Daily News Analysis 27 Nov 2023 (The Hindu)

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Here are the topics covered for  27th   November 2023: 

GS-2: Combating Child Pornography

GS-3:Atmospheric Waves Experiment (AWE), SAF-ATF Blending Mandate from 2027 , Antarctic Ozone Hole

Facts for prelims:  Kambala Buffalo Race, Amaterasu


Combating Child Pornography


  • Recent developments in the EU highlight the consensus among lawmakers to draft rules compelling major online services like Google and Meta to identify and remove Online Child Pornography. The debate revolves around preserving end-to-end encryption while addressing the distribution of Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM).


Child Pornography:

  • Child pornography involves the creation, distribution, or possession of sexually explicit material featuring minors.
  • Online child pornography specifically refers to the digital production, distribution, or possession of explicit content involving minors through various digital platforms.
  • The Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act, 2019 in India defines child pornography as any visual depiction of sexually explicit conduct involving a child, including photographs, videos, or digital images indistinguishable from actual children.


Indian context: 

  • The National Crime Report Bureau (NCRB) reported an alarming increase in child pornography cases in India, rising from 738 cases in 2020 to 969 in 2021.
  • Child pornography has severe psychological effects on children, leading to depression, anger, and anxiety.
  • Regular exposure may create a sense of sexual gratification, fostering a willingness to replicate such behaviours in real life.
  • Experts equate pornography to addiction, suggesting it has a similar impact on the brain as drug or alcohol consumption.
  • Adolescent pornography use is linked to stronger beliefs in gender stereotypes, particularly among males.
  • Male adolescents who frequently view pornography are more likely to perceive women as sex objects, potentially reinforcing attitudes supportive of sexual violence.


Challenges to Addressing Pornography:

  • Socioeconomic Disparities: The impact of pornography varies between children from different socioeconomic backgrounds, necessitating a nuanced approach.
  • Cultural Perspectives on Sex: India\’s cultural perception of sex as a taboo topic contributes to a lack of healthy family dialogue, leading children to seek information externally and potentially fostering addiction.
  • Detection Challenges: Law enforcement agencies face significant difficulties in detecting and effectively monitoring child pornography activities.
  • Obscene Content Proliferation: The presence of explicit content on mainstream websites and OTT services complicates the differentiation between non-vulgar and vulgar content.


Indian Initiatives to Tackle Child Pornography:

  • POCSO Act, 2012: Amended in 2019, it introduced stringent measures, including the death penalty for aggravated sexual assault on children.
  • IT Act 2000: Provides a legal framework to address issues related to online activities, including child pornography.
  • Child Abuse Prevention and Investigation Unit: Specialized units dedicated to preventing and investigating child abuse cases.
  • Beti Bachao Beti Padhao: A government initiative to promote the welfare and education of girls.
  • Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015: Focused on the rehabilitation and protection of juvenile offenders.
  • Child Marriage Prohibition Act (2006): Aims to eradicate the practice of child marriages.
  • Child Labour Prohibition and Regulation Act, 2016: Addresses the issue of child labour.
  • POCSO Courts under Special Fast Track Courts: Expedited legal processes to ensure swift justice for child-related offences



  • A clear distinction must be made between child pornography and content involving children. Immediate bans should apply to the former, while regulations should govern the latter.
  • Government efforts should focus on developing technological solutions to prevent accidental exposure to explicit content, especially for children.
  • Compulsory sex education in schools and equipping parents and teachers with modern-era skills are crucial components of addressing the issue effectively.
  • Addressing the challenges posed by child pornography requires a multifaceted approach involving legal frameworks, technological solutions, and societal awareness. India\’s initiatives, combined with global cooperation, are essential in safeguarding vulnerable sections of society from the grave implications of online child sexual abuse.


Atmospheric Waves Experiment (AWE) 


  • NASA\’s Atmospheric Waves Experiment (AWE) has been introduced in response to increasing disruptions in satellite communication and GPS systems
  • The experiment is particularly vital in understanding space weather, where Earth\’s extreme weather events influence atmospheric gravity waves (AGWs). 
  • The launch of AWE is anticipated to provide crucial insights into the interconnected dynamics of Earth\’s weather and space phenomena.


About Atmospheric Waves Experiment (AWE):

  • Space weather refers to dynamic conditions in the space environment, influenced by solar activity and interactions between the solar wind and planetary magnetic fields. 
  • These conditions impact various human activities and technologies, including satellite communication, navigation, power systems, astronaut safety, aviation, and space exploration.
  • Atmospheric Gravity Waves (AGWs) are a key component in the study of space weather. Generated by temperature contrasts and vertical displacement of stable air during extreme weather events, AGWs extend into space, shaping space weather phenomena.
  • AWE, part of NASA\’s Heliophysics Explorers Program, aims to explore the connections between lower atmospheric waves and space weather. The experiment is mounted on the International Space Station (ISS) and utilizes an Advanced Mesospheric Temperature Mapper (ATMT).


