Environmental pollution

India may have overtaken China in harmful sulphur dioxide emissions, finds study

China’s emissions of the pollutant fell by 75% over the past decade, while it increased by 50% in India, said scientists at Nasa and the University of Maryland.

India may have overtaken China as the world’s largest emitter of sulphur dioxide, says a study carried out by researchers at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the University of Maryland in the United States.

China’s sulphur dioxide emissions declined by 75% since 2007, while India’s emissions increased by 50%, says the Nasa study published in the journal Scientific Reports.

Sulphur dioxide, which is produced mostly when coal is burned to generate electricity, causes acid rain, smog and many health problems.

The report comes at a time when Delhi and several parts of North India is engulfed in a toxic smog. Air pollution levels have been over 30 times the World Health Organisation standards for daily exposure in Delhi and parts of its neighbouring states.

China and India are the world’s top consumers of coal, which contains up to 3% sulphur. However, the two countries are “on opposite trajectories for sulfurous pollution”. “The rapid decrease of sulphur dioxide emissions in China far exceeds expectations and projections,” said researcher Can Li. “This suggests that China is implementing sulphur dioxide controls beyond what climate modelers have taken into account.”

Although China seems to have brought sulphur dioxide emissions under control, “haze remains severe in China, indicating the importance of reducing emissions of other pollutants”, the report says. It noted that in India, approximately 33 million people now live in areas with substantial sulphur dioxide.

“Continued growth in emissions will adversely affect more people and further exacerbate morbidity and mortality,” the study concludes.

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Following a mountaineer as he reaches the summit of Mount Everest

Accounts from Vikas Dimri’s second attempt reveal the immense fortitude and strength needed to summit the Everest.

Vikas Dimri made a huge attempt last year to climb the Mount Everest. Fate had other plans. Thwarted by unfavourable weather at the last minute, he came so close and yet not close enough to say he was at the top. But that did not deter him. Vikas is back on the Everest trail now, and this time he’s sharing his experiences at every leg of the journey.

The Everest journey began from the Lukla airport, known for its dicey landing conditions. It reminded him of the failed expedition, but he still moved on to Namche Bazaar - the staging point for Everest expeditions - with a positive mind. Vikas let the wisdom of the mountains guide him as he battled doubt and memories of the previous expedition. In his words, the Everest taught him that, “To conquer our personal Everest, we need to drop all our unnecessary baggage, be it physical or mental or even emotional”.

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Back in the Himalayas, after a string of sleepless nights, Vikas and his team ascended to Camp 2 (6,500m) as planned, and then descended to Base Camp for the basic luxuries - hot shower, hot lunch and essential supplements. Back up at Camp 2, the weather played spoiler again as a jet stream - a fast-flowing, narrow air current - moved right over the mountain. Wisdom from the mountains helped Vikas maintain perspective as they were required to descend 15km to Pheriche Valley. He accepted that “strength lies not merely in chasing the big dream, but also in...accepting that things could go wrong.”

At Camp 4 (8,000m), famously known as the death zone, Vikas caught a clear glimpse of the summit – his dream standing rather tall in front of him.

It was the 18th of May 2018 and Vikas finally reached the top. The top of his Everest…the top of Mount Everest!

Watch the video below to see actual moments from Vikas’ climb.

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Vikas credits his strength to dedication, exercise and a healthy diet. He credits dietary supplements for helping him sustain himself in the inhuman conditions on Mount Everest. On heights like these where the oxygen supply drops to 1/3rd the levels on the ground, the body requires 3 times the regular blood volume to pump the requisite amount of oxygen. He, thus, doesn’t embark on an expedition without double checking his supplements and uses Livogen as an aid to maintain adequate amounts of iron in his blood.

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This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Livogen and not by the Scroll editorial team.