DESPITE DECADES OF DEFORESTATION, THE EARTH IS GETTING GREENER
While the news coming out of forests is often dominated by deforestation and habitat loss, research published today in Nature Climate Change shows that the world has actually got greener over the past decade.
Despite ongoing deforestation in South America and Southeast Asia, we found that the decline in these regions has been offset by recovering forests outside the tropics, and new growth in the drier savannas and shrublands of Africa and Australia.
Plants absorb around a quarter of the carbon dioxide that people release into the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels. With a greening globe, more plants may mean more absorption of carbon dioxide. If so, this will slow but not stop climate change.
However, questions remain over how long plants can keep pace with our increasing emissions in a warmer climate.
INDIA CONDEMNS BARBARIC TERROR ATTACK IN KENYA
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Friday condemned the barbaric terror attack in a Kenyan university campus, adding that the country stands in solidarity with the bereaved families.
"The Government of India strongly condemns this barbaric attack on Kenyan university campus. We stand in solidarity with bereaved families and injured," said MEA spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin.
Earlier in the day, Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Narendra Modi also condemned the terror attack by the al-Shabab Islamist group which left nearly 150 students dead.
The militants burst inside the university campus before dawn and singled out the Christian students and shot them. The university was set up in 2011 and is the only public university in the region.
MESSENGER OF GOD’ SCREENING BANNED IN PUNJAB
Following the release of controversial film ‘Messenger of God’, featuring Dera Sacha Sauda sect head Gurmit Ram Rahim Singh, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal said that the screening of the movie has been banned on the advisory of the Government of India. Assembly of people has been banned at few places in Sirsa to maintain law and order in the wake of protests by Sikh organizations against the film. Sirsa is the place where the headquarter of Dera Sacha Sauda is located.
Interacting with the media persons on the sidelines of the Sangat Darshan programme of Lambi Assembly segment in Muktsar district, the CM said that the reports of intelligence agencies of both the State and Centre governments had clearly said that the release of this movie could have led to serious repercussions in terms of law and order problem in the state. CM Badal said, “We have received advisory from the Central government to ban this movie and thus the state government acted accordingly in the larger public interest.”
CABINET GIVES NOD TO ORDINANCE ON COAL, INSURANCE BILL
The Union Cabinet has approved ordinance on Insurance Bill and Coal. With Coal Mines Bill yet to be cleared by the Parliament, the government re-promulgated the ordinance. Earlier, an ordinance on coal was introduced on October 20 after the Top Court scrapped over 200 coal block allocations.
It was valid till the January 4 as the life-span of an ordinance is only six weeks since the inception of a Parliament session. The bills could not be taken up in the Rajya Sabha, whose functioning was paralyzed in the just-concluded winter session. An indication about the insurance sector was given by Minister of State for Finance Jayant Sinha when he said government has to consider "all possibilities". The Insurance Laws Amendment Bill, 2008 could not be taken up for discussion despite being approved by the Select Committee of the Upper House because of the uproar over the conversion and other issues.
GHOST PARTICLE FOUND IN SPACE PROVES ALIEN LIFE EXISTENCE
Researchers have discovered an oddly microscopic structure in the outer reaches of the Earth's atmosphere, which hints at the existence of alien life. The living balloon that supposedly carried microscopic alien organisms has been tagged as "ghost particle". A never-before seen picture, revealing a spectral-like 'ghost particle' discovered in debris gathered from outer space, hints at existence of aliens.
Researchers claim that the particle resembles a chiffon scarf with the width of a human hair and a ghostly appearance. The particle was found in dust and particulate matter 27 kilometers above in the Earth’s stratosphere. The particle is biological in nature, and is made of carbon and oxygen. They appear on the sampling stubs in an absolutely pristine condition with no contamination like pollen, grass or pollution particles.