19th December 2020

Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI)

Recently, the Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare digitally addressed an event by Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI) and UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR).

  • The event was themed around ‘Build Back Better: Building resilient health infrastructure and supply chains’.
  • The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (SFDRR) highlights the role of improved disaster resilience, especially of infrastructure, as a cornerstone for sustainable development.
  • While inaugurating the Asian Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction, the Prime Minister of India announced that India would work with partner countries and key stakeholders in launching a “Coalition” for disaster resilient infrastructure.
  • It was launched by the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the 2019 UN Climate Action Summit in September 2019.
  • The Government of India has been engaging with national governments, multilateral development banks, United Nations agencies, the private sector and academia to build the case for investing in resilient infrastructure.
    • It is a collaboration of Government of India, UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, World Bank, the UN Development Programme and the Global Commission on Adaptation.
  • The members of CDRI are Afghanistan, Australia, Bhutan, Fiji, Germany, Italy, Indonesia, India, Japan, Mauritius, Maldives, Mongolia, Nepal, Sri Lanka, United Kingdom and United States.

Purpose of CDRI

  • The Coalition would address a common challenge of building resilience into infrastructure systems, particularly in the context of increasing disaster risk in the face of climate change.
  • The Coalition would provide access to good practices to develop appropriate standards as well as regulatory mechanisms to manage infrastructure development in a manner that fosters resilience.
  • The Coalition would also serve as a platform where knowledge is generated and exchanged on different aspects of disaster resilience of infrastructure.
  • It will bring together a multitude of stakeholders i.e. governments, private sector, academic research institutions and international organisations.

UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR)

  • It oversees the implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030.
  • It is supporting countries in its implementation, monitoring and sharing what works in reducing existing risk and preventing the creation of new risk.

Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction

  • The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 (Sendai Framework) was the first major agreement of the post-2015 development agenda.
  • It provides Member States with concrete actions to protect development gains from the risk of disaster.
  • The Sendai Framework works hand in hand with the other 2030 Agenda agreements, including The Paris Agreement on Climate Change, The Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development, the New Urban Agenda, and the Sustainable Development Goals.
  • It was endorsed by the UN General Assembly following the 2015 Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (WCDRR).

 

Mission Purvodaya

Recently, the Union Minister of Steel has emphasized the role of SAIL steel plants in Mission Purvodaya to drive development of eastern India.

  • The Steel Ministry has said that the eastern belt has the potential to add over 75 percent of the country’s incremental steel capacity envisioned by the National Steel Policy.
  • It is expected that out of the 300 Million Tonne capacity by 2030-31, over 200 Million Tonne can come from this region alone.
  • The Eastern India is a focus area for the government and about half of aspirational districts are in this region which is becoming hotspots of socio-economic development.
  • The programme is aimed at accelerated development of eastern India through establishment of integrated steel hub.
  • Under the mission, the government said it will enhance capacity through easing the setup of greenfield steel plants, develop steel clusters near integrated steel plants as well as demand centres.
  • The focus will be on eastern states of India (Odisha, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and West Bengal) and the northern part of Andhra Pradesh which collectively holds 80% of the country’s iron ore, 100% of coking coal and a significant portion of chromite, bauxite and dolomite reserves.
  • Japan is the partner country who will guide India in making Indian steel ecosystem bigger both in qualitative and quantitative terms.

Significance of Mission Purvodaya

  • The mission will drive India’s march towards five trillion dollar economy set by the government.
  • Through this programme, the government aims to transform logistics and utilities infrastructure which would change the socio-economic landscape in the eastern India.

 

National Steel Policy 2017

  • The policy is nested within the government’s overall aspirational target of more than doubling the domestic steel capacity to 300 MTPA by FY2031
  • It envisages investment to the tune of ₹10-lakh crore to scale up crude steel production capacity to 300 MT by 2030-31.
    • To achieve the NSP target of 300 MT of steel capacity by FY2031, India would need to set up fresh capacities of 12 million tonnes (MT) every year till 2031.

 

Yogasana as a Competitive Sport

Recently, the Ministry of AYUSH (MoA) and Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports have announced the formal recognition of Yogasana as a competitive sport.

  • The Government of India traced the origins of Yogasana competitions to the Indian Yoga tradition, where such competitions have been held for centuries.
  • The Government decision to recognise Yogasana as a competitive sport comes after 3-4 years of wide consultations with the stakeholders of the Yoga sector.
  • The National Board for Promotion and Development of Yoga and Naturopathy (NDPDYN) of MoA, in its 5th meeting held in July 2019 recommended to recognise Yogasana as a competitive sport.

