Sarat Chandra IAS Academy

UPSC Civil Services Daily Current Affairs 30th May 2022

CURRENT AFFAIRS

 

 

TOPICS:

  • Green hydrogen

  • Nagorno-Karabak Enclave

  • Karnataka HC sets deadlines for probes

  • 4)U.S. becomes India’s biggest trading partner at $119 billion

  • North east helps in global outreach

 

 

 

GREEN HYDROGEN

  • A colourless, odourless, tasteless, non-toxic and highly combustible gaseous substance, hydrogen is the lightest, simplest and most abundant member of the family of chemical elements in the universe.
  • The ‘green’ prefix means how the electricity is generated to obtain the hydrogen, so Green hydrogen is produced through electrolysis using renewable sources of energy such as solar, wind or hydel power.
  • Hydrogen can be grey, blue and pink as well.
  • Grey hydrogen is generated through fossil fuels such as coal and gas and currently accounts for 95% of the total production in South Asia.
  • Blue hydrogen, is produced using electricity generated by burning fossil fuels (natural gas with a process of steam methane reforming) but with technologies to prevent the carbon released in the process from entering the atmosphere.
  • Pink hydrogen is hydrogen made with electrolysis powered by nuclear energy, which does not produce any carbon dioxide emissions.
USES:
  •  Green hydrogen can be stored for long periods of time.
  • The stored hydrogen can be used to produce electricity using fuel cells.
  • Through electrolysis process hydrogen is produced from water that is splitting (H2O) into hydrogen and oxygen.
  • Oxygen is the by product of electrolysis it can be used in industrial and medical applications or for enriching the environment.
  • When hydrogen burns, it generates energy in the form of heat, with water as a by-product.
  • Energy created from hydrogen generates no atmosphere-warming carbon dioxide (it will help reduce carbon emissions and slow global warming)
STEPS TAKEN BY GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
  • India has just begun to generate green hydrogen with the objective of raising non-fossil energy capacity to 500 gigawatts by 2030.
  • India’s first 99.99% pure green hydrogen pilot plant was set up in eastern Assam’s duliajan, in keeping with the goal of “making the country ready for the pilot-scale production of hydrogen and its use in various applications.
  • Five-part “Panchamrit” pledge, which includes the country’s net-zero emission by 2070 target. (green hydrogen is key to achieve this).
  • Research and development efforts are ongoing for a reduction in the cost of production, storage and the transportation.
Challenges:
  • Hydrogen is highly flammable its storage and handling may be cause problems.
  • Cost of production is very high
  • Research and development will have some infrastructural issues.

 

Nagorno-Karabak Enclave

  • Conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia erupted again it is a decades long conflict between them.
  • Nagorno-Karabakh is a landlocked, mountainous and forested region, falling within the boundaries of Azerbaijan.
  • Nagorno-Karabakh, which was once a part of the Armenian kingdom, has been ruled by several empires over the centuries — the Ottomans, the Persians, and the Russians.
  • It hosts a predominantly ethnic Armenian population with an Azeri minority.
  • Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia later became separate Republics, with the Azeris incorporating Nagorno-Karabakh into their Republic.
World War 1:
  • Ottomans, aided by Azeris, attacked the south Caucasus, especially targeting ethnic Armenians. Because of this  Azerbaijan and Armenia descended into a full blown war in 1920.
  • The Azeri Armenian war of 1991
  • Bolsheviks took over south Caucasus to expand Soviet influence and Azerbaijan, Armenia, and Georgia became Soviet Republics.
  • The Soviets officially placed Nagorno-Karabakh as an autonomous Oblast (administrative region) in Azerbaijan’s territory, despite the chiefly Armenian population.
  • Soviet power began to wane in the 1980s, the ethnic Armenian population of Nagorno-Karabakh expressed a desire to be reunited with their roots and become a part of Armenia.
  • War broke out in 1991 it killed nearly 30,000 people, by 1993, Armenia had taken control of most of Nagorno-Karabakh.
  • War ended in 1994 but without clear cut demarcation of borders between Armenia and Azerbaijan
  • The Minsk Group, created by the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in early 1990, was co-chaired by Russia, the United States, and France.
  • The Minsk Group not successful in negotiations which leads to two wars between them in 2016, 2020.
  •  In 2020 cease fire mediated by Russia, because of which war ended but not the conflict
Present condition:
  • The European Union, meanwhile, has emerged as a potential peace broker.
  • Now both countries have now agreed to formulate border security and delimitation commissions and start talks for a peace deal, a permanent solution for the Karabakh issue remains out of sight.

