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Prelim Bits 11-11-2022 | UPSC Daily Current Affairs

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November 11, 2022

Mangrove Alliance for Climate

At the 27th Session of Conference of Parties (COP27), the Mangrove Alliance for Climate (MAC) was launched with India as a partner.

  • Mangrove Alliance for Climate (MAC) is an intergovernmental alliance that works on a voluntary basis for planting, conserving and restoring mangroves.
  • Members – MAC is led by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Indonesia and includes India, Sri Lanka, Australia, Japan, and Spain.
  • Aim - To educate and spread awareness worldwide on the role of mangroves in curbing global warming and its potential as a solution for climate change.
  • Mangrove are trees and shrub that can live in intertidal water in coastal areas and host diverse marine life.
  • They are mainly found in tropical and sub-tropical latitudes.
  • Significance of Mangrove - Mangrove trees can grow in saline waters and are excellent carbon sinks.
  • 80% of the global fish populations depend on mangrove ecosystems.
  • Threats - infrastructure projects, shifting coastlines, coastal erosion and storms.

Mangroves can sequester up to 4 times more carbon than tropical rainforests.

India and mangrove

  • India contributes to nearly half of the total mangrove cover in South Asia.
  • Sundarbans is the world’s largest mangrove ecosystem in the world.
  • The highest percentage of mangrove cover in India - West Bengal, Gujarat and Andaman and Nicobar islands.
  • Maharashtra, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Goa and Kerala too have mangrove.

References

  1. The Indian Express - What is the Mangrove Alliance for Climate?
  2. Business Standard - What is the Mangrove Alliance for Climate?

Vanuatu

Climate change is an existential threat in the islands of the Pacific says Vanuatu led group of small Pacific islands.

  • Vanuatu, officially the Republic of Vanuatu, is a Melanesian island nation located in the South Pacific Ocean.
  • The capital of the Republic of Vanuatu is Port Vila.
  • Vanuatu is a Y-shaped archipelago of 83 islands and is north-east of Australia.
  • Vanuatu is recognized as a distinct terrestrial ecoregion, known as the Vanuatu rain forests.
  • Vanuatu is part of the Australasia Eco zone.
  • Vanuatu is under existential threat affecting livelihoods, security and well-being due to climate change.
  • Its sea level is rising at twice the average global rate, and would continue to rise through the 21st century.
  • But, it contributes less than 0.0018% of global greenhouse gas emissions and is a carbon-negative country.

Melanesia

  • Melanesia has about 2,000 islands in the South Pacific Ocean.
  • Melanesia is a biodiversity hotspot and the climate of Melanesia is tropically humid.
  • Bismarck Archipelago, Fiji, Maluku Islands, New Caledonia, New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Torres Strait Islands and Vanuatu are traditionally considered as part of Melanesia.

melanesia

References

  1. Down To Earth - Why a chain of tiny Pacific islands wants an ICJ’s opinion
  2. The Hindu - Vanuatu’s big plea does little to arrest climate change

CE20 Cryogenic Engine

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has successfully conducted the hot test of CE20 cryogenic engine.

  • CE20 cryogenic engine is indigenously developed for LVM3.
  • A 3D printed LOX and LH2 turbine exhaust casings were also inducted in the engine for the first time.
  • The hot test was conducted at an uprated thrust level of 21.8 tonne for the first time.
  • LVM-3 can carry up to 4 tonnes to a geostationary orbit and up to 6 tonnes to a Low Earth Orbit.
  • This uprated thrust level will enhance the LVM3 payload capability up to 450 kg with additional propellant loading.
  • LVM3 is the heaviest launch vehicle of ISRO.

LVM3 is a three-stage vehicle with two solid motor strap-ons, a liquid propellant core stage and a cryogenic upper stage.

References

  1. The Hindu - ISRO’s cryogenic engine passes hot test
  2. Hindustan Times - ISRO successfully conducts hot test of CE20 cryogenic engine
  3. ISRO - Successful CE20 uprated Engine Hot Test

African Carbon Markets Initiative

A new initiative putting carbon credits up for sale in African countries was launched during the COP27 to the UNFCCC in Egypt.

  • Carbon Credit - A carbon credit is a special permit that gives the user or buyer express rights to emit a given amount of carbon dioxide or other greenhouse gases.
  • Carbon credits trading is one of the many technical interventions used to reduce the amount or concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.
  • Africa and Carbon credit - Africa currently produces only a tiny percentage of its carbon credit potential.
  • Carbon markets unlock billions in climate finance needed to support economies of African countries.
  • The Initiative - African Carbon Markets Initiative is led by a 13-member steering committee of African leaders, Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) and carbon credit experts.
  • African Carbon Markets Initiative (ACMI) aims to
  1. Rally the world towards more ambitious climate action,
  2. Expand Africa’s participation in voluntary carbon markets and
  3. Create jobs while protecting biodiversity.
  • Target - The African voluntary carbon markets targets to provide 300 million carbon credits every year by 2030 and 1.5 billion credits annually by 2050.
  • The initiative intends to promote demand for
    1. Existing credits,
    2. Credits under development,
    3. Yet to come products and innovative project types.
  • The carbon credit raised from ACMI would meet Africa’s contentious climate finance needs.

References

  1. Down To Earth - African countries launch ‘game-changing’ carbon credits initiative
  2. The Guardian - Nigeria, others launch new Africa carbon markets initiative at COP 27

LOFTID Mission

NASA completed the technology demonstration of its Low-Earth Orbit Flight Test of an Inflatable Decelerator (LOFTID) mission.

  • The Low-Earth Orbit Flight Test of an Inflatable Decelerator (LOFTID) orbital flight test was the next step of the HIAD program.
  • The LOFTID mission demonstrates the re-entry of the inflatable decelerator Hypersonic Inflatable Aerodynamic Decelerator (HIAD) from the Lower-Earth Orbit.
  • In LOFTID a small re-entry vehicle is attached to the HIAD aeroshell.
  • After reorienting towards earth, the shell inflates and separate from the upper stage of the rocket to enter the atmosphere.
  • LOFTID demonstrates the inflatable aeroshell, heat shield’s ability to slow down and survive re-entry.
  • LOFTID could potentially help land astronauts on Mars in the future.

HIAD Aeroshell

  • Aeroshell is a type of heat shield used for atmospheric re-entry.
  • Traditionally NASA relied on rigid aeroshells but over a decade has developed inflatable aeroshells.
  • This inflatable aeroshell is called Hypersonic Inflatable Aerodynamic Decelerator (HIAD).
  • HIAD is a large deployable inflatable aeroshell protected by a flexible heat shield.
  • The inflatable structure is made with a stack of pressurised concentric rings that are strapped to form a cone-shaped structure.
  • Advantages of HIAD - The HIAD allows to carry much heavier payloads.
  • The drag is more than rigid aeroshell due to their large size.
  • The deceleration process starting at higher altitudes than traditional aeroshells.
  • The entire system is foldable, packable, and deployable thus take up less room on rockets.
  • The technology is scalable to both crewed and large robotic missions to Mars.

References

  1. The Indian Express - NASA completes LOFTID technology demonstration
  2. The New York times - NASA Launched an Inflatable Flying Saucer
  3. NASA - Low-Earth Orbit Flight Test of an Inflatable Decelerator
  4. NASA - Hypersonic Test of Inflatable Decelerator
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