- WHO launched plan ‘REPLACE’ to eliminate trans fat in foods by 2023
- The World Health Organization (WHO) has launched a comprehensive plan to eliminate industrially-produced artificial trans fats from the global food supply by 2023.
- The UN body has released a step by step guide for the industry to eliminate trans fats from the food.
- The guide, called REPLACE, has six actions, which include-
(a) REview of dietary sources of trans fats
(b) Promoting replacement with healthier fats
(c) Setting up a regulatory framework
(d) Assessing and monitoring trans fats content in food
(e) Creating awareness and enforcing the regulation
(f) Enforce compliance with policies and regulations.
What are the issues with trans fat?
- For long, industrially-produced trans fats in food have been linked to health problems.
- Consumption of trans fats increases the level of bad LDL-cholesterol which is an accepted biomarker of cardiovascular diseases.
- The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that trans fats lead to more than 500,000 deaths due to cardiovascular disease.
- It has been seen that diets high in trans fat can increase the risk of heart disease by 21 percent and deaths by 28 percent.
Why is the industry produced trans fat are more harmful?
- Though natural trans fats from dairy products are also part of the diet, maximum consumption is in the form of industrially-produced trans fats.
- Industrially-produced trans fats are contained in hardened vegetable fats such as margarine and ghee and are often present in snack, baked, and fried foods.
- Manufacturers often use them as they have a longer shelf life than other fats.
- There are two broad types of trans fats found in foods: naturally-occurring and artificial trans fats.
- Naturally-occurring trans fats are produced in the gut of some animals and foods made from these animals (e.g., milk and meat products) may contain small quantities of these fats.
- Artificial trans fats (or trans fatty acids) are created in an industrial process that adds hydrogen to liquid vegetable oils to make them more solid.
Source- DD News + Down to Earth
- ‘Samarth’- Scheme for Capacity Building in Textile Sector
- A meeting of stakeholders on Samarth – Scheme for Capacity Building in Textile Sector under the Skill India Mission was held in New Delhi to familiarize the stakeholders about the scheme and its guidelines.
- Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved the scheme on December 20, 2017.
- The scheme is intended to provide demand-driven, placement oriented National Skills Qualifications Framework (NSQF) compliant skilling programmes to incentivize and supplement the efforts of the industry in creating jobs in the textiles sectors.
- The broad objective of the new scheme is to skill the youth for gainful and sustainable employment in the textile sector covering the entire value chain of textiles, excluding spinning and weaving.
- Government announces national wind-solar hybrid policy
- The government announced a national wind-solar hybrid policy, which seeks to promote new projects as well as hybridisation of the existing ones.
- The government has set an ambitious target of achieving 175 gigawatts (gw) of installed capacity from renewable energy sources by 2022, which includes 100 gw of solar and 60 gw of wind power capacity.
- The policy provides a comprehensive framework to promote large grid-connected wind-solar photovoltaic (PV) hybrid system for optional and efficient utilisation of transmission infrastructure and land.
- The policy will help in reducing the variability in renewable power generation and achieving better grid stability.
- The policy provides for the procurement of power from a hybrid project on the tariff-based transparent bidding process for which government entities may invite bids.
- Under the policy which is first, the government will extend all fiscal and financial incentives available to wind and solar power projects to hybrid projects.
Source- Economic Times
- Indo-Pacific infrastructure forum launched to tap private sector in India, US, Japan
- An Indo-Pacific trilateral infrastructure forum has been launched to find new, creative and efficient ways of leveraging the power of the private sector in India, the US and Japan to fill the massive gap in infrastructure and connectivity in the region.
- It is launched by the US Chamber of Commerce’s US-India Business Council (USIBC) along with US-Japan Business Council, the Indo-Pacific Infrastructure Trilateral Forum.
- It is a private sector platform that is seeking to partner with some government initiatives.
Source- Economic Times
- Wildlife network “SAWEN” of South Asian countries
- The South Asia Wildlife Enforcement Network (SAWEN), an inter-governmental wildlife law enforcement agency, in its first-ever meeting in India, adopted many resolutions to curb wildlife crime in the region.
- During the meet, six proposals, including tracking of wildlife smuggling route, review of existing laws and a structure for the organisation were tabled.
South Asia Wildlife Enforcement Network (SAWEN)
- South Asia Wildlife Enforcement Network (SAWEN) is an inter-governmental wildlife law enforcement support body of South Asian countries namely – Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
- SAWEN was launched in Bhutan in 2011 and in 2016 the Union Cabinet gave permission to adopt the statute of SAWEN.
- It focuses on policy harmonization; institutional capacity strengthening through knowledge and intelligence sharing, and collaboration with regional and international partners to enhance wildlife law enforcement in the member countries.
- Its Secretariat is located in Kathmandu, Nepal.
Source- The Hindu
- Indian Army Women Officers’ Mountaineering Expedition to Mt. Bhagirathi-II
- Indian Army Women Officers’ Mountaineering Expedition to Mt. Bhagirathi-II (6512 metres) consisting of nine women officers, was flagged off by Director General of Military Training on 14 May 2018.
- The expedition aims at encouraging women in the field of adventure where dauntless courage, will-power and determination is put to test. The Indian Army women officers are exploring their maximum potential in the field of adventure sports.
- Bhagirathi-II is located in the Garhwal Himalayas in Gangotri National Park (Uttarakhand).
- The Garhwal Himalayas are mountain ranges located in the state of Uttarakhand, India.
- The mountain ranges cross two regions: Garhwal division and Kumaon division.
- This range is also a part of Himalaya Shivalik Hills, the outer most hills of the Himalaya located in Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand.