Gujarat High Court on Thursday issued notice to the Union government on a public interest litigation (PIL) challenging notification giving Pune bench of National Green Tribunal (NGT) jurisdiction for cases from the state of Gujarat.

A division bench of acting chief Justice Bhaskar Bhattacharya and Justice J B Pardiwala also issued notice to the NGT and has scheduled next hearing after a fortnight.

The National Green Tribunal has sought the reply of Union Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) on a plea against grant of any clearance to any new project in ecologically sensitive Western Ghats.

The Tribunal also issued notices to the state governments of Maharashtra, Karnataka, Goa, Kerala, Gujarat and Tamil Nadu seeking their replies on the plea for implementation of the report by Western Ghats Ecology Expert Panel (WGEEP) on the protection and preservation of Western Ghats.

AHMEDABAD: Forests and other departments in Gujarat have been very proactive in carrying out biodiversity conservation measures, significant among them being those related to whale shark, sea turtle, restoration of mangroves etc., Dr. A P Singh, member secretary, Gujarat Biodiversity Board, said.

Gujarat Biodiversity Board too has launched several measures for the conservation and development of biological diversity, including marine, he said, adding that Government of India had enacted the Biological Diversity Act, 2002 for the conservation, development and regulation of biodiversity. The main objective of the Act is conservation of biodiversity and sustainable utilization of biological resources.

JAIPUR: Even though a good two years have passed since the state government announced its first-ever forest policy in 2010, the notification is still awaiting active implementation.

The Rajasthan State Forest Policy 2010 had acknowledged the importance of Orans that are considered repositories of rich biodiversity and an excellent example of people's religious faith linked with conservation. The aim of the forest policy was to preserve ecological balance through increasing vegetal cover which would help in reducing soil erosion and consequently dust particle in upper stratosphere.

Help of local self-government institutions to be sought

The Kerala State Biodiversity Board (KSBB) is preparing to launch a campaign highlighting the need to prevent the destruction of plants during sanitation drives taken up by local self-government institutions.Board chairman R.V. Varma told The Hindu that directions would be communicated to local bodies to sensitise workers engaged for projects taken up under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) .

The Environmental and Social Management Framework (ESMF) provides general environmental and social policies, guidelines, codes of practice and procedures to be integrated into the implementation of the World Bank-supported APL on Strengthening Cross-Regional Cooperation for Wildlife Protection in Asia.

The facility will develop and test new hybrid seed varieties, says MD

The development of Bt brinjal was a case of bio-piracy, according to the National Biodiversity Authority (NBA). According to sources, the NBA has finally concluded its year-long investigation and recommended action against the U.S. agri-business giant Monsanto and its Indian collaborators who developed and promoted the controversial, genetically modified vegetable.

Over a year after bio-piracy complaints against U.S.-based multinational Monsanto — with regard to Bt brinjal — reached the National Biodiversity Authority of India (NBA), the investigation is still continuing.

However, when Monsanto sent in its application to use Indian onion strains for hybrid research last month, the Authority promptly forwarded it, and expects it to be dealt with by the end of the month.

These rules may be called Orissa Biological Diversity Rules, 2010. They shall come into force on the date of their publication in the Orissa Gazette.