Increasing emission rate of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases is the major driver of global temperature increase. Soil microbial respiration is accelerating the release of CO2 in the environment, but the mechanistic understanding of this process is still at its nascent stage. In this note, we discuss the importance of understanding the microbial responses to climate change and associated respiration process in the Indian Himalayan region.

The hybrid congener 3 derived from hydroxychalcone and pharmacophore oxypropanolamine for adrenergic receptor, along with its enantiomers 9a and 9b were selected from a series of compounds for detailed studies of their antidiabetic profile in sucrose-challenged, low-dosed, streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats and in db/db mice, and antidyslipidaemic profile in high fat diet-induced dyslipidaemic hamsters. The test compounds exhibited significant and consistent antidiabetic and antidyslipidaemic activities in the above models.

This study provides application of Resourcesat-2 AWiFS satellite imagery for forest burnt area assessment in India. AWiFS datasets covering peak forest fire months of 2014 have been analysed. The total burnt area under vegetation cover (forest, scrub and grasslands) of India was estimated as 57,127.75 sq. km. In 2014, 7% of forest cover of India was affected by fires. Of the major forest types, dry deciduous forests are affected by the highest burnt area, followed by moist deciduous forests.

The recent flood in Machak River, Madhya Pradesh, India is a distinctive paradigm of flash floods that washed off rail tracks and killed a number of passengers besides incredible damage to Indian Railways and to the surrounding villages. This shows the vulnerability of bridges/culverts to flash floods in the country. Flash floods devastated the Machak River during the midnight of 4 August 2015 due to heavy rainfall in the catchment.

Original Source

In this communication, we report observation of anomalous radon gas emission measured in a borehole at India’s first multi-parametric geophysical observatory (MPGO) located at Ghuttu, Garhwal Himalaya, established by the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology (WIHG), Dehradun.

Original Source

Crop management practices have a significant impact on greenhouse gas (GHG) emission rates, where methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions from rice paddy fields are in trade-off association. A field study for two consecutive years (2013 and 2014) was conducted to continuously measure CH4 and N2O emissions from rice paddies under various agricultural management schedules like water regimes (irrigated and rainfed), transplanting dates and nutritional amendments (synthetic fertilizer with N as ammonium sulphate, P and K according to recommended dose, and vermicompost).

Traffic density is an indicator of congestion and the present study explores the use of data-driven techniques for real time estimation and prediction of traffic density. Data-driven techniques require large database, which can be achieved only with the help of automated sensors. However, the available automated sensors developed for western traffic may not work for heterogeneous and lane-less traffic. Hence, the performance of available automated sensors was evaluated first to identify the best inputs to be used for the chosen application.

Expansion and consolidation of Gir Protected Area, Gujarat, India – habitat of the Asiatic lion, and response of prey and predator to the management and dispersion trend of lions outside the Gir forests are interesting and noteworthy. During the last five decades (1965–2015), an approach for the Asiatic lion conservation is one of the best efforts in the world. Unlike other super predators, the number of lions has increased by 4-folds and wild ungulates by over 13-folds in the Gir forest during this period.

Despite the spectacular success of the green revolution and achieving self-sufficiency in food production, there are increasing concerns on sustaining the pace of agricultural growth to feed the large population of our country. Lack of yield breakthroughs, deteriorating soil health, groundwater depletion, declining size of operational holdings and labour shortage are some of the prime reasons for slow growth of agriculture. (Editorial)

Original Source

This paper is a critique of Srivastava and Kolady1 who reported a macro analysis of the benefits of Bt cotton in India using state wide average data. The analysis is in error with respect to the economic benefits, biological underpinnings, and the effects of Bt cotton technology adoption on resource-poor farmers growing rain fed cotton. Viable non GMO high density cotton alternatives that increase yields, reduce cost of production, and give higher net average returns were ignored. The authors argue for biotechnology adoption in other crops in India without providing data or analysis.