Pesticide regulations

Pesticides are widely used in agriculture without paying much heed to the consequences of its unregulated and indiscriminate use . This fact has been known to our policy makers for nearly five decades. The government is atleast under law supposed to regulate its use. 

Endosulfan poisoning in Padre village: Industry's dirty tactics

Ordinary people of the remote Padre village of Kasaragod district in Kerala along with NGOs have been at the forefront of a battle to ban the use of endosulfan, a toxic pesticide that has been used for decades in India. While the struggle to have this toxic substance banned continues nearly ten years after evidence first emerged from Kerala about its health impact, the government and the powerful pesticide lobby continue to be in denial about it.

Pesticides in bottled water

One often finds unsuspecting people buying bottled water or packaged drinking water thinking its safe. Well think again. As the Centre for Science and Environment laboratory report found after analysing bottled water samples from Mumbai and Delhi these products can be far more lethal than one can imagine. The samples contained a deadly cocktail of pesticide residues. What is worse most of the samples contained as many as five different pesticide residues, in levels far exceeding the standards specified as safe for drinking water.

Pesticides in soft drinks

Adopting dual standards is a practice large multi national corporations follow especially when it comes to developing countries. Soft drinks industry is a classic case of this as the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) discovered way back in 2003.  A laboratory report prepared by CSE detailed some astonishing facts about the extent of pesticide contamination in soft drinks sold in India.

Bhopal: toxic legacy

For over 25 years the impoverished residents of Bhopal have been silently suffering the consequences of contamination caused by a ruthless, money making multi national pesticide company. But not anymore, their tireless struggle led the Centre for Science and Environment to investigate what they have been alleging all along that the water and soil around the factory had been heavily contaminated. CSE's investigation revealed the extent of contamination in the vicinity of location of the world's largest industrial disaster site was unparalleled.

Green Schools Program

The Green Schools Programme is an ‘inspection’ or ‘survey’ of the school done by its students on its environmental practices (which we call environmental auditing). The students form teams and go around the school on an exploratory journey and find out what’s happening – to the water, energy, land , air and waste in the school. How is the school managing these issues?

About Workshop

Several media briefing workshops have been conducted by the unit till date. These workshops - national, South Asian as well as regional - have primarily aimed at demystifying key environmental issues for the benefit of the media, so that it gets a basic understanding of the subject. 

About Industry & Environment Unit

CSE's Industry and Environment Unit addresses an array of environmental issues related to Indian industries. It conducts research and advocacy on the impact of industrial pollution and provides training in related issues. The various arms of the Industry and Environment unit are: 1. Green Rating Project - The Green Rating Project (GRP) is an effort to rate industrial units within a specific sector on the basis of their environment friendliness. The project aims at encouraging companies to adopt better environment management policies. Unfortunately, in many developing countries like India, policies and institutions for controlling pollution and degradation of the resource base are weak and still in a nascent stage. 

About Food Safety & Toxins

The programme relies on a two pronged strategy of doing laboratory research to generate empirical data on issues of toxins and food safety and secondly, doing policy research and advocacy to bring about changes in the regulatory and enforcement framework.

About CSE Laboratory

The mission of the Pollution Monitoring Laboratory (PML) is to catalyze communities and NGOs to fight polluters across the country by supporting them with scientific proof and documentation of pollution and its health impacts. It is an independent analytical, research and development laboratory that determines pesticide residues, conducts water quality analysis and ambient air monitoring.

Vehicular technology and fuel quality: Why must India leapfrog?

Vehicles are a special problem as they emit in the breathing zone of people. A large number of studies are now available that show exposure to vehicle exhaust causes significant increase in respiratory symptoms and lung function impairment, cancer and plethora of other ailments. Indian evidences have also begun to emerge. Congestion further aggravates emissions. Low average speeds due to traffic congestion increases the emissions due to the stop-and-go pattern of traffic flow in congested condition. Leapfrog to clean vehicle technology and fuels and fuel efficient vehicles. Small gains are easily offset by the growing traffic volumes. Indian regulations instead of pushing the automobile industry to catch up with the global best standards, fall short of what the industry is capable of achieving.

About Environment Education

About Environment Education Environment education has for long been limited to a narrow focus on nature and wildlife, topics on which a vast amount of literature already exists. The Environment Education Unit (EEU) at CSE was launched to initiate ecological literacy. EEU targets the future inheritors of Earth and tomorrow's planners and administrators. It promotes an understanding of the environment amongst participants to facilitate a push towards a sustainable and equitable future. The unit aims to come up with quality resource material and programmes for educational institutions, students and environmental educators to foster awareness and positive environmental action.

About Green Rating Programme

The Green Rating Project (GRP) is an effort to rate industrial units within a specific sector on the basis of their environment friendliness. The project aims at encouraging companies to adopt better environment management policies. Environment risk liability is an issue that is gaining increasing attention in Indian company’s boardroom. Reasons for pro-activeness: International financial institutions and investors are keen to know more about the potential liability they could be involved in by investing in emerging markets like India, which lacks in environmental commitments. Investors associate poor social and environmental performance with financial risks and liabilities.

Environment Impact Assessment

Our country is in the throes of rapid industrialisation, which is often accompanied with massive environmental and social burdens, principally borne by communities living in the vicinity of project sites. Monitoring tools like Environment Impact Assessment (EIA), therefore, assume great significance in ensuring sound economic development without compromising on environmental and social costs. It is said that everyone from the Prime Minister downwards, is concerned with the process of environmental clearances:

About Media Resource Centre

The Media Resource Centre (MRC) dovetails its efforts with other CSE units to help disseminate information and establish a sustained and interactive contact with the mass media. The objective is to bring into sharp focus environmental and sustainability issues in national and international media and polity.

CSE/Down to Earth Feature Service

Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) offers a free feature service to media organisations across the country. This service has been operational for more than four years now, and is steadily being accepted as a trusted source for topical news stories and opinion pieces on hotly debated issues of environment, science and health.