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Daily Current Affairs for UPSC IAS: 16th May 2023

Today’s Current Affairs: 16th May 2023 for UPSC IAS exams, State PSC exams, SSC CGL, State SSC, RRB, Railways, Banking Exam & IBPS, etc

Global Report On Internal Displacement 2023:

The Global Report on Internal Displacement 2023 (GRID-2023) stated that in 2022, over 32 million people were displaced by disasters, 98% of which were triggered by weather-related events such as floods and storms.

Highlights of the Report:

  • Over 71million IDPs across 110 countries and territories at the end of 2022, a 20% increase in a year
  • In India Over 6 lakh were from conflict and violence while 32 thousand were due to disasters
  • 98% of disaster displacements in 2022 were triggered by weather-related events; floods and storms caused 6 out of 10 disaster displacements
  • Pakistan had the highest number of disaster displacements in 2022, followed by China and Afghanistan, while India ranked fourth
  • The prolonged three-year La Niña phenomenon contributed to the rise in weather-related disasters, especially floods, leading to widespread disasters across the globe
  • Sub-Saharan Africa experienced the highest-ever displacement due to disasters in 2022. South Asia witnessed double the annual average of disaster displacements

The Global Report on Internal Displacement 2023 (GRID-2023):

  • It published by the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC), is the world’s leading source of data and analysis on Internal Displacement (ID).
  • The 2023 edition sheds light on the significant increase in the number of people displaced by disasters in 2022 and the complex relationships between disasters, conflict and violence, food security and ID.

World Migratory Bird Day 2023:

World Migratory Bird Day 2023 celebrated on May 13.

  • World Migratory Bird Day 2023 the focus is on water and its importance for these birds.
  • World Migratory Bird Day is a global event held twice a year on the second Saturday of May and October.
  • It brings together bird enthusiasts to promote the conservation of migratory birds and raise awareness about their significance.
  • In 2023, the focus is on water and its importance for these birds.
  • World Migratory Bird Day 2023 will focus on the topic of water and its importance for migratory birds.
  • World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD) is an annual global campaign that aims to raise awareness about the importance of migratory birds and their conservation.
  • Theme 2023:  “Water and its importance for Migratory Bird”
  • The campaign highlights the ecological importance of migratory birds, the threats they face, and the need to take action to protect them.
  • Migratory birds play a vital role in maintaining the balance of nature and the functioning of ecosystems around the world.
  • They also provide important cultural and economic benefits to many communities. WMBD provides an opportunity for individuals, organizations, and governments to come together and take action to protect migratory birds and their habitats.
  • It encourages people to learn more about migratory birds, their migration routes, and the challenges they face. By raising awareness and taking action to protect migratory birds, we can help to ensure their survival for generations to come.
  • World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD) is a worldwide initiative launched in 2006 by the AEWA and CMS Secretariats.
  • It originated from the International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD) in the United States and the Migratory Waterbird Days (MWD) in Africa, Europe, and parts of Asia.
  • The first WMBD took place in Kenya in 2006 and has since been celebrated annually, gaining increasing popularity.
  • The campaign is organized from Bonn, Germany, and in 2018, IMBD and WMBD merged under the unified name “World Migratory Bird Day” to strengthen global recognition and conservation efforts.

Y20 Consultation:

As a part of India’s G20 Presidency, the Youth 20 (Y20) group’s Y20 Consultation was held at University of Kashmir, to consult the youth of the nation on ideas for a better tomorrow and draft an agenda for action on ‘Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction: Making Sustainability a Way of Life’.

  • India assumed the Presidency of G20 on 1st December, 2022 for a period of 1 year up to 30th November 2023. India’s theme for its presidency is enshrined in its civilizational value system of ‘Vasudeva Kutumbakam’
  • Under the framework of G20 Presidency, the Department of Youth Affairs has been entrusted with the responsibility to organise Youth 20 Summit-2023.
  • Youth20 is one of the official Engagement Groups of the G20 and provides a platform for youth to express their perspectives and ideas on G20 priorities.
  • Five Themes:
    • Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction: Making Sustainability a Way of Life
    • Future of Work: Industry 4.0, Innovation, & 21st Century Skills
    • Peacebuilding and Reconciliation: Ushering in an Era of No War
    • Shared Future: Youth in Democracy and Governance
    • Health, Well-being & Sports: Agenda for Youth
  • Participation: 17 Youth delegates from G20 countries like Indonesia, Mexico, Turkey, Russia, Japan, Republic of Korea, United States, Brazil and Nigeria.
  • Students from University of Kashmir and schools around J&K also participated in the event among others.

