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IMD predicts intense heat waves this summer {downtoearth,}

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has warned of a heat wave in the coming weeks. According to forecasts, temperatures are likely to rise above 40 degrees Celsius in most parts of the country and heat wave-like conditions are likely to develop in Gujarat, Odisha, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.

Such extreme temperature events are becoming a norm in India and other sub-tropical countries around the world. According to reports, climate change is likely to have caused this increase in incidences and severity of heat waves.

IMD estimates that average temperatures between March and May in recent years, have increased by 1-1.2°C above the 100-year-average. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), as average temperatures increase, outlier events like heat waves—defined by the IMD as an increase of 5°C above normal temperatures—are likely to become more severe. This means that they will entail higher temperatures and will last longer.

In the past, heat waves have caused loss of life, increased morbidity and productivity losses. According to estimates, more than 4,000 people have died due to heat waves between 2013 and 2016 in India. Additionally, productivity losses worth US $450 billion will be incurred due to extreme temperatures in India by 2030.

Increasing temperatures also necessitate increased use of air conditioning systems, while also reducing their energy efficiency. Heat waves may, thus, increase energy consumption and contribute to increasing instances of power outages across the country. These losses may increase further due to the interaction of heat waves with other climate extremities.

According to reports, in dryer regions like Gujarat, the increasing intensity and frequency of droughts may also contribute to increase in the intensity and duration of heat waves. This is because decrease in the level of soil moisture caused by droughts may lead to an increase in air temperatures, thus intensifying heat waves.

Restricting heat waves and climate change effects

Such events becoming easier to predict, so government should take adaptive measures to minimise losses. Prominent adaptation measures include improving forecast and alerts regarding high temperature periods, increasing access to cooling spaces like public buildings, strengthening public health institutions to deal with heat stress-related ailments, minimising water and electricity supply cuts during heat waves, and implementing green building guidelines that ensure better ventilation and lower natural temperatures inside buildings.

International effort to combat climate change, however, has suffered a severe blow recently. The newly elected government in the United States has been regressive on the climate action front, with recent orders curtailing efforts to curb greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions especially in the power sector. This stance by the world’s largest historical GHG emitter may negatively influence the commitment of the international community to restrict warming to 2°C as stated in the Paris agreement.

Concerted efforts by all parties are needed to ensure that the political developments in USA do not derail actions to combat climate change. India’s role should be to address extreme weather and other impacts of climate change, while ensuring that developed countries do their share based on their historical responsibilities.

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Current Affairs MCQ for UPSC Exams – 21 December 2016

Q.1- Which of the following is/are correct regarding Nirbhaya missile?

1. It is a cruise missile
2. It is hypersonic in speed
A. 1 only
B. 2 only
C. Both
D. None

Q.2- Khanjar-III is military exercise between which of the following countries?

A. India and Russia
B. Russia and China
C. India and Kyrgyzstan
D. Russia and Afghanistan

Q.3- UPI has been in news recently, what is the full form of UPI?

A. Unified Payment Interchange
B. Unified Payment Interface
C. Unified process interchange
D. Unified process interface
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Answer  1-A, 2 -C, 3-B

Cloud seeding

Demonstrating the function of the flare rack that carries silver iodide for cloud-seeding through an aircraft. 
Water is essential for life on the earth. Precipitation from the skies is the only source for it. India and the rest of Asia are dependent on the monsoons for rains. While the South West Monsoon is the main source for India as a whole, Tamil Nadu and coastal areas of South Andhra Pradesh get the benefit of the North East Monsoon, which is just a less dependable beat on the reversal of the South West Monsoon winds.

Indian Polity Elections (MCQ )

1. Who of the following has the responsibility of the registration of voters
a) Individual voters
b) Government
c) Election commission
d) Corporations


2. Democracy exists in India, without peoples participation and co operation democracy will fail. This implies that
a) Government should compel people to participate and cooperate with it
b) People from the government
c) People should participate and cooperate with the government
d) India should opt for the presidential system


3. Which of the following are not the functions of the election commission
1) Conduct of election for the post of the speaker and the deputy speaker, Lok sabha and the deputy chairman, Rajya sabha
2) Conduct of elections to the state legislative assemblies
3) Deciding on all doubts and disputes arising out of elections

a) 1 and 2
b) 1 and 3
c) 2 and 3
d) 2

4. Which of the following electoral systems have not been adopted for various elections in India
1) System of direct elections on the basis of adult suffrage
2…