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December 14, 2023 @ 7:00 am - 11:30 pm


The recently concluded COP-28 in Dubai marked a notable stride toward reducing global reliance on fossil fuels. The adopted resolution, known as the Dubai Consensus, outlines a path for transitioning away from fossil fuels in energy systems. Despite its significance, the language in the resolution, particularly the use of “transitioning” instead of a more stringent “phase-out,” reflects the delicate balance between developed and developing nations.                Dubai Consensus Highlights:

Transition Away from Fossil Fuels:

The resolution emphasizes the imperative of transitioning from fossil fuels in energy systems.

Calls for a just, orderly, and equitable manner of transition, accelerating action in the critical decade to achieve net zero by 2050.

Dilution of Language:

The term “transitioning” replaces the earlier, more forceful “phase-out” of fossil fuels, indicating a compromise in the final text.

Net Zero by 2050:

Acknowledges that achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 is crucial to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

Implies challenging emission reduction targets of 43% by 2030 and 60% by 2035.

Compromise Between Developed and Developing Nations:

The consensus text reflects a compromise on emissions reduction strategies, considering the historical responsibility of countries for the climate crisis.

Annual climate talks make incremental progress, requiring unanimous agreement from all 198 signatories.

Global Perspectives:

Vulnerability Concerns:

Delegates from vulnerable nations express dissatisfaction, emphasizing the need for more decisive measures to end fossil fuel usage.

Financial Commitments:

Discontent among several countries regarding the lack of assurance that funds pledged by developed nations in previous COPs will be effectively delivered to support developing countries.


While the Dubai Consensus represents progress toward a fossil-free future, the tension between developed and developing nations persists. The compromise reflects the ongoing struggle to align climate action with historical responsibilities and ensure the realization of financial commitments. As the world grapples with the urgency of addressing climate change, the nuanced language in the resolution underscores the intricate negotiations that shape global climate policy.


On the 22nd anniversary of the Parliament attack, a significant security breach unfolded in the Lok Sabha as two individuals infiltrated the chamber, releasing yellow smoke canisters. The incident raised concerns about the efficacy of the security apparatus, prompting immediate reactions from parliamentarians.

Security Breach Details:

  • Two individuals entered Lok Sabha from the visitors’ gallery.
  • Canisters emitting yellow smoke were deployed, causing chaos.
  • Parliamentarians apprehended the intruders, leading to physical confrontation.

Police Response:

  • Delhi police identified six individuals involved in the incident.
  • Five were detained, including those responsible for the smoke canisters.
  • No evidence of a terror angle; categorized as a political protest.

Opposition’s Concerns:

  • Opposition criticized the security lapse.
  • Allegations of delayed security response, leaving MPs to handle intruders.

Speaker’s Response:

  • Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla assured a high-level inquiry.
  • Smoke confirmed non-poisonous, immediate suspension of visitor entry.

Individuals Involved:

  • Intruders identified as Sagar Sharma and D. Manoranjan.
  • Passes endorsed by BJP MP Prathap Simha.
  • Detained individuals include Amol Shinde, Neelam Devi, and Vicky aka Vishal Sharma.


While no injuries occurred, the security breach prompted critical questions about the response time and effectiveness. Speaker Birla’s commitment to an inquiry and temporary visitor entry suspension signifies a proactive approach to address the breach and reinforce security measures. Investigations continue to unfold the details surrounding this unprecedented incident.


The Rajya Sabha approved the Central Universities (Amendment) Bill and the Repealing and Amending Bill, with the former aimed at establishing the Sammakka Sarakka Central Tribal University in Telangana, as mandated by the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act.

  • The latter seeks to revoke 76 outdated laws. Despite the Opposition’s walkout during the Lok Sabha security breach discussion, the Central Universities Bill, passed on December 7, proceeded.
  • Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan noted the Telangana government’s role in the university’s delayed establishment, citing delays in providing land.
  • The Repealing and Amending Bill addresses obsolete laws like the Land Acquisition (Mines) Act, 1885.


The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has approved the second tranche of $337 million for Sri Lanka under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF). This move is part of the debt treatment plan formulated by Sri Lanka in collaboration with its bilateral creditors to address the economic challenges faced by the nation.

