General issues on
Environmental & Global Issues

Environment and biodiversity are integral topics in the USPC exam. Most IAS aspirants worry about these topics as they are not as ‘concrete’ as other topics like History or Indian Economy. The study material is not as ‘time-tested’ as in other subjects. Also, there is a very high correlation to current affairs in these sections. So, you have to be very alert to any relevant news. Additionally, these topics are constantly in the news these days due to concerns about environment, climate change, etc. assuming more priority with governments and world bodies.


    • Biodiversity – importance for human survival, International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, biodiversity hot spots, Red Data Book.
    • General topics from environmental ecology – terms such as ecotone, ecosystems, effects of environmental degradation, food chain, etc.
    • Pollution – acid rain, smog, greenhouse gases, algal bloom, ozone layer.
    • Sustainable Development – renewable energy sources, bio-fertilizers, bio-pesticides, biomass gasification.
    • Conservation – conservation of natural resources, wildlife conservation, national parks, wetlands, biosphere reserves.
    • Climate change – Kyoto Protocol, Montreal Protocol, climate change summits held.
    • Ecologically sensitive areas – Western Ghats, Himalayas.
    • Laws, regulatory bodies and policies at national and international level – Laws, regulatory bodies and policies at national and international level
    • UNEP, FAO, UNESCO, etc.
    • Ramsar Convention, Montreux Record, the three Rio Conventions – Convention on Biological Diversity (CoB), United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification – from the 1992 Earth Summit, etc.
    • Carbon trading and leakage issues, Kyoto mechanism, emission trading, etc.
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