Samudra Shakti – 23:

INS Kavaratti, indigenously designed & built ASW Corvette, arrived at Batam, Indonesia to participate in the 4th edition of India-Indonesia Bilateral exercise Samudra Shakti-23 from 14-19 May 23

  • Exercise Samudra Shakti is aimed at enhancing interoperability, jointness and mutual cooperation between both the navies.
  • The Harbour phase will comprise Cross deck visits, professional Interactions, Subject Matter Expert Exchanges, and sports fixtures.
  • During the Sea Phase, weapon firing, Helicopter Operations, Anti-submarine warfare & air defence exercises and boarding operations are planned.
  • Samudra Shakti -23 will showcase the high level of interoperability between the two navies and their shared commitment towards peace and stability in the region.
  • The Indonesian Navy will be represented by KRI Sultan Iskandar Muda, CN 235 Maritime Patrol Aircraft and AS565 Panther Helicopter.

Patriot Air Defense System:

Ukrainian forces recently utilized a Patriot air defense system to neutralize Russia’s ‘unstoppable’ ‘Kinzhal hypersonic missile.

  • Patriot System was first used in combat during the 1991 Gulf War, with batteries protecting Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Israel, and later used during the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003.
  • It is a mobile system that usually includes powerful radar, a control station, a power generator, launch stations and other support vehicles.
  • The system has different capabilities depending on the type of interceptor used.
  • The PAC-2 interceptor uses a blast-fragmentation warhead, while the newer PAC-3 missile uses more advanced hit-to-kill technology.

4th Positive Indigenisation List For Defence Public Sector Undertakings:

Defence Ministry approves 4th Positive Indigenisation List for Defence Public Sector Undertakings (DPSU).

  • Continuing the efforts to minimise imports by DPSU, Defence Ministry has approved the 4th Positive Indigenisation List (PIL) of 928 strategically-important Line Replacement Units (LRUs), sub-systems, spares and components etc with import substitution value worth ₹715 crore.
  • This fourth list is in continuation to the previous three PILs, involving LRUs, sub-systems, assemblies, sub-assemblies, spares and components, which were published in December 2021, March 2022 and August 2022, respectively.
  • The positive indigenisation list essentially lists items that the armed forces — Army, Navy, and Air Force will procure only from domestic manufacturers.
  • These manufacturers could be from the private sector or Defense Public Sector Undertakings (DPSUs).
  • The Government has introduced a comprehensive revamped ‘Make and Innovation’ procedure to reduce dependency on arms and promote indigenous manufacturing of defence equipment.
  • The ‘Make and Innovation’ procedure has been introduced in DAP-20 to facilitate indigenous design and development of defence equipment through private participation with both government funding and industry funding.

Mitochondrial Replacement Therapy:

The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA), the U.K. fertility regulator, recently confirmed that less than five children have been born using mitochondrial replacement therapy (MRT).

  • In 2015, the United Kingdom became the first country to regulate mitochondrial replacement therapy (MRT).
  • Mitochondrial Replacement Therapy (MRT) is a new form of reproductive in-vitro fertilization (IVF) which works on the principle of replacing a women’s abnormal mitochondrial DNA (mt-DNA) with the donor’s healthy one.
  • People have two types of DNA in their cells, nuclear DNA, which is inherited from both parents and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), which is inherited only from the mother.
  • MRT is designed to prevent women who are carriers of mitochondrial diseases from passing on these heritable genetic diseases to their children.
  • MRT involves using an egg from an egg donor who doesn’t have mutations.
  • The nucleus of the egg is removed and replaced with the nuclear DNA from the woman who has mitochondrial DNA mutations.
  • The egg is then fertilized with the father’s sperm in the embryology lab.
  • If it grows into an embryo for transfer during IVF treatment, the embryo would be free of mitochondrial disease.
  • Mitochondria are membrane-bound cell organelles that generate most of the chemical energy needed to power the cell’s biochemical reactions.
  • Mitochondria are often referred to as the powerhouses of the cell.
  • Chemical energy produced by the mitochondria is stored in a small molecule called adenosine triphosphate (ATP). ATP is the chemical energy “currency” of the cell that powers the cell’s metabolic activities.
  • Generally, mitochondria, and therefore mitochondrial DNA, are inherited only from the mother.

Eretmoptera Murphyi : Invasive Species

A tiny flightless Midge (small insect) called Eretmoptera murphyi is changing the soil composition of Antarctica’s Signy Island.