 

Karnataka HC sets deadlines for probes

Context:

  • In an unprecedented order, the High Court of Karnataka has fixed a time frame of 60 days and 90 days, respectively, for completion of investigation in petty offences and serious/heinous offences by the police and other investigating agencies in the State.
  • The guidelines issued by the High Court of Karnataka for speedy investigation of cases:
  • Magistrate should play a role to counter moves of persons in influential positions to subvert effective process of investigation.
  • Investigation officers should bring to the notice of magistrate bottlenecks hindering the probe.
  • Magistrate should send report to the district judge for appropriate action on administrative action on administrative side to eliminate delays.
  • Superior police officers to take over the investigation in case of delay in probe by the investigating officer for unjustifiable reasons.
  • Necessary efforts for bifurcation of law and order, and crime investigation as regards personnel needed to be implemented to bring in professionalism in investigation.
  • Delay in completing investigation could be considered as “serious misconduct” by the authority.
  • The court suggested that State authorities may consider having provisions for speedy and effective investigation by framing rules and regulations.

 

U.S. becomes India’s biggest trading partner at $119 billion

  • The U.S. surpassed China to become India’s top trading partner in 202122, reflecting strengthening economic ties between the two countries. (India’s two way commerce with China aggregated at $115.42 billion 2021-22)
  • According to data with the Commerce Ministry, the bilateral trade between the U.S. and India stood at $119.42 billion in 2021-22 as against $80.51 billion in 2020-21.
  • Exports to the U.S. increased to $76.11 billion in 202122 from $51.62 billion in the previous fiscal year, while imports rose to $43.31 billion from $29 billion.
  • India is emerging as a trusted trading partner and global firms are reducing their dependence on China for their supplies and are diversifying business into other countries like India.
  • India has joined a U.S. led initiative to set up an Indo Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) and this move would help boost economic ties further.
  • India is the fastest growing market economy with unparalleled demographic dividend and provides enormous opportunities for the U.S. and Indian firms for technology transfer, manufacturing, trade and investment.

 

North east helps in global outreach

Context: 

  • Ministry of external affairs at the inaugural session of the two day NADI3 Asian Confluence River Conclave said that 8 states of north east India is key to build relations with ASEAN countries
  • Prioritisation of this region makes it clear that India should work with trusted global partners like ASEAN and other border countries like Bangladesh, Nepal and Bhutan.
  • When the northeast, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan and Myanmar get more deeply intertwined— each of them stands to benefit from more access, opportunities, resources and markets.
  • These endeavours will literally bring ASEAN closer to India.
  • Indian government said that diplomacy is not just about bridging positions through words mithery. It is equally about bridging societies through projects. It is about connectivity, contacts and cooperation.
  • North east acted as a cultural and civilizational bridge between India and the ASEAN region besides providing the land link. “Due to its strategic location, north east provides a great opportunity for economic growth as well.
NADI initiative
  • NADI, meaning river, is an initiative to articulate and activate a collective vision of Sub regional cooperation in the Bay of Bengal region and with South East Asia.
  • It recognises the region south of Himalayas from the Ganga and the Brahmaputra to the Mekong as a contiguity of river basins with common challenges that require close cooperation beyond their political borders.
  • NADI is aimed at building confidence in the key role of India’s north eastern region taking forward strategic initiatives for energy and water security in the neighbourhood and in the Bay of Bengal region leading towards a vibrant and secure Indo-Pacific.

UPSC Civil Services Daily Current Affairs 30th May 2022

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