processes or induced by human activities whereby fertile areas become increasingly more arid. It is caused by a variety of factors, such as through climatic changes and through the over exploitation of lands through human activity.Desertification is a significant global ecological and environmental with far-reaching socio-economic and political consequences.

Serious and extensive land deterioration is the causes for desertification.SAHARA DESERT is the most effected area. The impact of global warming and human activities are presented in the Sahel. In this area the level of desertification is very high compared to other areas.Another major area that is being impacted by desertification is the GOBI Desert.South America is another area affected by desertification, as 25% of the land is classified as drylands. In Mangolia, around 90% of grassland is considered vulnerable to desertification by the UN.  In India, The THAR affected most of lands.


The immediate cause is the loss of most vegetation.. This is driven by a number of factors, alone or in combination, such as drought, climatic shifts, tillage for agriculture, overgrazing and deforestation for fuel or construction materials.one of the most common causes is overgrazing.Overpopulation is one of the most dangerous factors contributing to desertification.climatic changes is likely a major contributing factor in the desertification process. . The continuous use of the land rapidly depletes the nutrients of the soil causing desertification and pesticide smay deplects its ph value.

The Effects of desertification is Sand and dust storms.There has been a 25% increase in global annual dust emissions between the late nineteenth century to present day. Food security: Global food security is being threatened by desertification and o er population.Vegetation patterning:landscape may progress through different stages and continuously transform in appearance.Desertification is decreasing the amount of sustainable land for agricultural uses but demands are continuously growing.

Lossing nature lives.

Due to Desertification, The world losses its habitat.They also suffer from poor economic and social conditions.This situation is exacerbated by land degradation because of the reduction in productivity.Agriculture is a main source of income for many desert communities. The increase in desertification in these regions has degraded the land.This has negatively impacted the economy and increased poverty rates.Planting more trees – the roots of trees hold the soil together and help to reduce soil erosion from wind and rain.

  1. Planting more trees – the roots of trees hold the soil together and help to reduce soil erosion from wind and rain.
  2. Improving the quality of the soil – this can be managed by encouraging people to reduce the number of grazing animals they have and grow crops instead.
  3. Control of population and overgrazing. These are reduction factors of Desertification.

International Tiger Day

“Let us keep the tigers in jungles & not in history, save tigers”

Global Tiger Day, often called International Tiger Day, is an annual celebration to raise awareness for tiger conservation, held annually on 29 July. It was created in 2010 at the Saint Petersburg Tiger Summit. In the summit, governments of tiger-populated countries vowed to double the tiger population by 2022. Almost a decade has passed since then. The goal of the day is to promote a global system for protecting the natural habitats of tigers and to raise public awareness and support for tiger conservation issues. According to the WWF experts Darren Grover,  the world had lost around 97 percent of wild tigers in the last 100 years. Currently, only 3,000 tigers are left alive compared to around 100,000 Tiger a century ago.  Many international organizations, including the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), and Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI), are also involved in the conservation of the wild tigers.

“The roar is rare.”

The awe-inspiring tiger is one of the most iconic animals on Earth. The tiger population across the world dropped sharply since the beginning of the 20th century but now for the first time in conservation history, their numbers are on the rise. Union Minister for Environment, Forests and Climate Change, Prakash Javadekar, on Tuesday, released the detailed Status of Tigers Report 2018. According to the report, released on the eve of Global Tiger Day, tigers were observed to be increasing at a rate of 6 percent per annum in India from 2006 to 2018. In good news for India, Environment Minister, Prakash Javadekar on Tuesday said, the country “has 70 percent of world’s tiger population”, after releasing a report on tiger census ahead of International Tiger Day on July 29. 

