Month: July 2022

FOREST FIRES

Uttarakhand lost 3416.2 hect. of forest area due to fires in 4 months.

According to the forest authorities 90% of the wildfire incident this year was triggered due to human activites.

Chilgoza Kinnaur district
  • The Chilgoza pine, a slow-growing trees with an average life of 150-200 years, is the only confier that bears nutritious edible nuts.
  • It is spread from Afghanistan to Northeast India in Indian subcontinent.
India’s forest fires are getting bigger (DTE)
  • A recent report has stated that the probablity of wildfire events similar to Australia 2019-20, Black Summer will, increase by 31-51% in future.
  • SOFR – 22% of forest cover in India falls under highly and extremely fire prone category.
  • IPCC 6th Assessment Report 2021 states that weather condition to wildfire (Hot, dry & windy) has become more frequent in some region & will continue to increase with higher levels of global warming.
  • Forest fires flaring up in unexpected places too, in drying peatlands and on thawing permafrost.
Pyrobhobia :- Desire to suppress the wildfires even the good one.
Types of fire
  1. Ground Fire :  Typically egnite in soil thick with organic matter that can feed the flames, like plant roots.
  2. Crown fire : Burn in the leaves and canopies of trees and shrubs.
  3. Surface fire : Burn in dead or dry vegetable/vegetation that is lying or growing just above the ground.
  4. Ground fire can smolden for a long time – even an entire season until the condition are rigid for them to grow to a surface fire or crown fire.
  5. Still wildfires are essential to the continued survival of some plant species. For e.g. Some tree cons need to be heated before they open & relax their seeds, Chapparal plants. like scrub oak requires fire before seeds germinate.
Fire, Forest & Future a crises
  • Even though forests make up only 10% of total area burned, their higher carbon storage capacity means that they are responsible for 1 quarter of all fire-related to CO2 emission.
  • Fires emit CO2 emission equivalent to European union every year.
Why are forest fires in hills Identify this summer.
  • According to FSI nearly 36% of India’s forests are prone to frequent fires.
  • forest fire season in India Last between Nov. to June. Higher fire incidents are reported in March, April & May due to ample availability of dry biomass (fuel land).
Forests Fires Hotspot in India
  • Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Chhattisgarh, Orisha, Maharastra, Madhya Pradesh, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh
Fold rise in intense forest fire
  • Swapping Trend – When traditional flood prone areass become highly drought prone.
  • India Ranked 7th among the countries most impacted by climatic conditions in 2021, According to Global climate Risk Index.
  • The study recorded making forest fires a disaster type under NDMA ( National Disaster Management Authority).
International Day of Forest
  21st, March Theme – Forests and Sustainable production & Consumption.

According to 2021 study of CEEW, climate change has made India & World more conducive for forest fires to spread, whatever be the source because of hot temp., low humidity and increased dry spells.

  • National Action Plan on forest fires (NAPFF) launched in 2018, helps in minimising F.F. by informing, enabling and empowering forest fringe communities & incentivizing them to work with the state forest Department.
  • MODIS (Moderates Resolution Imagine Spectroradiometer) satellite data for detecting active forest fires is also advised. (NASA)
Mains Question :
  1. “Forest fires are changing because we are changing the conditions in which it occurs.” critically evaluate.
Prelims Question :
  1. Consider the following statements-
  2. Swapping trends means when traditional flood prone areas become increasingly drought prone.
  3. Pyrophobia is a term used to define the desire to suppress the wildfires including the good ones.
  4.   Forests Fire prevention & Management Scheme is the only centrally funded programme specifically dedicated to assisting the states in dealing with forest fires.

Choose the correct option

  • (i) & (ii) only                               (b)  (ii) & (iii) Only

(c)  (i) & (iii) only                                       (d) (i), (ii) & (iii)

2. Consider the following statements regarding MODIS –

(i) MODIS is a Earth observing system developed under ISRO.

(ii) It is a system for weather monitoring.

(iii) VIIRs (Visible infrared imaging Radio meter Suite) is more efficient then    MODIS.

Choose the incorrect option.

  • (i) & (ii) only                               (b) (ii) & (iii) only

(c)  (i) & (iii) only                                       (d) None.

Submitted by : Akansha, Rupesh, Tanu & Kashvi

Green Hydrogen

Hydrogen

Hydrogen is one of the most abundant element on earth for a cleaner alternative fuel option.

Type of hydrogen depend upon the process of its formation.

