GS Paper III-Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.

Yettinahole project: MP, activists threaten to go on hunger strike

What’s Happening-
Nalin Kumar Kateel, MP, and activists opposing the Yettinahole diversion project have threatened to go on an indefinite hunger strike here from February 11 if the State government did not take a decision to stop the project during the five-day legislature session from February 6.
The meeting with activists recently convened by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah was inconclusive as officials failed to clearly answer queries raised by the activists.

Environmental Impacts:
Deforestation and WildlifeThis project involves cutting  many trees and forest of western Ghats estimates up to more than 100 Hectares of forest need to cut for construction of Dams and Delivery chambers etc.
Many of these forest is home for many animals like Tiger, Lion Tailed Macaque, Elephant, Slender Loris and Gaur.
So this will increase human -animal conflict by destroying their habitat.

Key Points discussed were:

  • The strike will be held under aegis of the Netravathi Rakshana Samyukta Samiti.
  • The project by side-lining concerns over the non-availability of water and damage to the eco-sensitive Western Ghats.
  • “The State government stopped mining in Kudremukh. Pipes laid for Yettinahole project can still be removed. The adamant attitude of the State government is not good.
  • Kambalas are held more in areas lying on the river banks. The Netravathi needs to be protected for survival of kambla.

Background: –
Yettinahole River Project is River Netravathi Diversion project initiated by Karnataka.
Karnataka Govt is planning to divert waters from west-flowing river Netravathi to some districts i.e. Kolar, Bangalore, Ramanagara, Chikkaballapur, etc
But this project affects the people of Mangalore District who solely depends upon this River for Everything.
Apart from this there is danger for Western Ghats and might Change the Monsoon pattern.
Deforestation, Problem to Wildlife, Problems to Marine and aquatic animals.

GS Paper III- Science and Technology.

Tests suggest the methods of neuroscience are left wanting

What’s Happening-
NEUROSCIENCE, like many other sciences, has a bottomless appetite for data.
Flashy enterprises such as the BRAIN Initiative, announced by Barack Obama in 2013, or the Human Brain Project, approved by the European Union in the same year, aim to analyse the way that thousands or even millions of nerve cells interact in a real brain.
It helps neuroscientists get closer to understanding how exactly the brain does what it does.

Key Points discussed were:

paper just published in PLOS Computational Biology :

  • questions whether more information is the same thing as more understanding. It does so by way of neuroscience’s favourite analogy: comparing the brain to a computer.

The chips are down: How data collection will help

  • One common tactic in brain science is to compare damaged brains with healthy ones.
  • If damage to part of the brain causes predictable changes in behaviour, then researchers can infer what that part of the brain does.
  • In rats, for instance, damaging the hippocampuses—two small, banana-shaped structures buried towards the bottom of the brain—reliably interferes with the creatures’ ability to recognise objects.

Human Genome Project:

  • The data it generated, and the reams of extra information churned out by modern, far more capable gene-sequencers, have certainly been useful.

Background:
Neuroscience (or neurobiology) is the scientific study of the nervous system.
It is a multidisciplinary branch of biology, that deals with the anatomy, biochemistry, molecular biology, and physiology of neurons and neural .

Human Genome Project (HGP):
HGP was an international  project.
The goal of determining the sequence of nucleotide  that make up human , and of identifying and mapping all of the  of the  from both a physical and a functional standpoint.
It is the world’s largest collaborative biological project.