- UN’s Sustainable Development Goals 2018 report
- The number of hungry people in the world has risen for the first time in more than a decade, according to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals 2018 report.
- There are now approximately 38 million more undernourished people in the world, rising from 777 million in 2015 to 815 million in 2016.
- According to the report, conflict is now one of the main drivers of food insecurity in 18 countries.
- Conflict, drought and disasters linked to climate change are among the key factors causing this reversal in progress.
- There is little country-specific data in the report, it does examine the performance of various regions in meeting the 17 SDGs, which were adopted by UN member nations in 2015. The deadline to meet them is 2030.
- South Asia, which includes India, has seen child marriage rates plunge, with a girl’s risk of getting married in childhood dropping by 40% from 2000 to 2017.
- On the other hand, water stress levels for many countries in the region are above 70%, indicating fast-approaching water scarcity.
Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
- The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is a set of 17 “Global Goals” with 169 targets covering various sectors like health, education and climate change among others.
- They replaced UN’s Millennium Development Goals.
- It is Spearheaded by the United Nations.
Source- The Hindu
- Smart City Awards
- The Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs had launched the India Smart Cities Award on 25 June 2017 with the mission to develop 100 cities across the country making them citizen friendly and sustainable.
- The India Smart Cities 2018 Awards were announced on 20 June 2018.
- Nine awards in three categories-
(a) Project Award,
(b) Innovative Idea Award and
(c) City Award has been announced under the India Smart Cities Awards.
- This year, the city award is being given to Surat. It is for showing great momentum in the implementation of projects especially in the categories of urban environment, transport and mobility and sustainable integrated development.
- The Innovative Idea award is being given to a project/idea particularly remarkable for its innovative, bottom-up and transformative approach. Bhopal for their Integrated Command and Control Centre (ICCC) and Ahmedabad for Safe and Secure Ahmedabad (SASA) Project were awarded this year.
- The Project awards are being given to most innovative and successful projects in several categories.
Source- Indian Express
- Shillong 100th city to be selected under Smart Cities Mission
- Shillong has been selected as the 100th city to receive funding under the Centre’s flagship Smart Cities Mission.
- Till now, 99 smart cities had been selected and with this announcement, selection of 100 cities has been completed under the Smart Cities Mission.
- Under the scheme, each city will get Rs 500 crore from the Centre for implementing various projects.
- An equal amount, on matching basis, will have to be contributed by the state or urban local bodies.
Smart City Mission
- The 100 Smart Cities Mission was launched by Prime Minister on June 25, 2015.
- The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs is responsible for implementing the mission in collaboration with the state governments of the respective cities.
- The objective is to promote cities that provide core infrastructure and give a decent quality of life to its citizens, a clean and sustainable environment and application of ‘Smart’ Solutions.
Source- Economic Times
- Assam, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh worst state to be born in
- While India’s birth rate has dipped from 21 births per 1,000 population in 2014 to 20.4 births per 1,000 population in 2016, some states have seen a significant increase in birth rate.
- Worryingly, the laggard states such as Bihar, Uttar Pradesh have the highest birth rate: 26.8 births and 26.2 births per 1,000, respectively.
- In fact, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand, other laggard states, have seen the birth rate increase from 23.4 births and 23.8 births in 2014 to 24.3 births and 24.5 births respectively in 2016.
- Interestingly, union territories such as Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu have seen the highest growth in urban birth rate: 27.7 births and 25.68 births respectively.
Projected birth rates in India and other states
- The southern states such as Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu will continue to maintain the trend of low birth rates.
- Between 2021 and 2025, these states will see 13.7, 13.8, 12.3 and 12.5 births per 1,000.
- Even then, the birth rate in laggard states will be much higher than the national average of 16 births.
- States such as Assam, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh, which were lagging behind the national average of life expectancy of males and females in 2001, will not be on par with the national average of 69.8 years (male) and 72.3 years (female) even during 2021-25.
Infant and maternal mortality
- As opposed to the national average of 34 per 1,000 live births, infant mortality rate (IMR) was 47 per 1,000 live births in Madhya Pradesh in 2016—worst in the country.
- It is followed by Assam (44), Odisha (44) and Uttar Pradesh (43).
- Goa is the only state that had a single-digit IMR (8 per 1,000 live births) in 2016.
- North-eastern states such as Manipur and Nagaland recorded one of the lowest IMR in the country.
- While national MMR has improved from 212 to 167—a 21 Percent reduction—states are yet to keep up with that pace.
Neo-natal mortality rate
- Urban India has seen about 44 Percent reduction from 24.9 per 1,000 live births to 14.
- In rural India, the reduction in percentage comes down to 39 Percent from 44 per 1,000 live births in 2001 to in 27 per 1,000 births in 2016.
Infant mortality rate
- The number of deaths of children less than 1 year old per 1,000 live births.
Maternal mortality ratio
- The number of maternal deaths per 100,000 live births due to causes related to pregnancy or within 42 days of termination of pregnancy, regardless of the site or duration of pregnancy.
- It is defined as death within the first four weeks of life.
Source- Down to Earth
- Gujarat govt announced Wind-Solar Hybrid Power Policy-2018
- Gujarat Government has announced Wind-Solar Hybrid Power Policy-2018.
- The benefits of the new policy can be accrued for 25 years or until its life or whichever is shorter.
- It entails the developers can set up wind power unit on the land meant for existing solar power unit, or vice versa.
- The electricity produced from such hybrid wind and solar units will be exempted from electricity duty, allowing land use for dual purposes.
- Under this policy, the Gujarat govt has announced 50 Percent concession in cross-subsidy surcharge and additional surcharge while selling electricity to any third party.
- For captive power plants under hybrid projects, it entails total exemption from cross subsidy surcharge and additional surcharge and 50 Percent relief in wheeling charges and distribution loss.