The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation recently launched the joint military exercises in Albania called the “DEFENDER-Europe 21”. Thousands of military forces from the US are participating in the exercise.
The exercise is an annual US-led multinational exercise.
It is defensive in nature.
It focuses on deterring aggression.
DEFENDER Europe 21
In 2021, the exercise is to focus on building operational readiness and interoperability.
More than 28,000 troops of the US and its allies are participating.
More than 26 countries are to conduct simultaneous operations in more than thirty training areas from Black sea, Balkan regions to Baltics and Africa.
The USNS Bob Hope is to demonstrate unloading heavy equipment onto the smaller vessels.
NATO is North Atlantic Treaty Organisation. It is an intergovernmental military alliance between thirty North American and European countries.
In 1947, France and UK signed the “Treaty of Dunkirk” (This was the inception of NATO). It was a military alliance between the countries. It was signed in the event of possible attack by Germany or Soviet Union in the post-World War II conditions. The US, Canada, Italy, Denmark, Norway, Portugal and Iceland joined the treaty in 1949.
The first NATO military exercise was held in 1952.
Soviet Union signed the Warsaw pact to counter NATO.
The Warsaw Pact was signed after the integration of West Germany into the NATO. It was signed in 1955. It was signed in Warsaw, Poland. It was signed between the Soviet Union and the seven other countries in the central and eastern Europe. There were no military dealings between them like that of NATO. However, conflicts were fought on ideological basis and also in proxy wars. The largest military engagement of Warsaw pact was the invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968. Albania and Romania did not participate in the invasion. Later Albania withdrew from the pact. (Albania joined NATO in 2009).
The other countries of Warsaw Pact that participated in the invasion were Poland, Soviet Union, Hungary, East Germany and Bulgaria.
The Reserve Bank of India recently joined the Network for Greening the Financial System (NGFS). By joining the system, RBI is to learn from and contribute to the Global Climate risk management in the financial sector. Ultimately, the apex bank will work with its global partners to support the transition towards a sustainable economy.
Greening the Financial System
There are 83 central banks associated with the system. Of these 75 are members and 13 are observers.
The main objective of the system is to increase and accelerate green finance.
It was announced during the One Planet Summit held at Paris in 2017.
The initiative was launched by eight central banks under the leadership of Banque de France.
It aims to help the members design policies and climate risk resilience in financial sector.
Current Functions of NGFS
The NGFS is currently working under the following:
Microprudential or Supervision: Done by Singapore
Macrofinacial works: By Bank of England
Scaling up the Green Finance: by Deutsche Bundesbank (Germany)
Bridging the data gaps: International Monetary Fund
According to the Global Risks Report, 2021 of the World Economic Forum, the infectious diseases and climate action failure are considered as the highest risks.
According to World Economic Forum, around 5 trillion USD is needed to be invested annually in green infrastructure. Currently the world is investing only 100 billion USD annually.
According to World Bank, the loses to GDP of India due to Climate Change will be 1,178 billion USD by 2050.
Saudi Arabia recently announced that it is to join Canada, US, Qatar and Norway in forming the Net Zero Producers Forum.
Net Zero Producers Forum
The forum has been formed for the oil and gas producers to discuss how to support the implementation of Paris Agreement on Climate Change.
It aims to develop pragmatic net zero emission strategies.
It will aim at Methane abatement.
Also, it will target in advancing the circular carbon economy approach.
It will promote development and deployment of clean energy.
It will support the development of carbon capture and storage technologies.
Above all, it will march towards diversifying from reliance on hydrocarbon revenues.
What are the targets of the countries?
The United States has set a target of cutting emission levels by 50% to 52% as compared to that of 2005 levels. This was announced during the Leaders Summit on Climate held in April 2021.
Saudi Arabia is to reduce its carbon emissions by generating 50% of its energy requirements from renewable sourced by 2030. It is to be noted that Saudi Arabia is the world’s biggest crude oil exporter.
Canada has set a target of reducing its green house gas emissions by 30% as compared to that of 2005 levels.
Climate Targets of Norway
Norway has signed an agreement with the European Union under the EU Climate Legislation. The agreement has three pieces of legislation. They are as follows:
EU Emissions Trading System
Effort Sharing Regulation for non-ETS Emissions
Land-use, Land-use change and forestry regulation
The European Union has set a target to reduce the green house gases by 55% as compared to that of 1990 levels. Norway is not a member of European Union. However, it is associated with the grouping through its membership of European Economic Area.
The Japanese Government recently awarded the “Order of Rising Sun” to a Bengaluru based Japanese teacher, Shyamala Ganesh.
About Shyamala Ganesh
Shyamala is a Japanese teacher at the Septuagenarian institution and also at the Ohara School of Ikebana in RT Nagar, Bengaluru. She has tutored more than hundreds of students since its inception 38 years ago. Ikebana is Japanese art of flower arrangement.
Shyamala along with her husband Ganesh started a Japanese language school in 1983 in Bengaluru.
Order of Rising Sun
The award is presented by the Emperor of Japan.
It was created in 1875.
The award is presented to those who have made distinguished achievements in promotion of Japanese culture, achievements in international relations, advancements in their field and conservation of environment.
It was also awarded for exemplary military service before World War II.
It is the third highest award presented by the Japanese Government.
The culture of presenting the award to Non-Japanese recipients began in 1981.
Women are presented with the award since 2003.
The award can also be presented posthumously.
Other highest Japanese awards
The highest Japanese award is the Order of Chrysanthemum. The award is reserved only for the heads of the state.
The Order of Paulownia flowers is mostly reserved for politicians.
Order of Chrysanthemum
It was established in 1876 by Emperor Meji of Japan.
It can be conferred posthumously unlike its European counterparts.
Order of Paulownia Flowers
It was established in 1888.
It was once conferred to the former Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
It is the second highest award presented by the Japanese Government.
Month: Current Affairs - April, 2021
Category: Awards, Persons & Places in News • International Current Affairs
Topics: Dr Manmohan Singh • Japan • Japanese • Shyamala Ganesh