Study Material for UPSC IAS, Civil Services and State PCS Examinations - Environment (National Parks/Grasslands/Sanctuaries in News)

Study Material for UPSC IAS, Civil Services and State PCS Examinations - Environment (National Parks/Grasslands/Sanctuaries in News)


Why in news?

  • Nomadic tribes (Maldhari) are leaving their villages in Banni region due to water scarcity.
  • The Banni grassland of Gujarat (near Rann of Kutch) is the largest natural grassland in the Indian subcontinent known for its scarce rainfall and semi-drought conditions.

Chhari Dhand

  • ‘Chhari’ means salt affected and ‘dhand’ means shallow wetland. •Chhari-Dhand is a legally protected wetland conservation reserve.
  • The Banni Grasslands and Chhari-Dhand form one of the most important bird areas in the desert ecosystems of India.


Why in news?

  • The Kaziranga National Park (KNP) had been split into two divisions —the existing Eastern Assam Wildlife and the new Biswanath Wildlife park with Brahmputra flowing in between.

About the Kaziranga National Park

  • Kaziranga protected area was established in 1904 and is located on the edge of the Eastern Himalayan biodiversity hotspot.
  • It is a UNESCO world heritage site.
  • The park is home to large breeding populations of elephants, wild water buffalo, and swamp deer other than the one-horned rhino.


Why in news?

  • Recently, Khangchendzonga Biosphere Reserve was included in the UNESCO’s World Network of Biosphere Reserve (WNBR) under the Man and Biosphere Programme (MAB).


  • Launched in 1971, it is an Intergovernmental Scientific Programme that aims to establish a scientific basis for the improvement of relationships between people and their environments.
  • It covers internationally designated protected areas, each known as biosphere reserves, that are meant to demonstrate a balanced relationship between people and nature.
  • Now the total number of Biosphere reserves under MAB programme has reached to 686. India has 18 biospheres reserves, of which 11 have been included in the WNBR.
  • It combines the natural and social sciences, economics and education to improve human livelihoods and the equitable sharing of benefits, and to safeguard natural and managed ecosystems.
  • The Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve was the first reserve from the country to be included in the WNBR.

Others MAB -WNVR site in India

  • Gulf of Mannar-Tamil Nadu
  • Sundarban-West Bangal
  • Nanda Devi- Uttrakhand
  • Nokrek - Meghalaya
  • Pachmarchi - Madhya Pradesh
  • Simlipal - Orisa
  • Achanakmar - Amarkantak - Madhya Pradesh
  • Great- Nicobar- Andaman and Nicobar Island
  • Agasthyamala - (Western Ghat) Kerala & Tamilnadu

Khangchendzonga Biosphere Reserve

  • It is one of the highest ecosystems in the world and located at tri junction of India (Sikkim), bordering Nepal to the west and Tibet (China) to the north-west.
  • The Khangchendzonga National Park (KNP), which comprises the core area of the KBR, was inscribed as India’s first ‘Mixed World Heritage Site’in 2016.

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