Daily Current Affairs for UPSC Civil Services Exam – 16 March 2021

In Today’s News:

  1. Project RE-HAB to prevent Elephant-Human conflict rolled out.
  2. Deep Ocean Mission.
  3. Trade Deficit widens.

1. Project RE-HAB to prevent Elephant-Human conflict rolled out

News Summary

Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC), launched a unique project of creating “bee-fences” to mitigate human-elephant conflicts in the country called Project RE-HAB.

Prelims GS – Environment

(Note: The following points may also be used in Mains questions related to Reducing Man-Animal conflict)

Project RE-HAB:
  • The objective of Project RE-HAB (Reducing Elephant – Human Attacks using Bees) is to thwart elephant attacks in human habitations using honey bees and thus reducing the loss of lives of both, humans as well as elephants.
  • The pilot project was launched at four locations around village Chelur in the Kodagu district of Karnataka.
  • Project RE-HAB is a sub-mission under KVIC’s National Honey Mission.
  • While the Honey Mission is a program to increase the bee population, honey production, and beekeepers’ income by setting up apiaries, Project RE-HAB uses bee boxes as a fence to prevent the attack of elephants.
  • KVIC has set up 15-20 interspersed bee boxes at each of the four locations in the passageways of elephant-human conflict zones to block the entrance of elephants to human habitations.
  • The boxes are connected with a string so that when elephants attempt to pass through, a tug or pull causes the bees to swarm the elephant herds and dissuade them from progressing further.
  • Bee boxes have been placed on the ground as well as hung from the trees to block the passage of elephants.
  • High resolution, night vision cameras have been installed at strategic points to record the impact of bees on elephants and their behavior in these zones.

Click here to know more about Project RE-HAB on the official PIB release.

2. Deep Ocean Mission

News Summary

Deep Ocean Mission information was given in a written reply by Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister for Science & Technology,  Earth Sciences, and Health & Family Welfare in a written reply in Lok Sabha.

Prelims GS – Governance

Deep Ocean Mission:
  • The Deep Ocean Mission is proposed as a multi-ministerial multi-disciplinary program with an emphasis on the development of deep-sea technology, exploration of deep-sea mineral resources and biodiversity, acquisition of a research vessel for exploration, deep-sea observations, and capacity building.
  • Ministry of Earth Sciences is the nodal agency for implementing the program.
  • The major objectives proposed under Deep Ocean Mission are as follows:
    • Development of technologies for deep-sea mining, underwater vehicles, and underwater robotics;
    • Development of ocean climate change advisory services;
    • Technological innovations for exploration and conservation of deepsea biodiversity;
    • Deep ocean survey and exploration;
    • Proof of concept studies on energy and fresh water from the ocean; and
    • Establishing an advanced marine station for ocean biology.
  • The Deep Ocean Mission is proposed to be a Central Sector Scheme and no separate allocation for States is envisaged.
  • It is proposed to collaborate with non-governmental organizations for research collaboration for various components of the Deep Ocean Mission.
  • Under Deep Ocean Mission, it is proposed to develop, test, and demonstrate the mining technology for the harvesting of polymetallic nodules from the Test Mine Site (TMS) in the allocated area of 75000 sq. km in the Central Indian Ocean Basin (CIOB).
  • A manned submersible for 6000 m depth is also proposed to be developed as an ocean exploratory tool.

Click here to view the Courtesy: PIB release to know more about Deep Ocean Mission and its estimates.

3. Trade Deficit widens

News Summary

Trade Deficit has widened to $12.62 billion in February 2021.

Prelims GS – Economic Development

Trade Deficit:
  • A Trade Deficit is said to occur when the imports done by a country exceed the exports of a country during a given period of time.
  • It is also called Negative Balance of Trade(BOT).
  • Trade deficits can help nations to avoid shortages of goods and other economic problems in the short run.
  • In the long run, if a country continually runs trade deficits, citizens of other countries acquire funds to buy up capital in that nation.
  • This will lead to foreign investors eventually owning nearly everything in the country and it is a disadvantage for the country.

Click here to view more about Trade Deficit on the Courtesy website.



Click here for Daily current affairs for the UPSC exams on other dates.