Significance of recognizing Yogasana as a Competitive Sport

  • Yogasana is an integral and important component of Yoga, which is psycho-physical in nature and popular across the globe for its efficacy in fitness and general wellness.
  • Yogasana becoming a sport will also ensure new technologies and new strategies being inducted into the disciplines, to benefit our athletes and officials towards building fruitful and fulfilling careers in this field.
  • The competitions that will arise out of the recognition of Yogasana as a sport will enhance interest in Yoga among people around the globe.
  • The government is planning to include Yogasana as a Sport discipline in Khelo India and in the University Games and we will also pitch it at the National Games.

Roadmap for implementing Yogasana as a Competitive Sport

  • The proposed events for both men and women include Traditional Yogasana, Artistic Yogasana (Single), Artistic Yogasana (Pair), Rhythmic Yogasana (Pair), Free Flow/Group Yogasana, Individual All Round.
  • The also informed the following steps or activities will form part of the road map and the future development of Yogasana Sport:
    • A pilot Yogasana Competition named as National Individual Yogasana Sports Championship” (Virtual Mode) to be held in early 2021
    • Launching of an Annual Calendar of competitions, events and programs of Yogasana sport
    • Development of Automated Scoring System for the Yogasana Championship
    • Courses for Coaches, Referees, Judges and Directors of competitions
    • Coaching camps for players
    • Launch of a League of Yogasana, to ensure a career and social status for performers, experts and practitioners, to create Sports Stars among Yogasana athletes.
    • To introduce Yogasana as a Sport discipline in National Games, Khelo India and international sports events.
    • Steps to create job opportunities for Yogasana athletes.

 

Disturbance from North Atlantic Ocean

Recently, a team from the Centre for Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences (CAOS), Indian Institute of Science (IISc) has suggested that planetary wave from the North Atlantic is capable of derailing the Indian monsoon.

  • The findings suggest that modelling efforts ought to focus on including the influence of mid-latitudes, in addition to the Pacific and Indian oceans, for getting a better handle on predictability of the monsoon, its variability as well as droughts.
  • The research team analysed daily rainfall during the two categories of droughts from 1900 to 2015 and noticed dramatic differences in the evolution of rainfall deficit. 
  • The rainfall deficit in El Niño droughts sets in early around mid-June and becomes progressively worse and during non-El Niño droughts there is a moderate decrease in June rainfall, followed by signs of recovery during mid-July to mid-August.

Impact of Disturbance from North Atlantic on Indian Monsoon

  • The interaction between upper-level winds and deep cyclonic vorticity anomalies located above anomalously cold North Atlantic waters during late August to early September results in an atmospheric disturbance.
  • The disturbance is called the Rossby wave which curves in towards India and, apparently squeezed in by the Tibetan Plateau, disrupts the flow of the monsoon winds.
    • The oceanic and atmospheric Rossby waves, also known as planetary waves, naturally occur largely due to the Earth’s rotation.

 

National Rail Plan

Recently, the Indian Railways has issued the National Rail Plan.

  • The objectives of the Plan are:
    • To create capacity ahead of demand by 2030, which in turn would cater to growth in demand right up to 2050.
      • The plan also aims to increase the modal share of Railways from 27% currently to 45% in freight by 2030 as part of a national commitment to reduce Carbon emission and to continue to sustain it.
    • To assess the actual demand in freight and passenger sectors, a yearlong survey was conducted over hundred representative locations by survey teams spread all over the country.
    • Forecast growth of traffic in both freight and passenger year on year up to 2030 and on a decadal basis up to 2050.
    • Formulate strategies based on both operational capacities and commercial policy initiatives to increase modal share of the Railways in freight to 45% by 2030.
    • Reduce transit time of freight substantially by increasing average speed of freight trains from present 22Kmph to 50Kmph.
    • Reduce overall cost of Rail transportation by nearly 30% and pass on the benefits to the customers.
    • Map the growth in demand on the Indian Railway route map and simulate the capacity behaviour of the network in future.
  • The Vision 2024 of the National Rail Plan has been launched for accelerated implementation of certain critical projects by 2024 such as:
    • 100% electrification,
    • Multitracking of congested routes,
    • Upgradation of speed to 160 kmph on Delhi-Howrah and Delhi-Mumbai routes,
    • Upgradation of speed to 130kmph on all other Golden Quadrilateral-Golden Diagonal (GQ/GD) routes and
    • Elimination of all Level Crossings on all GQ/GD route

Significance of National Rail Plan

  • It is the first time that the business plan and the infrastructure development plan of the Railways is jointly planned and developed on a single platform.
  • It is a long term strategic plan which has been developed to plan infrastructural capacity enhancement along with strategies to increase modal share of the Railways.
  • Post 2030, the revenue surplus generated would be adequate to finance future capital investment and also take the burden of debt service ratio of the capital already invested.
  • The National Rail Plan will be a common platform for all future infrastructural, business and financial planning of the Railways.
  • The plan also proposes to eliminate waiting lists in passenger trains by running more trains.
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