Tag Archives: Land

Pollution, heat push up ozone level (1)

Good morning friends.  Pollution has been as any significant change in the physical, chemical or biological characteristics of the air, water and land that many negatively affect mankind, whether directly by being harmful to people or indirectly by causing natural resources to deteriorate. 

Despite early warnings, the level of ozone, known to be extremely harmful for health, in Delhi has been rising steadily. According to CSE latest findings, ozone levels have been unusually high this year, very often much above the standards proposed by the environment ministry. This is a direct consequence of a very hot summer and high pollution levels in the city.

The study, based on data available with the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) reveals that in April, ozone levels have almost every day been high than the proposed standard of 90 microgram/cu m for a daily maximum eight-hourly average. The standards that have been in the pipeline for a while now are awaiting notification by the Ministry of Environment and Forests.

‘‘Ozone is not emitted by any source. It is instead the result of a photochemical reaction involving NOx, hydrocarbons and other pollutants under high temperature. This year has been specially hot but pollution is also growing in the city. It is a known fact that diesel vehicles emit three times more NOx than petrol vehicles and the government needs to take steps to control the growing number of vehicles,’’ said Anumita Roychowdhury, associate director, CSE. – The Times of India

toireporter@timesgroup.com

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India test fires BrahMos missile

Good morning friends.  As I was working here on my table, just taking my eyes to relax, I came across with the news about the missile. 

India on Sunday test fired supersonic surface to surface ‘BrahMos’ missile.  Test of supersonic cruise missile was conducted in Pokharan in Rajasthan and it successfully hit its target near Ajasar.

 

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India Successfully Test Fired BrahMos cruise missile

 

This was the third test-firing of the latest Block II version of the missile.

Earlier, two tests were held on January 20 and March 4.

Chief of Army Staff General Deepak Kapoor and several high officials and DRDO scientists were present.

BrahMos cruise missile with a striking range of 290 km, can be launched from submarines, ships, aircraft or land.

The ship-launched and land-based missiles can carry a 200-kg warhead, whereas the aircraft-launched variant can carry a 300-kg warhead.

BrahMos missile derives its name from the Brahmaputra River in India and Moscow River in Russia.

Reference:  news.xinhuanet

Pollution could be turning you obese

Good morning friends.  Many of us knows that pollution has bee as any significant change in the physical, chemical or biological characteristics of the air, water and land that many negatively affect mankind, whether directly by being harmful to people or indirectly by causing natural resources to deteriorate. 

A pollutant might be triggering obesity by influencing gene activity, according to a new study.  

For example tributyltin, a chemical is used in antifouling paints for boats, as a wood and textile preservative, and as a pesticide on high-value food crops, among many other applications.

Tributyltin affects sensitive receptors in animal cells, from water fleas to humans, at very low concentrations – a thousand times lower than pollutants that are known to interfere with sexual development of wildlife species.

Tributyltin and its relatives are highly toxic to snails, causing female snails to develop male sexual characteristics, and it bioaccumulates in fish and shellfish.

The harmful effects of the chemical on the liver  and the nervous and immune systems in mammals are well known, but its powerful effects on the cellular components known as retinoid X receptors (RXRs) in a range of species are a recent discovery.

When activated, RXRs can migrate into the nuclei of cells and switch on genes that cause the growth of fat storage cells and regulate whole body metabolism — compounds that affect a related receptor often associated with RXRs are now used to treat diabetes.

RXRs are normally activated by signalling molecules found throughout the body.

Taisen Iguchi and Yoshinao Katsu of the Graduate University for Advanced Studies in Japan described how RXRs and related receptors are also strongly activated by tributyltin and similar chemicals.

Tributyltin impairs reproduction in water fleas through its effects on a receptor similar to the RXR. In addition, tributyltin causes the growth of excess fatty tissue in newborn mice exposed to it in the womb.

The effects of tributyltin on RXR-like nuclear receptors might therefore be widespread throughout the animal kingdom.

The rise in obesity in humans over the past 40 years parallels the increased use of industrial chemicals over the same period.

Iguchi and Katsu maintain that it is “plausible and provocative” to associate the obesity epidemic to chemical triggers present in the modern environment.

The study appeared in BioScience.

ref: thetimesofindia