Few months before I was attending a conference on smart agriculture with focus on climate change – climate resilient crops. Amidst of controversies laying around the climate change, this was timely. We have heard that few world leaders have called climate change a hoax. The earth’s atmosphere keeps cooling and heating over several centuries, as if it is a natural cycle, and self interest groups are creating mess. This is what a section of public feels. Funding related to climate change has gone down. Before, you take a stance, I would like you to first see this movie before going any further (available on Youtube).
Must Watch Movie on Climate Change : An Inconvenient Truth by Al Gore (2006).
Now, that you have seen the movie, lets face the facts:
CO2 (the green house gas) concentration has reached 406ppm and will reach 634ppm by the end of this century. Thus, CO2 level has increased by over 35% in the past 200 years. For every 1C temperature rise, crop yield is estimated to be reduced by 5%.
Agriculture is the most sensitive sector to climate change. There may be 12% less than average rainfall in the coming years.
Drought will be a fairly common phenomenon. Now, drought is happening once in every 3 – 5 years, whereas during pre-independence era, drought happened once in 12 years.
Long lived natural pools such as soils, perennial green biomass and forest acts as sinks for reducing carbon foot print. However, these pools are decreasing and many forest species are becoming extinct.
Coping with adverse impact of climate change need careful management of natural resources like soil, water and electricity.
Increase in temperature could reduce crop growth periods, alter photosynthetic processes, effect pest populations, and nutrient loss in soils.
Rise in temperature will be good for some crops like soybean, and mixed (sorghum and millets) and bad (rice and wheat) for others but water scarcity will be the spoilsport.
Studies conducted in Himalayan regions confirmed that shifting pattern of crop cultivation, thus effecting rural population and their livelihood.
Enhanced frequency and duration of extreme weather events such as flood, drought, cyclone, cold and heat wave may adversely affect agricultural productivity.
However, rise in temperature may decrease cold waves, and frost events leading to reduced damage to frost-sensitive crops such as chickpea, mustard, potato and other vegetables.
In the history of life sciences, never before such a great discovery has been made, which will potentially change the way, we deal with aspects of life sciences particularly in medicine, therapeutics, food and agriculture. CRISPR-Cas, the gene editing technology, has been described as the greatest transformative technology of the year 2015, in the prestigious science journal Nature.
CRISPR stands for Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeat and Cas for CRISPR associated proteins, which were identified as unusual sequences in the bacterial genome by Ishano et al, in the year, 1987 and subsequently named as CRISPR, by Jansen in 2002. CRISPR acted as a prokaryotic defence system against invading bacteria and virus, consisting of short repetitions of sequences in the genome followed by spacer sequences. Short sequences were copied from first time invading microbes and were integrated in the CRISPR genetic library. Whenever, a second round of microbial invasion took place, small RNAs, produced by transcription of CRISPR genetic library, together with mobilized Cas endo-nuclease enzyme, would cleave and destroy the invading pathogens. However, it was not until 2012, when the actual value of the CRISPR-Cas mechanism was elucidated, in genetically editing prokaryotic cell in the lab.
There have been rapid advances in using CRISPR technology in human therapeutics. A research group from China, for example, created history recently by injecting a patient having aggressive lung cancer with edited PD-1 gene, which could defeat cancer. Few think that this is going to be a sputnik 2.0, a biomedical cold war between China and the USA . This is not the only Case. Peking University also hopes to start clinical trials with CRISPR in renal, prostate and bladder cancer subject to necessary approvals and funding. Please do refer to the link below to see how Gene -editing will change the world around us.
Gene-Editing Technology Has Successfully Targeted Cancer’s “Command Centre”
Sudden rise of unpredictable events happening around us (this year alone) are going to effect our life, in ways that we still don’t know or cannot comprehend completely. Brexit, demonetisation in India, US elections, raging war in the middle east to name a few. We still need to wait and watch before jumping on to conclusions. Pessimists are as usual crying that world order will collapse. We are moving on to a unknown territory beyond our comfort zone. Per-haves, like disruptive technologies, these changing events will be the new norm.
At the core remains, one important theme, FAIR PLAY. Why this is important ? Accordingly, to a Credit Suisse report, top 1% of the world population owns more than 50% of total wealth while, in India this figure goes up to 58%. Unequal wealth distribution breeds social unrest. People want change. What these events are going to do (hopefully!!), is to create a common ground (order) for all of us to grow and prosper. Pundits will cry and label these events as anti-capitalist. However, this is not true. Capitalism bring competitions and survival of fittest prevails. At times, MONOPOLY happens which, prevent entry of new players. These decisions may end MONOPOLY in someways or atleast change the rules of the game. And this is important. GLOCAL (Think global do local) is the new mantra. We have to behave like global citizens. Focus is on FAIR not necessarily FREE trade. Because FREE trade can do more harm than good over a long time, particularly to some industries and drive away enthusiasm among younger generation. Such important world events will also mitigate several policy lapses/ decisions taken in the past which, have not entirely gone right. This time however, there seems to be a strong desire to rectify past mistakes. For social good…. society remains the fabric of human existence and therefore, FAIR policy decisions taken by new leaders are going to do good for all of us. There is no need to panic. In long run for our own good, such policy decision will help us create a new world order where, smart work will be given a due credit.
