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Climate Change

Climate change is the current rapid warming of earth’s climate caused by human activity. This is an expression that may be used in place of global warming in some cases but the difference between them is quite notable. When we want to describe climate change, we will be required to touch on the elements that bring about changes such as rainfall, humidity, weather events, temperature etc.

According to NASA, 1“Climate is the usual weather of a place. Climate can be different for different seasons. A place might be mostly warm and dry in the summer. The same place may be cool and wet in the winter. Different places can have different climates”.

Global Change:

This is a term used to describe the warming which occurs on earth in general. When the average temperature of the planet is exceeded by a very large percentage, this is what normally constitutes global warming. This is a state that can occur naturally or due to human activities on earth. With an increase in the activities of greenhouses on our planet, global warming has become more prevalent because of the gases that are released as a result. Such activities normally trap energy that is released from the sun here and prevents it from being released into space as is required.

Greenhouse Effect:

Climatic changes and global warming are normally caused by gases emitted from greenhouses. These gases normally prevent radiation which is released by the sun from leaving the earth’s atmosphere into space hence causing a rise in the overall temperature. As a result, the climate is also altered as well. The human activities that mostly lead to the greenhouse effects are: Burning wood, coal, natural gas, and even coal. Even though some of the greenhouse gases are manmade, some occur naturally and the main ones on that regard are: water vapor and carbon dioxide.

Ozone Layer Depletion:

The ozone layer is a very thin layer that is located at the upper part of the earth’s atmosphere and its main purposes is to absorb the sun’s radiation. When the ozone layer is depleted, this means that more of the harmful UV (ultra-violet) rays will penetrate the earth’s surface causing massive effects to the growth of crops. Moreover, humans are also affected by this since the UV rays can cause skin cancer and other numerous health problems as well.

Solutions For Controlling Climate Change:

  1. Burning Fossil Fuel:

    The first challenge is eliminating the burning of coal, oil, and eventually, natural gas. This is perhaps the most forbidding challenge as inhabitant of richer nations literally eat, wear, works, play and even sleep on the products made from such fossilized sunshine. And citizen of developing nations want and arguably deserve the same comforts.
     
  2. Upgrade Infrastructure:

    Buildings worldwide contribute around one third of all greenhouse gas emissions (43 percent in the U.S. alone), even though investing in thicker insulation and other cost-effective, temperature-regulating steps can save money in the long-run. Electric grids are at capacity or overloaded, but power demands continue to rise. And bad roads can lower the fuel economy of even the most efficient vehicle. Investing in new infrastructure, or radically upgrading existing highways and transmission lines, would help cut greenhouse gas emissions and drive economic growth in developing countries.
     
  3. Consume less:

    The easiest way to cut back on greenhouse gas emissions is simply to buy less stuff. Whether by forgoing an automobile or employing a reusable grocery sack, cutting back on consumption results in fewer fossil fuels being burned to extract, produce and ship products around the globe.
     
  4. Stop cutting down trees:

    Every year, 33 million acres of forests are cut down. Timber harvesting in the tropics alone contributes 1.5 billion metric tons of carbon to the atmosphere that represents 20 percent of human-made greenhouse gas emissions and a source that could be avoided relatively easily.
Improved agricultural practices along with paper recycling and forest management—balancing the amount of wood taken out with the amount of new trees growing—could quickly eliminate this significant chunk of emissions.

Case Laws:
2M/S Shri Hari Mines vs State Of Rajasthan
Date: 9 April, 2019

Indisputably, pursuant to the NIT issued by the State Government being successful bidders for identified lease hold areas of mineral Bajri, LoIs were issued in petitioners' favour under the Rules of 1986 and they were directed to comply with the conditions specified. It is also not in dispute that for execution of mining lease besides other conditions, the submission of EC obtained from MoEF was a pre-requisite condition, which the petitioners failed to obtain and the matter remained pending with MoEF.

However, pursuant to interim order dated 25.11.13 passed by the Supreme Court in SLP No.34134/2013, 82 LoI holders, who had applied for EC, were permitted to excavate Bajri in accordance with the notification dated 21.6.12 issued by the State Government under Rule 65 of the Rules of 1986, till the end of February, 2014, which was continued vide order dated 27.3.14 passed by the Supreme Court, till the matter is heard and further order is passed.

Later, vide order dated 16.11.17, the Supreme Court restrained all the 82 LoI holders from continuing with the mining operation of sand and Bajri unless replenishment study is completed and the climate change and environment clearance is granted or rejected after full and dispassionate consideration by (54 of 66) [CW-2996/2018 MoEF. It is the common ground between the parties that pursuant to the orders passed by the Supreme Court as aforesaid, the petitioners, who were to be granted mining lease for maximum period of five years with no further renewal clause, continued to operate the mining areas for the mineral Bajri for a period of about four years.

Conclusion:
Climate change presents a major and growing challenge to the world as a whole. While the concerns that generates are important now, their implications are even greater for future generations that will bear the consequences of current actions or inaction. Strong rapid action to reduce emissions is required in order to alter the future path of human-induced warming. Action is also needed to begin to adapt to the warming that is already occurring and that will continue.

The findings of this first Climate Impact Assessment provide a scientific basis upon which decision makers can consider, craft, and implement appropriate actions to respond to this important and far-reaching challenge.

References:
  1. https://www.nasa.gov.in
  2. https://www.indiankanoon.org

    Written by Amish Kumar. From Noida international university.

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