Posted in UPSC

GS 2 Mains 2018/6

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6. “Policy contradictions among various competing sectors and stakeholders have resulted in inadequate ‘protection and prevention of degradation to environment.” Comment with relevant illustrations.

Approach

1. Briefly introduce about policy paralysis (20 words)

2. Discuss about degradation of environment (60 words)

3. Discuss different examples and illustrations (45 words)

4. Way ahead (25 words)

Hints:

The increase in multitude of parties has led to indecisiveness, confusion, fragmentation which has further led to policy paralysis and policy contradictions. This type of contradiction adversely affects common people and environment at a large scale. The level and pattern of economic development also affect the nature of environmental problems.

Factors that have led to environment degradation:

• The manufacturing technology adopted by most of the industries has placed a heavy load on environment especially through intensive resource and energy use.

• Transport activities have a wide variety of effects on the environment such as air pollution, noise from road traffic and oil spills from marine shipping.

• Direct impacts of agricultural development on the environment arise from farming activities which contribute to soil erosion, land salination and loss of nutrients.

• Institutional and technological activities

• There is no effective coordination amongst various Ministries/Institutions regarding integration of environmental concerns at the inception/planning stage of the project.

• Market distortions created by price controls and subsidies may aggravate the achievement of environmental objectives

Examples:

• The rift between Capitalists and tribals- As the capitalist’s demand mining rights, tribals suffer a huge loss and this rift ultimately leads to environmental degradation.

• Considering the recent example by “Art of Living” organising a religious program which led to the damage of Yamuna River.

• Sinking aquifers and short-sighted public works such as paving banks and even the riverbed in many places has hastenedthedecline of Godavari and Ganga majorly.

Way ahead

Though, it is tough to achieve a perfect balance between environment and development but further steps can be taken:

• Strengthening the enforcement capabilities of environmental institutions, both at the Centre and the states.

• Effective coordination amongst various Ministries/Institutions regarding integration of environmental concerns at the inception/planning stage of the project.

• Proper trained personnel and precise database so that there is no delay in the projects

• Providing the State Government institutions with adequate technical staff and resources.

• Making Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) procedure a more effective instrument for environment protection and sustainable development.

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