Going by media reports, the Supreme Court has agreed to take up the stubble-burning issue on November 10. For sure, millions of hapless victims of unabated stubble burning, being carried out by some farmers in Punjab and Haryana, must be heaving a sigh of relief.
While the AQI level has reached alarming levels in Delhi-NCR, adjoining areas like Chandigarh, Panchkula and even some residential areas situated in the foothills of Himachal Pradesh have also started experiencing the ill-effects thereof. What prevents the State governments concerned from taking exemplary action against the offenders remains the moot question?
However, with the apex court itself taking up this matter, one should expect that such an unethical and imprudent practice would be addressed soon.
This refers to ‘Show the money’ (November 4). The increasing frequency of adverse weather, manifesting itself in devastating deluges and crippling droughts, has become a global phenomenon, with the poor and developing world bearing the brunt. While the Paris Accord was a major breakthrough in humanity’s fight against global warming-induced climate change, the failure of the developed world to walk the talk on their promises relating to transferring green technology and helping developing countries by contributing to the Global Green Fund has left much to be desired.
With COP 27 scheduled to take off from the Egyptian city Sharm el-Sheikh from November 6, it is incumbent upon the developed world to reaffirm its commitment towards its climate pledges and walk the extra mile to ensure climate justice is not an empty rhetoric and a reality for which they need to help the poorer nations in their climate mitigation and adaptation measures.
Apropos ‘Why GM mustard is needed?’ (November 4), the write-up has cleared several apprehensions of environmentalists who are opposing commercial production of GM crops. With the changing global situation, any imbalance in crop cultivation is resulting in severe price volatility.
It is time, therefore, that genetically modified food crops like mustard are tried for commercial use. The research fraternity, on its part, must take farmers into confidence by explaining the advantages of the new technology.
Halekere Village, Karnataka
Our zeal for embracing newer technologies has improved, but yet wanting. If it is largely due to our angst against Western researchers fathering technologies to profit, it must challenge us to invest funds and energy to carry out studies tailored to our own needs. We then had apprehensions of not having done adequate field tests prior to large-scale commercialisation.
In Bt brinjal there had been extended deferment. Bt cotton had its ups and downs to find acceptance, but is now found to be rewarding. Bt mustard too was suspect ab-initio, but has been allowed recently.
To wait and err on the side of caution on new technology is natural. But to be overly circumspect is self-defeating. Faced with relentless onslaught of climate change, we must strive to alter our mindset to bio-tech crops. Food security is increasingly set to become a global concern.