The World Heritage Committee of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) will take a decision on including the Western Ghats as a World Heritage Site soon. The committee is expected to announce the decision at its session to be held at Saint Petersburg in Russia in June.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) will submit its recommendations on the mountain ranges, a biodiversity hotspot, to the committee by mid-April.

With the presence of 1,168 bird species recorded in the country, India has been ranked 9th in the global list of bird wealth.

While a majority of Indian species belonged to the Least Concerned category indicating that they were relatively safe from threats, the country was ranked 6th in terms of globally threatened species.

Kerala has termed some recommendations of the Western Ghats Ecology Expert Panel (WGEEP) draconian.

In its response to the suggestions of the panel, the State came down heavily on the proposal to decommission dams older than 50 years. “Such a step will leave the State without power in a few years,” said a report signed by James Varghese, Principal Secretary to the Kerala Government

Illegal fishing practices are posing serious threat to fish resources and aquatic biodiversity.

The Kerala government has rejected the Western Ghats Ecology Expert Panel (WGEEP) proposals and urged the Union government to “do away with the Western Ghats Ecology Authority (WGEA).”

The State has requested the Union government not to “burden it with another regulatory authority, seriously diminishing the scanty land area of the land-starved State having very high density of population.”

Status of the bird may be changed from ‘least concern' to ‘near-threatened or vulnerable'

The conversation status of river tern, a bird species found mostly in inland waterbodies, is being reviewed by BirdLife International (BI), which assesses the conservation status of birds for the Red List of the Globally Threatened Birds for the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

The Western Ghats Ecology Expert Panel (WGEEP) has recommended to the Union Ministry of Environment and Forest to provisionally notify the limits of Ecologically Sensitive Zones.

The Western Ghats Ecology Expert Panel has proposed a three-layer system — comprising the (WGEA) Western Ghats Ecology Authority (as the apex body), the State authorities and the district ecology c

Knowing where the safe zones beyond the reach of floodwaters are and the routes to reach them will make the difference between life and death in case of a breach of the Mullaperiyar dam.

Keeping battery-operated radios and telephone numbers of emergency control rooms ready will help receive timely alerts and guidance in the event of disasters such as floods and earthquakes, the Institute of Land and Disaster Management says.

The Western Ghats Ecology Expert Panel (WGEEP) has designated the entire hill range as an Ecologically Sensitive Area.