  • It is an invasive species on Antarctic Signy Island.
  • Eretmoptera Murphyi is a native of South Georgia, a sub-Antarctic Island, and was accidentally introduced to Signy in the 1960s during a botany experiment. Its proliferation became apparent in the 1980s.
  • Eretmoptera murphyi feasts on dead organic matter and has led to faster plant decomposition, thus increasing the soil nitrate levels by three-five times compared to places on the island where the midge (small insects which bite) is absent and only native invertebrate species live.
  • High levels of nitrate can be toxic for other plant species, and it can also contaminate groundwater. High levels of nitrate in water can lead to excessive algae growth, which can deplete oxygen levels and harm aquatic life.
  • Experts believe that the spread of this midge, murphyi in Antarctica may have been caused by humans who carried insects on their shoes.

Adopt a Heritage Scheme : Update

Union Minister of Culture recently said that the ministry is likely to launch a revamped ‘Adopt a Heritage’ or ‘Monument Mitra’ scheme.

  • Heritage Scheme is an initiative of the Ministry of Tourism in collaboration with the Ministry of Culture and the Archaeological Survey of India.
  • It was launched in September 2017 on World Tourism Day.
  • Under it, the government invites entities, including public sector companies, private sector firms, as well as individuals, to develop selected monuments and heritage and tourist sites across India.
  • The project aims to encourage these entities to become ‘Monument Mitras’ and take up the responsibility of developing and upgrading the basic and advanced tourist amenities at these sites.
  • The Monument Mitras are selected by the ‘oversight and vision committee,’ co-chaired by the Tourism Secretary and the Culture Secretary, on the basis of the bidder’s ‘vision’ for the development of all amenities at the heritage site.
  • The oversight committee also has the power to terminate a memorandum of understanding in case of non-compliance or non-performance.
  • The corporate sector is expected to use corporate social responsibility (CSR) funds for the upkeep of the site.
  • The Monument Mitras, in turn, will get limited visibility on the site premises and on the Incredible India website.

Eighteenth Session Of The United Nations Forum On Forests:

The eighteenth session of the United Nations Forum on Forests (UNFF18), held in New York from May 8-12, 2023, brought together delegates from around the world to discuss the relationship between sustainable forest management (SFM), energy, and the achievement of the United Nations-mandated Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

  • In a recent development, experts have underscored the significance of practicing SFM in tropical regions.
  • With the surge in bioenergy consumption since 2013, there has been a mounting strain on forests, making the need for sustainable sourcing of tropical timber even more crucial.
  • The rise in bioenergy usage, driven by the global push for renewable energy sources, has inadvertently created additional pressure on tropical forests.
  • As bioenergy relies on biomass, such as wood pellets and chips, as fuel, the demand for timber has intensified.
  • This has raised concerns about the potential negative impact on forest ecosystems, biodiversity, and the overall sustainability of these regions.
  • By implementing sustainable practices, such as selective logging and reforestation, the long-term health and vitality of these forests can be safeguarded.
  • Forestry director of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), highlighted the significant contribution of forest ecosystems to renewable energy requirements.
  • Over five billion people worldwide benefit from non-timber forest products, with forests providing 55% of these renewable energy needs.
  • The Emissions Gap Report’s findings underscore the immense climate mitigation potential that forests hold.
  • Through processes such as carbon sequestration, forests act as carbon sinks, absorbing and storing substantial amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
  • By preserving and sustainably managing forests, nations can leverage this natural capacity to help bridge the emissions gap and achieve climate targets.

6th India-Canada Ministerial Dialogue On Trade And Investment:

The 6th India-Canada Ministerial Dialogue on Trade and Investment (MDTI) was held in Ottawa, Canada.

  • The Canadian Minister expressed her support for India as the G20 Chair and its priorities in the G20 Trade and Investment Working Group.
  • She expressed her intention to participate in the upcoming G-20 Trade and Investment Ministerial meeting in India scheduled for August 2023.
  • The Ministers highlighted the importance of cooperation in sectors such as clean technologies for infrastructure development, critical minerals, electric vehicles and batteries, renewable energy/hydrogen, and artificial intelligence (AI).
  • The Ministers emphasised the importance of government-to-government coordination to promote critical mineral supply chain resiliency.
  • They committed to an annual dialogue at the official level during the Prospectors and Developers Association Conference (PDAC) in Toronto to discuss mutual interests.
  • The Ministers agreed to rework and relaunch the Canada-India CEO Forum with renewed focus and priorities.
  • The CEO Forum would serve as a platform to enhance business-to-business engagement and could be announced at an agreed-upon early date.
  • The Canadian Minister announced her leadership of a Team Canada trade mission to India in October 2023.
  • This mission aims to strengthen trade and investment ties, with a significant business delegation.