There are a number of different issues that tigers all around the world face. There are a number of threats that are driving tigers close to extinction, and we can do our bit to make sure that we do not lose these incredible creatures. Some of the threats that tigers face include poaching, conflict with humans, and habitat loss.  Poaching and the illegal trade industry is a very worrying one. This is the biggest threat that wild tigers face. Demand for tiger bone, skin, and other body parts is leading to poaching and trafficking. This is having a monumental impact on the sub-populations of tigers, resulting in localized extinctions. We often see tiger skins being used in home decor. Moreover, bones are used for medicines and tonics. This has seen illegal criminal syndicates get involved in the tiger trade in order to make huge profits. It really is a worrying industry. In fact, it is thought to be worth 10 billion dollars per annum in the United States alone. This is why we need to support charities and work hard to put an end to poaching and the illegal trade of tiger parts. While this represents the biggest threats to tigers, there are a number of other threats as well. This includes habitat loss. Throughout the world, tiger habitats have reduced because of access routes, human settlements, timber logging, plantations, and agriculture. In fact, only around seven percent of the historical range of a tiger is still intact today. That is an incredibly small and worrying amount. This can increase the number of conflicts between tigers, as they roman about and try to locate new habitats. Not only this, but genetic diversity can reduce because it can cause there to be inbreeding in small populations.

Since the tiger is an “umbrella species”, its conservation enables the conservation of their entire ecosystems. Several studies have shown that Tiger reserves harbor new species, which are found practically every year. Tiger reserves have also improved the water regimes in regions where they are located, improving groundwater tables and other water bodies, thus contributing favorably to the climate. This year marks the tenth International Tiger Day. On International Tiger Day, several countries discuss issues related to tiger conservation and also try to amass funds for wildlife preservation. Moreover, many celebrities also pitch in for International Tiger Day and try to spread awareness about the conditions of tigers using their massive social media presence. India is especially important for International Tiger Day 2020 as the country currently has 75% of all tigers on the planet. A lot of people are not aware of these threats, and so spreading the knowledge can help to make sure that we all do our bit to ensure that the tiger’s future is a fruitful one. There will be a lot of videos, infographics, and interesting pieces of content going around that you can share with others.

“Tiger is a symbol of Beauty, Bravery, Strength and Nationality. So Save the Tiger, Save the Nation’s Pride.”

Anuran vocal communications

In the scientific book, sounds of frogs and toads is often said to be ‘croaking’. Whatever their musical qualities, vocalizations are conspicuous features of behavior of most frogs and toads. Acoustic signalling has a great importance in the breeding ecology of most frogs. Acoustic data are used in taxonomic studies of frogs. Thus, researchers today are very interested in studying sounds produced by anurans to know about their behavior, study their evolution, monitoring population, comparison of species and find ways for their conservation.


In anurans, generally males are involved in bioacoustic signalling. Only a very few female and at very few times are found producing signals. Anuran vocal repertoires can be into various calls namely advertisement calls( mate calls), courtship calls( responsive calls), aggressive calls, release calls, defensive calls. These are useful in male-male and male- female communications. These sounds are also used by them to protect them from predators too. They can estimate distance between opponent and get warned.  Further, the produced sound defines the species, it’s size, it’s habitat , it’s dominance, etc in some way or other.

Advertisement calls are often referred to as mating calls and are principal signals given by males during breading season. Experiments have shown that females approach conspecific calls. Advertisement calls are often found to stimulate hormone production in females. It also expertises male’s position to other males.

The vocal behavior of male frogs often changes when females are nearby or are approaching. Courtship call are a sort of continuous trill( unlike two-note advertisement calls). These are simply increased call rates. Female courtship calls also exists. These are given in response to the calls of male, which tends to be at low intensity and therefore, are hard to hear. It enhances the ability of males and females to find each other.

Aggressive calls are produced as a sign of defence for their calling sites against conspecifics. These are often called territorial calls. Then there are release calls given when male anurans are clasped by other males. Further exists distress calls, which are generally loud screams to describe vocalisations given by frogs being attacked by predators. Alarm calls and defensive calls are to warn neighbours of danger or startle the predator, to allow victim to escape.

The pitch(determined by frequency) of sound is an indicator of anuran’s body size. The frogs with higher pitch are found to be small in size while the frogs having low-pitched calls are large and heavy. Call structure is an indicator of habitat of frogs( whether near waterfall or near stream or in forest or in open habitat). For ex: frogs living in dense forest are large in size and produce low pitched calls and vice versa. Thus, there also exists preference in calling site for different species. If male and female, both are at the same level, then high frequency components will suffer greater attenuation than low frequency components. But, if either caller or receiver is elevated, then differential loss of higher frequencies is reduced.


