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Synopsis and Review-Think and Learn [Day 37]

  • IAS baba
  • August 5, 2015
  • 2
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Archives-Think and Learn-Mains 2015

Synopsis and Review – Think and Learn [Day 37]

GS 1) How are coral reefs formed? Assess the impact of climate change and anthropogenic factors on coral reefs. (200 Words, 10 Marks)

The Top Answer for this question is written by – Draconian

Ans) Coral reefs are some of the most diverse marine ecosystems in the world held together by

calcium-carbonate structures extracted by corals from sea-water Teeming with life, these economically and environmentally important ecosystems provide a home for many unique marine organisms.

Examples: The Great Barrier Reef(Australia), The Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System,The Red Sea.

Often called as ‘Rainforest of Oceans’, they are under threat from climate change and anthropogenic factors.

Impact of climate change:

1. Ocean acidification— caused when oceans absorb immense amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2) released into the atmosphere through the burning of fossil fuels — inhibits coral’s ability to produce the calcium carbonate exoskeletons they rely on for shelter.

2. Coral Bleaching: minor changes in water temperatures drive away zooxanthellae an algae on which corals depend for nutrition. So, Coral cells are rendered lifeless and it’s color vanish making reef white.

3.Sea level rise – caused by melting of sea ice and thermal expansion of the oceans could also cause problems for some reefs by making them too deep to receive adequate sunlight, important for survival.

Anthropogenic Factors

1. Fishing practices:fishing practices such as cyanide fishing, “blast fishing” with explosives, and overfishing with trawlers can destroy and harm corals.

2. Chemicals from sunscreen, pollution from sewage, and herbicides and pesticides used in farms

or home gardens can all wash into oceans and poison coral.

3. Coastal development and Tourism: The growth of coastal cities and towns generates a range of threats to nearby coral reefs. Also, destroyed or disturbed by dredging activities to make deep-water channels or marinas, and through the dumping of waste materials.


GS 2) Should India worry about recent geopolitical developments taking place in Afghanistan? Critically comment. (200 Words, 10 Marks)

The Top Answer for this question is written by – Kiran

Ans) India and Afghanistan’s relationship dates back to history. India has a lot of startegic interests in Afghanistan and is the key to fuel rich central Asia. India, traditionally not being a donor country has donated and invested around $2bn in Afghanistan. India is the fifth largest donor in this war torn country.

But as per the recent trend, Kabul is showing more affinity towards Islamabad. Recently, the peace talks between Afghanistan and Taliban hoisted by Pakistan underscores this factor. A stable and peaceful Afghanistan is a precursor for various Indian projects like TAPI, mining of Hajigak iron ore etc. Even though the peace talk is brokered by Pakistan, it is for the greater good. But the flip side of this is India has been sidelined from the talks. This is a cause of concern for India.

Taliban who have close relationship with the ISI and military establishment of Pakistan can hamper India’s interest in Afghanistan. Having a Indian establishment in Afghanistan will always be a worrying factor for Pakistan. And also, Pakistan can use Afghanistan as a backyard in case of war against India.

India should calibrate its policy towards Afghanistan to accommodate the recent changes and if needed, should open her purse more to protect our interests. India currently has invested more in education, health care etc. More possible investment can be done in the areas of energy, military etc. A stable and peaceful Afghanistan is what we should aim for.


GS 3) Examine why using non-sterilised syringes is dangerous to our health and also examine the latest developments in finding alternatives to syringes. (200 Words, 10 Marks)

The Top Answer for this question is written by – Enticer

Ans) Syringes are used for administering medicines and taking blood samples, with this purpose they harbour various viruses and disease causing pathogens when injected into the patient’s body.

Risks involved with the usage of non-sterilised syringes are like getting infected with the HIV, if the syringe was used to inject any AIDS patient, the blood diseases like Hepatitis as happened in the 1980s, hundreds of thousands of Egyptians received a series of 12-16 injections to treat a debilitating water-borne disease called schistosomiasis. The treatments were delivered with needles that contained the Hepatitis C virus (HCV) with no cure.

Health workers are more vulnerable as they use to administer to patient these syringes, if needle of syringe gets injected to them, they get affected with patient’s disease.

Latest developments in finding alternatives to syringes are :

a) Use of Pen devices for checking diabetes etc in which skin is punctured and blood sample is collected and analyzed by device.

b) Needle Free injectors using liquid stream for puncturing and injection is administered.

c) Administering medicines through oral drops like Polio drops.

d) Use of capsules which can be used for both testing as well as administering medicine


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