  • Green hydrogen is produced by electrolysis of water using renewable energy (like solar, wind) and has a lower carbon footprint.
  • Brown hydrogen is produced using coal where the emission are released to the air.
  • Gray hydrogen is produced from natural gas where the associated emission are released to the air.
  • Blue hydrogen is produced from natural gas, where the emission are captured using carbon capture and storage.

Uses :  Hydrogen is an energy carrier, not an energy source and can deliver or store a tremandus amount of energy.

 Regarding heating and electricity, green hydrogen can replace natural gas and helps in reducing green house gas emissions. Also used in existing pipeline to power various domestic appliances 
Domestic usage 
Industrial  
 Hydrogen mainly used in chemical and petrochemical industry, as well as in steel Industry. Green hydrogen can prove to be a better attention in these industrial sector. 
Fuel Cell Fuel cells and battery convert chemical energy into electrical energy.A hydrogen fuel cell is an electro chemical device that converts specifically hydrogen into electrical energy.  
World Wide current status
  • Less then 1% of hydrogen produced is green hydrogen.
  • Manufacturing and deployment of electrolysers  will have to increase at an unprecedented rate by 2050 from the current capacity of 0.3 GW to almost 5000 G.W.
Indian Scenerio
  • Consumption of Hydrogen : India consumes about six million tonnes of hydrogen every year for the production of ammonia and methanol in industrial sectors, including fertilisers and refineries.
  • This could increase to 28 mn tonnes by 2050, Principally due to rising demand from the industry but also due to the expansion of Transport and power sectors.
  • Cost of Green Hydrogen : By 2030 the cost of green hydrogen is expected to complete with that of hydro carbon fuels (coal, crude oil, Natural gas)
  • The price will decrease further as production and sales increase. it is also projected that india’s hydrogen demand will increase five folds by 2050.
  • Exporter of Green hydrogen :  India will become a net exporter of green hydrogen by 2030 due to its cheap renewable energy tarrifs.

Benefits of Using Green hydrogen for India: Green hydrogen can drive “India’s Transition to clean energy”, combat “climate change”

  • Under the Paris Climate Agreement, India pledged to reduce the emission intensity of its economy by 33-35% from 2005 levels by 2030.
  • It will reduce Import dependency of fossil fuels.
  • The localisation of electrolyser production and the development of green hydrogen projects can create a new green technologies market in india worth $ 18-20 bn and thousands of jobs.
Potential
  • India has a favourable geographic location and abundance of sunlight and wind for the production of green hydrogen.
  • Green hydrogen technology is being promoted in sectors where direct electrification isn’t feasible.
  • Heavy duty, long range transport, some industrial sectors and long- term storage in the power sector are some of these sectors.
  • The ministry of new and Renewable energy (MNRE) has circulated a draft cabinet note to establish a hydrogen ecosystem in India.
  • The nascent stage of this industry allows for the creation of regional hubs that export high value green products and engineering, procurement and construction services.
Challenges
  • Economic Sustainability :  One of the biggest challenges faced by the industry for using hydrogen commercially is the economic sustainability of extracting green hydrogen.
  • For transportation fuel cells, hydrogen must be cost-competitive with convectional fuels and technologies on a per-mile basis

High cost and lack of supporting Infrastructure :

  • Fuel cells which convert hydrogen fuel to usable energy for cars are still expensive.
  • The hydrogen station infrastructure needed to refuel hydrogen fuel cell cars is still widely under developed.
Government Step The Union Budget for 2021-22 has announced a  National Hydrogen Energy Mission (NHM) that will draw up a road map for using hydrogen as an energy source.
Green Hydrogen Policy
  • Under the policy, the government is offering to set up manufacturing zones for production, connectivity to the ISTS (inter-state transmission system) on priority basis, and free transmission for 25 yrs if the production facility is commissioned before June 2025.
  • This mean that a green hydrogen producer will be able to set up a solar power plant in Rajasthan to supply renewable energy to a green hydrogen Plant in Assam and would not be required to pay any inter-state transmission charges.
  • Besides, the producers will be allowed to set up bunkers near ports for storage of green ammonia for export by shipping.
  • Manufactures of green hydrogen and ammonia are allowed to purchase renewable power from the power exchange or set up Renewable Energy (RE) Capacity themselves or through any other developer, anywhere.
  • It provides facility for producers to bank any surplus renewable energy generated with discoms (Power distribution companies) for upto 30 days and use it as required.

(Submitted by: Akash, Deevanshu, Vandana & Harsh)