Operational Mechanism:

  • AWE observes colourful air glowing in Earth\’s atmosphere, specifically at the mesopause (85 to 87 km above the Earth’s surface).
  • Equipped with ATMT and imaging radiometers, AWE captures brightness at specific wavelengths.

Mission Objective:


  • Understand the forces driving space weather.
  • Investigate the potential impact of terrestrial weather on space weather.
  • The launch of AWE promises groundbreaking insights into the interconnected dynamics of Earth\’s extreme weather events and space phenomena. 
  • By studying AGWs, AWE aims to contribute valuable data to weather models, improving weather forecasts and space weather predictions.



  • Space weather disruptions affecting satellite communication and GPS systems highlight the need for a better understanding of AGWs.
  • AWE faces the challenge of capturing accurate data on AGWs and their interactions with space weather, considering the complex nature of atmospheric phenomena.



  • NASA\’s Atmospheric Waves Experiment (AWE) holds immense significance in advancing our understanding of space weather dynamics influenced by Earth\’s extreme weather events. 
  • As disruptions in satellite communication and GPS systems escalate, the data obtained by AWE is expected to contribute significantly to improving weather forecasts and enhancing our ability to predict and mitigate the impact of space weather on various technological systems and activities.


SAF-ATF Blending Mandate from 2027


  • The National Biofuel Coordination Committee (NBCC) has unveiled the initial indicative targets for blending Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) with Aviation Turbine Fuel (ATF), paving the way for the eventual imposition of mandatory blending. This move aligns with the forthcoming mandatory phase of the International Civil Aviation Organization\’s (ICAO) Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA), scheduled to commence in 2027.


International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO):

  • Founded in 1947, ICAO is a specialized agency of the UN based in Quebec, Canada, tasked with coordinating international air navigation principles and techniques.
  • It facilitates the planning and development of international air transport to ensure safe and orderly growth.


Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA):

  • CORSIA is a global market-based measure designed to counterbalance international aviation CO2 emissions, aiming to stabilize emission levels.
  • Exclusively applicable to international aviation, CORSIA mandates airlines globally to offset any growth in carbon dioxide emissions beyond 2020 levels.
  • Offsetting is achieved by aeroplane operators acquiring and cancelling emissions units from the global carbon market.
  • ICAO adopted Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs) for CORSIA implementation under the Convention on International Civil Aviation in 2018.


National Biofuel Coordination Committee (NBCC):

  • Established in 1960 under the Chairmanship of the Minister of Petroleum & Natural Gas, NBCC coordinates implements, and monitors biofuel programs.
  • Actively involved in diverse projects related to Institutional, Housing, Industrial, Environmental, Transportation, and Power sectors.


Aviation Turbine Fuel (ATF) and Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF):

  • ATF, or jet fuel, is tailored for gas-turbine engines in aircraft, consisting of a mix of hydrocarbons with varying compositions based on petroleum sources.
  • SAF, a sustainable alternative, is produced from eco-friendly feedstocks, boasting a significantly lower carbon footprint than conventional ATF.

NBC C\’s Recent Decision on SAF:

  • In response to stakeholder input, NBCC endorsed initial indicative blending targets for SAF in ATF.
  • Approved targets include a 1% SAF indicative blending goal in 2027 (initially for international flights) and a 2% SAF blending target in 2028 (initially for international flights).
  • The adoption of jet fuel blended with SAF aids airlines in adhering to emission standards.
  • India, though not partaking in the voluntary phases of CORSIA, must comply with the mandatory phase commencing in 2027. The government\’s potential rollout of support or incentives for airlines and SAF manufacturers to mitigate production costs remains uncertain.


  • The NBCC\’s decision reflects a proactive stance in the pursuit of sustainable biofuel programs, aligning with the broader vision of reducing the carbon footprint of the aviation industry. 
  • However, the uncertainty surrounding potential government support or incentives to alleviate production costs for airlines and SAF manufacturers poses a challenge. Addressing these concerns will be crucial to ensuring a seamless transition towards a more sustainable and eco-friendly aviation landscape in the years to come.


Antarctic Ozone Hole 


  • A recent study published in Nature Communications has highlighted the substantial growth of the Antarctic Ozone Hole over the last four years. This finding is in contrast to the anticipated recovery trend since the 2000s, posing challenges to global efforts outlined in the Montreal Protocol to reduce ozone-depleting substances.



  • The Antarctic Ozone Hole, a critical concern for environmental conservation, has exhibited unexpected expansion and thinning, as revealed by the study. 
  • The ozone layer, vital for shielding the Earth from harmful ultraviolet (UV) radiation, has experienced a 26% reduction in concentration at the core of the ozone hole from 2004 to 2022.