Key Points:

  • Tranche Approval: The IMF’s clearance of the second tranche signifies progress in Sri Lanka’s efforts to recover from its financial crisis. The country has received a total of $670 million out of the $3 billion it aims to secure from the IMF.
  • Debt Restructuring Agreements: Sri Lanka has reached agreements with the Official Creditors Committee and the Export-Import Bank of China on debt restructuring, aligning with the EFF targets. These agreements are considered crucial milestones in placing Sri Lanka’s debt on a sustainable path.
  • Debt Composition: While China, India, and Japan are the major bilateral creditors, a substantial portion of Sri Lanka’s debt comes from International Sovereign Bonds (ISBs), owed to private creditors.
  • Bilateral Agreements: Sri Lanka reached an “agreement-in-principle” with India and the Paris Club group of creditors. China has also reportedly agreed to treat its loans to Sri Lanka on comparable terms. However, the terms of these agreements are yet to be made public.
  • IMF Recommendations: The IMF emphasizes the importance of swiftly finalizing Memoranda of Understanding with official creditors and urges Sri Lanka to reach resolutions with external private creditors on comparable terms.


While acknowledging Sri Lanka’s commendable progress in restoring debt sustainability and stabilizing key economic indicators, the IMF underscores the critical need for timely implementation of agreements with official lenders. Additionally, the Fund emphasizes Sri Lanka’s commitment to improving governance and protecting vulnerable segments of the population amid ongoing economic challenges.


The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has released its updated Red List of threatened species, providing a comprehensive assessment of the global biodiversity scenario. The report reveals alarming trends, including an increase in the number of species threatened with extinction and significant risks to freshwater fish.

Overall Threatened Species:

Approximately 44,000 species are now threatened with extinction, marking an increase of 2,000 from the previous year.

Saiga Antelope Status:

The Saiga antelope, existing since the last Ice Age, has transitioned from Critically Endangered to Near Threatened, indicating a positive shift in its conservation status.

Freshwater Fish Risk:

A groundbreaking global assessment of freshwater fish unveils that 25% of these species face extinction, with 17% directly impacted by climate change.

Specific Threatened Freshwater Fish from Kerala:

Four freshwater subterranean fish species from Kerala are identified:

Endangered: Shaji’s Catfish, Abdulkalam’s Blind Cave Catfish, Pangio Bhujia.

Vulnerable: Gollum Snakehead.

About the Red List:


A crucial indicator of global biodiversity health, offering insights into various aspects of species, including population size, habitat, threats, and conservation actions.

Categories of Risk (Decreasing Order):

Extinct, Extinct in the Wild, Critically Endangered, Endangered, Vulnerable, Near Threatened, Least Concern, and Data Deficient.

Criteria for Risk Determination:

Population size reduction, restricted geographical range, small and declining population, very small or confined area, and quantitative analysis of extinction risk.


The IUCN Red List update highlights the escalating threats to biodiversity, emphasizing the critical need for conservation efforts. The inclusion of freshwater fish assessments and the status of specific species, like the Saiga antelope and Kerala’s subterranean fish, underscores the diverse challenges faced by ecosystems globally.


The ENACT Partnership, initiated by Germany and Egypt in collaboration with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) during COP 27 in 2022 at Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, has seen an expansion. Six new countries, along with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), have recently joined this collaborative initiative.

ENACT Partnership Overview:

  • Launch: Germany, Egypt, and IUCN launched ENACT Partnership at COP 27.
  • Objective: Aims to synchronize global endeavors in tackling climate change, land degradation, and biodiversity loss through Nature-based Solutions (NbS).
  • Nature-based Solutions (NbS): Encompasses strategies like wastewater management, sustainable agriculture, forestry, fishing, and pollution abatement.


The growing participation in ENACT underscores the increasing international commitment to cooperative, nature-centric approaches in addressing environmental challenges.


The World Health Organization (WHO) has reported anthrax disease outbreaks in five countries across East and Southern Africa.

Anthrax Overview:

Nature: Infectious disease caused by the spore-forming bacteria Bacillus anthracis.

Affected Species: Primarily impacts livestock such as cattle, sheep, goats, and wild herbivores.

Transmission to Humans: Humans can contract the disease from infected animals or through contaminated animal products.

Treatment: Anthrax vaccines are available for both livestock and humans.

Historical Note: In 2001, anthrax-laced letters in the United States resulted in five fatalities and 17 illnesses, highlighting its potential use as a biological weapon.


December 14, 2023
7:00 am - 11:30 pm
Event Category: