ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Ecological Rift and Alienation: Field notes from Goa and Sikkim

Goa and Sikkim, two of the smallest states in India by area, are also places that have some of the richest plant and animal biodiversity, with Goa nestled between the Western Ghats and the Arabian Sea, and Sikkim being a part of the eastern Himalayas. Incidentally, their natural beauty also makes them ideal tourist destinations. Currently, Goa is about to see a resumption in mining activities, mining fields that were left abandoned for a decade will open up soon, and places like Mollem (an ecological hotspot) will be dug up in the name of “development projects” (Datta 2022). The mountains of Sikkim and North Bengal too are being dug up for the Sivok-Rangpo railway project, with plans of extending it to Gangtok at a second phase later on. In this paper, I explore the Marxist ecological tradition and the metabolic rift through primary field evidence from Goa, and parts of North Bengal and Sikkim. I present the observations from field visits to these places followed by an analysis of observations from the Marxian ecologist perspective, foregrounding the idea of ecological rift and alienation as discussed by John Bellamy Foster, Brett Clark, Richard York and Fred Magdoff.

Climate Crisis, Global Debt, and the Fermi Paradox

In a recent article, Yıldızoğlu (2021) reminded us of the Fermi Paradox, which can be summarised as: Although the probability of the existence of other forms of life in the universe is sufficiently high, why have we not met any? Enrico Fermi, the Italian–American physicist and the creator of the...

Climate Change and the Human Condition

The Climate of History in a Planetary Age by Dipesh Chakrabarty, New Delhi: Primus Books, 2021; pp 290, ` 995 (hardcover).

Green, but Not So Green

The pandemic, the climate crisis, and crisis in agriculture call for sustainable solutions, which are acknowledged by NITI Aayog, but did not find a thrust in the budget. A positive growth in agriculture during the pandemic shows its resilience, but it is intriguing that food inflation remained high and its possible link with the three farm produce laws should not be overlooked. It is worrying that crop loans for input-intensive production are non-serviceable.

Vaunting Rhetoric versus Grim Realities

While the rhetoric of collective responsibility to achieve “ambitious outcomes” in terms of climate action to address the “climate emergency” stands questioned in the 25th Conference of Parties, the grim realities of the inequalities between countries and the evasion of responsibilities and commitments by the developed countries point towards the fundamental role and continued importance of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change that remains wider in its scope and broader in its vision than the Paris Agreement. The developed countries are also seeking to manipulate the science–policy interface in an attempt to sideline the equity and climate justice-related perspectives of the developing countries.
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