In today’s world, savings is a buzz word. However, the context has changed. Instead of saving money, saving is linked to the great varieties of discount on products available with e-commerce sites like that of amazon, flipkart, snapdeal and you name it, the list is growing day by day . That’s another thing, whether you really, really need that great stuff at 90% off !!. Greed is good… indeed. Greed power economies, turns the growth cycle northwards and creates jobs. We are witnessing a transition from savers economy to spenders economy. In the name of globalisation, we are trying to copy the developed economies without understanding the long term effect and in our context seriously. We are so much focused on today, that we feel tomorrow will be some what take care of by itself. That tomorrow…we will of course need some form of divine intervention, but we would have crossed our limits and it will be too late to change course. In short term, such neo-saving mantra will make us feel good. However, the very fact that we are moving away from real saving mentality ( I mean real saving – not discounts wala saving) will prove to be disastrous in long term. This is bound to cause strain on our aspects of our social existence.
Thus, I feel we should be prudent to use e-commerce tools to plan and augment our real money saving mentality. There is no denying of the fact that such sites have given stiff competition to the very existence of the brick and mortar store and made our life simple. However, we must focus on real wealth creation and that is only possible, if we tread the path preached by our earlier generations…. thus old is gold…. and may be focus on that metallic gold… so, next time get some good offer on that gold bar, go for it 😉
More than 50% of the Indian population depends on farming and agriculture is a way of life here. Agriculture/Forestry/Aquaculture combined together contributes 13% of the National GDP Uplifting rural population will go a long way for our sustained growth story. With the rapid growth of telecom and internet, an Indian farmer is more informed than ever before. He has a wide range of tools available for making choices related to his farm inputs, needs and proceeds. Industries are sweating it out to capture the untamed potential of rural market starting from FMG to banking services. At the core remains the most important input “the seed” which increases crop productivity. Biotech assisted technologies are changing the agricultural scenario, faster development of high yielding varieties with improved traits. Our country has become self reliant in her food and feed needs. Early identification, development and adoption of modern technologies, be it in agricultural biotechnologies, conventional breeding, telecommunication, IT-services, commodity markets (e-commerce), agricultural knowledge hubs, agricultural engineering, Indigenous technologies, rural folklores, micro-finance and rural banking (internet banking) will pave way for increasing rural income.
What do you think will be the modern/emerging technologies that will change livelihood of our rural masses ? What will be next blockbuster which will bring another round of agriculture (green) revolution ? And how do we close the gap of distrust associated with the adoption of any novel technologies while continuing to protect our biodiversity and our traditional way of rural ecosystem.
You must have read many articles mentioning importance of having healthy food for our well being. Here, I am pitching in for healthy thoughts. Just like our body, our mind has to be fed with good thoughts. Otherwise mind is robbed of its unlimited potential and is replaced by superficial things like being eternal consumers. They say ‘greed is good’, it fuels growth but at whose behest. Is the growth sustainable or just another bubble going to burst ? just another recession down the corner, which we cannot foresee? Life span has increased, virtually I suggest ? Every good deed or an idea starts from the mind. Lets nourish it. We need to make it a habit of serving ourselves, something very nourishing and fulfilling every now-and-then. Everything else will be taken care of.
Welcome to my blog. This space is dedicated to life (Eat-Pray-Love), that matters us the most. Well you may say here comes another blogger with another blog. Hmmm.. this is my blog for Happy Sapiens.
We all have (infinite) dreams (as I say this, the list is growing everyday, as our perception of our surroundings are rapidly evolving).
As we travel through the web of life (real with some virtual – our web presence being one) with dreamy eyes, our priorities, needs, goals, destinations, relationship, you name it, almost everything is evolving, changing fast, very fast..and mostly for all of us there seems the surge or need to join the eternal never-ending race.
But at the core, we all want happiness and meaning to our life.
Are we here by chance ? or is there a more deeper meaning to our existence ? Need to dig deeper in our conscience ? A google search reveals that more than 110 billion people lived before us. Do our existence really matter ? Have we ended up becoming just another number ( a bank account, credit card, net worth and a customer number).
Please do keep visiting to my Happy Sapiens Blog.
The author is another common man who wants to live a simple contended life. In the journey to reach his destination, he seeks the ultimate experiences that life has to offer.