Environmental Terminologies and issues related with pollution/water conservation etc


  • Many questions from this section have appeared in UPSC prelims. For example Ecotone, Coral Reefs, Carbon Credits, Edge Species etc
  • Problems of Persistent Organic Pollutant
  • Acid rains- Content and impact
  • Ozone depletion- Atmospheric ozone
  • Global Dimming
  • Eutrophication- Water pollution
  • Diseases- Minamata and silicosis etc
  • Biomagnification, Bioaccumulation and Bio-concentration
  • Bioremediation
  • Issue of Oil Zappers

 Let us check one such question asked in 2011



Regarding “carbon credits”, which one of the following statements is not correct?

(a) The carbon credit system was ratified in conjunction with the Kyoto Protocol

(b) Carbon credits are awarded to countries or groups that have reduced greenhouse gases below their emission quota

(c) The goal of the carbon credit system is to limit the increase of carbon dioxide emission

(d) Carbon credits are- traded at a price fixed from time to time by the United Nations Environment Programme

 Solution (b)


Note: Now let us follow questions from recent current affairs and see whether we can form questions on such themes. These terms were in news for sometime


Consider the following with respect to ‘EDGE’ species.

1. These species have few close relatives and are often extremely distinct in the way they look, live and behave.

2. These unique species are also on the verge of extinction, and if they disappear there will be nothing like them left on the planet.

Select the incorrect option

(a) Only 1

(b) Only 2

(c) Both

(d) None

Answer: None


Current Environmental Issues


  • Indoor Air pollution- Air Quality Control
  • Land Degradation and Land use
  • Formation of Ground Level Ozone
  • Bharat Stage Mission
  • National Water Policy
  • Solid Waste Management
  • Use of Plastics
  • Marine Pollution and impact on Coral reefs and Lagoons
  • Polar Amplification
  • Ocean Acidification and impact
  • Water and Carbon Footprints
  • Ecological Debts
  • Organic Farming and Vermi-compost etc


Let us check some questions based on current events.



Consider the statements with reference to ‘Blue Carbon’

(a) It is carbon stored in coastal, terrestrial and marine ecosystem

(b) The Blue Carbon Initiative currently focuses on carbon in coastal and terrestrial ecosystems – mangroves, tidal marshes, sea grasses and forests

(c) The rates of blue carbon sequestration and storage capacities in ecosystems are comparable to (and often higher than) those in carbon-rich terrestrial ecosystems such as tropical rainforests and peatlands.

Correct code/s

(a) Only 1

(b) Only 3

(c)  2 and 3

(d) 1,2 and 3

 Answer: b


Note: Be attentive to read about any controversial issue. For example, all of you must be aware about ‘Mid Day Meal’ Mishap. Now see the question that can be part of environment



Consider the statements with respect to ‘Monocrotophos’ believed to be a cause of mid day meal mishap.

(a) It is non biodegradable pesticide

(b) It has high environmental persistence and make the soil toxic

(c) It leads to bioaccumulationCorrect code/s

(a) Only 1

(b) 2 and 3

(c) 1,2 and 3

(d) None

Answer: None


Monocrotophos is principally used in agriculture, as a relatively cheap pesticide. However, it is also used frequently used as a tool to commit suicide. It is acutely toxic to birds and humans. Being also a persistent organic pollutant, it has been banned in the U.S. and many other countries.

Source to Prepare:

  • We will never guide you or make you restrict your choices. There are people who qualify without even reading NCERT’s or any most followed resources.
  • The key to their success is smart study. They spend more time in chalking out what not to study than what to study.
  • If they follow one resource, they keep on revising from the same along with complementing it with dynamic updates.
  • If you trust your resource, please stick to it. Never rush to fascinating books or suggested resources that are never ending. You are bound to fall. Because you are running behind them.
  • STATIC: Basic source or say, best source is NCERT- Geography-Class 6th to 12th and Biology-Class 11th and 12th (Old and New)- A must read and ICSE books – Class 9th, 10th, 11th
  • Indian Year Book-Environment and Geography Chapters
  • DYNAMIC: The Hindu and Down to Earth




                                                                               Previous year Questions, 2011-2014


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