Comparison of frogs living in Amazonian forests with those in floating meadow habitats revealed that forest species have significantly lower-pitched calls. The forest species generally are larger than those in open areas, and call frequency decreases with increasing body size. Calls of many species probably are not adapted for long range propagation, but for ease of localization at short distances. Phylogenetic differences probably are important as well. Forest frogs have very different call structure than open-habitat frogs. They tend to have more narrowly tuned calls with lower pulse repetition rates than open habitat frogs. Call intensity is related to factors other than habitat structure. For ex: frogs that call in open habitats tend to call in much denser choruses than those in forested habitats, and competition among males should favor the evolution of very loud calls.

Thus, understanding sounds of anurans is a very interesting part of study and researchers are working on it, striving to discover more, finding ways to conserve some endangered species( like N. sahyadrensis).

Climate Forcing

Climate “forcing” are factors in the climate system that either increase or decrease the effects to the climate system.

• Positive forcing such as excess greenhouse gases warm the earth while negative forcing, such as the effects of most aerosols and volcanic eruptions, actually cool the earth.

• Atmospheric aerosols include volcanic dust, soot from the combustion of fossil fuels, particles from burning forests and mineral dust.

• Dark carbon-rich particles such as soot from diesel engines absorb sunlight and warm the atmosphere.

• Conversely, exhaust from high-sulphur coal or oil produce light aerosols that reflect sunlight back to space, producing a cooling effect. Aerosols that form naturally during volcanic eruptions cool the atmosphere. Large volcanic eruptions can eject enough ash into the atmosphere to lower temperature for a year or more until the sulfate particles settle out of the atmosphere.

Altering the Energy Balance

• The power of a process to alter the climate is estimated by its “radiative forcing,” the change in the Earth’s energy balance due to that process.

• Some climate forcings are positive, causing globally averaged warming, and some are negative, causing cooling. Some, such as from increased CO₂ concentration, are well known; others, such as from aerosols, are more uncertain.

Natural Forcing:

• Natural forcing include changes in the amount of energy emitted by the Sun, very slow variations in Earth’s orbit, and volcanic eruptions.

• Since the start of the industrial revolution, the only natural forcing with any long-term significance has been a small increase in solar energy reaching Earth. However, this change is not nearly enough to account for the current warming.

Human-Induced Forcing

• Climate forcing can also be caused by human activities. These activities include greenhouse gas and aerosol emissions from burning fossil fuels and modifications of the land surface, such as deforestation.

Human-Generated Greenhouse Gases

• Greenhouse gases are a positive climate forcing; that is, they have a warming effect. Carbon dioxide emitted from the burning of fossil fuel is presently the largest single climate forcing agent, accounting for more than half of the total positive forcing since 1750.

Human-Generated Aerosols

• Burning fossil fuels adds aerosols to the atmosphere. Aerosols are tiny particles in the atmosphere composed of many things, including water, ice, ash, mineral dust, or acidic droplets. Aerosols can deflect the Sun’s energy and impact the formation and lifetime of clouds. Aerosols are a negative forcing; that is, they have a cooling effect.

Causes of Climate Change

• While natural forcing do exist, they are not significant enough to explain the recent global warming. Human activities are very likely responsible for most of the recent warming.

Estimation of Each Gas

Each gas’s effect on climate change depends on

three main factors:

Concentration of each gas

Concentration, or abundance, is the amount of a particular gas in the air. Greenhouse gas concentrations are measured in parts per million, parts per billion, and even parts per trillion.

One part per million is equivalent to one drop of water diluted into about 13 gallons of liquid (roughly the fuel tank of a compact car).

Amount of time they stay in atmosphere

Each of these gases can remain in the atmosphere for different amounts of time, ranging from a few years to thousands of years.

All of these gases remain in the atmosphere long enough to become well mixed, meaning that the amount that is measured in the atmosphere

is roughly the same all over the world, regardless of the source of the emissions.

Strength of their impact

Some gases are more effective than others at making the planet warmer and “thickening the Earth’s blanket (green house gas)”.

 For each greenhouse gases Global Warming Potential (GWP) has been calculated to reflect how long it remains in the atmosphere, on average, and how strongly it absorbs energy.