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A clash of claws and tails

Despite putting up a good fight, the lizard’s defence wasn’t enough for the hungry leopard as it succeeds in grabbing it by the neck before walking off with it.



Leopard Monitor Lizard

New Delhi, Feb 6 : An intriguing video of a clash between David and Goliath is doing the rounds on the Internet and this fight between a leopard cub and a monitor lizard is thrilling the social media users.

IFS officer Parveen Kaswan and shared the viral video on Twitter with the caption: “#Leopard V/S Monitor #Lizard. This lizard is a fighter but #Leopards are excellent hunters.

A post read: “Many people in Konkan region eat this lizard. But she’s dangerous. While catching her if she succeeds in hitting her tail on any of your limbs, then that limb gets paralyzed.”

The video was filmed at Kaingu Safari Lodge, Zambia in 2018, reported the Daily Mail.

In the viral video the leopard gets close to the lizard and repeatedly slaps it with its paw. The reptile uses its tail to defend itself by whipping it around.

Despite putting up a good fight, the lizard’s defence wasn’t enough for the hungry leopard as it succeeds in grabbing it by the neck before walking off with it.

As the post went viral, Twitterati have flooded the social media with their reactions.

A user wrote: “So wildlife people were standing like fools and were not saving a monitor lizard which was on the verge of extinction. Couldn’t you feed him chicken or goat.”

Another wrote, “Feeling bad for the lizard!! But wondering! What all vitamins the big cat is going to get from eating that lizard…?”

“Can leopard survive after eating that monitor lizard?” asked one user.

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Don’t build marine-mammal park, PETA urges Maha CM




Mumbai, Feb 18 : People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) on Tuesday wrote to Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray to urge for the shelving of a plan to build a marine-mammal park in the state.

“The request follows reports that the state plans to invite expression of interest from private players to choose the proposed park’s location,” a PETA statement said.

The animal welfare organisation said that the project was inspired by SeaWorld theme park chain headquartered in Orlando, Florida.

“Aquaria and marine-mammal theme parks like SeaWorld sell the sufferings of intelligent social beings, who are denied everything natural and important to them, as entertainment,” PETA India CEO and veterinarian Dr Manilal Valliyate said.

“PETA India requests that Maharashtra steer clear of marine ‘abusement’ (sic) parks and instead support only the tourist attractions that don’t involve keeping animals in captivity,” the statement added.

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Budget 2020: Govt proposes allocation of Rs 4,400cr for clean air in FY21, to incentivise states



Air Pollution

New Delhi, Feb 1: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, citing pollution as a matter of concern, said the government proposes to encourage states that are formulating and implementing plans for ensuring cleaner air in cities with a population of one million. The Union Budget allocated Rs 4,400 crore for National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) for the year 2020-21.

Detailing the plans for environment and climate change in the Budget 2020 speech, Sitharaman said, “In large cities having population above one million, polluted air is a matter of concern… Parameters for the incentives would be notified by the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate change. Allocation for this purpose is 4400 crore for 2020-2021.”

Emphasizing the Prime Minister’s international initiative – Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI) with its Secretariat in Delhi, 2019 and International Solar Alliance, 2015, Sitharaman said this will help strengthen global partnership to address a number of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), as also it aims for Sendai framework for disaster risk reduction. “It will enhance climate change adaptation with a focus on disaster resilient infrastructure”, she said.

She also added India submitted its Nationally Determined Contribution, under the Paris Agreement in 2015 on a “best effort” basis, bearing in mind the development imperative of the country. “Its implementation effectively begins on January 1, 2021. Our commitments stand as action will be executed in various sectors by the Departments/Ministries concerned through the normal budgeting process”, she said further.

According to India’s Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC), the energy intensity is targeted to decline by 33 to 35 percent by 2030, in comparison with 2005, in addition with 40 percent of power from non-fossil sources.

The FM also said the government will advise utilities to close down thermal power plants if their emission is above prescribed norms under the National Clean Air Programme (NCAP). “There are yet, thermal power plants that are old and their carbon emission levels are high. For such power plants, we propose that utilities running them would be advised to close them, if their emission is above the pre-set norms. The land so vacated can be put to alternative use.” Sitharaman said.

The government had directed all the thermal power plants to install Flue Gas Desulphurization (FDG), which reduces emissions of sulphur dioxide in phases. By December 2022, all the 440 coal-fired plans that produce 166.5 GW have to comply with the regulation. The FM also proposed to provide about Rs 22,000 crore to power and renewable energy sector in 2020-21.

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Greta tweets with Stop Adani, asks Siemens to pull out of Aus mine




Stop Adani in Australia

New Delhi, Jan 11 : Teenage climate activist from Sweden Greta Thunberg has tweeted with the #StopAdani hashtag, asking German engineering major Siemens to “stop, delay or interrupt” the building of the Adani coal mine in Australia.

“It seems that @SiemensDE have the power to stop, delay or at least interrupt the building of the huge Adani coal mine in Australia. On Monday they will announce their decision. Please help pushing them to make the only right decision,” Thunberg said.

Thunberg also asked netizens to put pressure on Siemens to call off the contract for the mine.

Thunberg has called for Siemens to review its $20 million contract to supply rail infrastructure to Adani Group’s Carmichael mine in Australia which has been facing backlash from environment experts.

Siemens has said that it will decide on the project by Monday. Thunberg was in the news recently for her speech on preventing climate change in the United Nations.

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