Key Findings:

  • The Antarctic ozone hole has consistently enlarged, deviating from the expected recovery trend observed since the 2000s.
  • The concentration of ozone at the centre of the hole has decreased by 26%, indicating a significant thinning of the ozone layer.
  • Despite efforts outlined in the Montreal Protocol, human-generated chemicals continue to impact the ozone layer adversely.


Polar Vortex Influence:

  • The Antarctic ozone hole is situated within the polar vortex, a circular wind pattern in the stratosphere formed during winter and sustained until late spring.
  • The intrusion of Antarctic air from the mesosphere into the stratosphere brings natural chemicals like nitrogen dioxide, impacting ozone chemistry.

Factors Affecting Ozone Depletion:

  • Meteorological conditions, including temperature, wind patterns, aerosols from wildfires and volcanic eruptions, and changes in the solar cycle, play a role in influencing the size and behaviour of the Antarctic ozone hole.



  • Further research is needed to understand the descent of air from the mesosphere and its specific impacts on ozone chemistry.
  • Investigating these mechanisms is crucial for predicting the future behaviour of the Antarctic ozone hole.


About the Ozone Hole:

  • An ozone hole signifies a severe depletion of the ozone layer in the Earth\’s stratosphere, crucial for shielding against harmful UV radiation.
  • Human-generated chemicals, particularly chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), lead to ozone layer depletion, resulting in reduced ozone concentrations, notably observed over Antarctica during the Southern Hemisphere\’s spring months.



  • The unexpected growth of the Antarctic Ozone Hole poses a challenge to global initiatives, such as the Montreal Protocol, aimed at curbing ozone-depleting substances.
  • Understanding the complex interplay of meteorological conditions contributing to ozone depletion remains a challenge for researchers.



  • The concerning findings regarding the Antarctic Ozone Hole underscore the ongoing challenges in preserving the ozone layer despite international efforts like the Montreal Protocol. 
  • As efforts continue to mitigate ozone-depleting substances, further research and a comprehensive understanding of the intricate atmospheric processes involved are crucial to addressing the unexpected thinning of the ozone layer over Antarctica. 
  • This study emphasizes the ongoing importance of global collaboration in environmental conservation to protect the Earth\’s atmosphere and mitigate the potential health and environmental risks associated with ozone depletion.




Facts for prelims: 

Kambala Buffalo Race


The renowned Kambala buffalo race, deeply rooted in tradition, is set to make its inaugural appearance in Bengaluru, Karnataka.

  • Geographical Context: Originating in Coastal Karnataka districts, particularly Udupi and Dakshina Kannada, Kambala is traditionally conducted during the winter months coinciding with the paddy crop harvest.
  • Race Dynamics: Staged on two parallel tracks filled with mud and water, each participating pair of buffaloes is accompanied by a designated jockey, referred to as a \’Kambala runner,\’ responsible for steering and commanding the animals during the race.
  • Competition Format: Winning teams progress to subsequent rounds, leading to the emergence of an ultimate champion.
  • Beyond the Race: In addition to securing victory in the race, participants aim to showcase skills in water splashing, with some winners even determined by the volume of water splashed, a unique aspect known as \’kolu.\’

As Bengaluru hosts the Kambala Buffalo Race for the first time, this traditional event not only promotes cultural heritage but also offers spectators a glimpse into the unique blend of competition and tradition that defines this age-old buffalo race.




In a recent scientific breakthrough, researchers have identified the most potent cosmic ray observed in over three decades, christened \’Amaterasu.\’

  • Amaterasu stands as one of the highest-energy cosmic rays ever recorded.
  • It derives its name from the Japanese sun goddess, emphasising its formidable energy.
  • With an energy surpassing 240 exa-electron volts (EeV), Amaterasu exceeds the energy levels produced in the Large Hadron Collider, the world\’s most potent accelerator. This energy is equivalent to that of a golf ball travelling at 95 mph.
  • While remarkable, Amaterasu ranks second to the Oh-My-God particle, an ultra-high-energy cosmic ray detected in 1991 with an energy level of 320 EeV.
  • Originating from the Local Void, a desolate expanse adjacent to the Milky Way galaxy, Amaterasu\’s journey through space captures scientific attention.

Understanding Cosmic Rays:

  • Cosmic rays represent remnants of intense celestial phenomena that have disintegrated matter into its subatomic constituents, propelling it through the cosmos at nearly the speed of light.
  • These rays consist of charged particles, including positive protons, negative electrons, or complete atomic nuclei, traversing space and incessantly reaching Earth.
  • Upon colliding with Earth\’s upper atmosphere, cosmic rays dismantle the nuclei of oxygen and nitrogen gas, generating a multitude of secondary particles.
  • These secondary particles travel a brief distance within the atmosphere, initiating a cascade effect and forming a shower of billions of secondary particles that disperse toward the Earth\’s surface.


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