Environment | Centre for Science and Environment


Count the natural debt, too

Now that Europe’s debt crisis is unfolding all around us, shouldn’t we question why the world is determined to live beyond its means and not worry how it sabotages our common future? The debt crisis is a mere symptom of a deeper malaise. The fact is that countries, private companies and individual households can run only if they can borrow against their assets and hope that the debt will grow slower than the value of their asset. Most financial analysts will now tell you that this business is doomed because of the Ponzi scheme nature of the loan business, where borrowing is used to speculate to get more loans and so repayment becomes difficult and over time impossible.

The bogey of green clearances

The environment is holding up growth and economic development. This is the common refrain in circles that matter. So when the Group of Ministers tasked to resolve the issue of coal mining in forests asked for a report on what needs to be done, it was told that the best would be to dismantle green conditions, almost completely.

20 years to…where?

Next year, in June, world leaders will get together in the joyful city of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, to mark 20 years of UNCED—the Earth Summit (see Down to Earth, May 15, 1992).

Green rating problems

GRIHA, a rating system for green buildings developed by The Energy and Resources Institute ( TERI ), has been formalized as the first national rating system.


2010 top news on the environment in Asia

Date: Dec 2010

Top News is a compilation of important environmental news topics selected by environmental experts from the Asia-Pacific region as well as by international organisations and research institutes from twenty-one countries in the region.

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Shifting sands of (mal) development

We were on a beach. Somewhere close to Puducherry. The sight was surreal: half-smashed houses with wide open fronts, people still living in them. The devastation was caused not by a sea storm or a cyclone, but by the eroded beach. The sea had crept up to the village; there was no protection between the sea and the village.

How to approach environmentalism

By: Sunita Narain

2010 was a loud year for the environment. High profile projects—from Vedanta to Posco and Navi Mumbai airport to Lavasa—hit the headlines for non-compliance with environmental regulations.

While 2009 was the 25th anniversary of the Bhopal gas tragedy, it was only last year that we were all outraged by the disaster. The realisation of how every institution—the judiciary, parliament and government— had miserably failed to provide justice to the victims shocked us deeply.


POSCO’s port halt

By: Sugandh Juneja

South Korean company’s steel plant and port may impact coast, says expert panel The POSCO steel plant and port planned in Odisha’s Jagatsinghpur district have run into fresh trouble. An expert appraisal committee (EAC) of the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests deferred its decision on clearing the port project, saying the South Korean steel giant did not furnish sufficient details.

Knowledge Dissemination

CSE as a CoE also functions as knowledge centre for Sustainable Water Management, wherein it collates and disseminate information related to urban water management through its website. CSE’s website has dedicated interactive online information on water management and in particular CoE activities like RWH, DWWT and water efficiency.Also, other CSE’s websites like India Environmental Portal, Down to Earth, rainwater harvesting widely cover issues related to the above activities on a regular basis.

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