Daily Prelims Newsletter for upsc 11 May 2022

Daily Prelims Newsletter For UPSC
| RaghukulCS

11 May 2022-Wednesday

Table Of Contents

Table of Contents

W Boson

Why is this news worthy?

Researchers from the Collider Detector at Fermilab (CDF) Collaboration in the United States recently revealed that they had precisely measured the mass of the W boson.

This precisely established number did not match the estimates from the mainstream model of particle physics, according to the researchers.

What exactly is W Boson?

The W boson was discovered at CERN, on the Franco-Swiss border, in 1983.

The W bosons are relatively hefty, in contrast to the photon, which is massless, hence the weak force they mediate is quite short ranged.

CERN is the world’s biggest nuclear and particle physics laboratory, and is best known as the operator of the Large Hadron Collider, which discovered the elusive Higgs boson in 2012.

The W-plus and W-minus are both heavy and charged, unlike the photon, which is electrically neutral.

A neutron can transform into a proton, for example, by exchanging such W bosons: this is what happens in beta decay, a radioactive interaction that occurs in the sun.

As a result, the W boson aids interactions that cause the sun to burn and produce energy.

What is Elementary Particle Physics’ Standard Model?

The standard model of elementary particles is a physics theoretical construct that models the interaction of matter particles.

It shows how mathematical symmetry connects the world’s constituent particles, much as bilateral (left-right) symmetry connects two objects.

These are mathematical groups that are formed by continuous transformations from one particle to another, for example.

There are a finite number of fundamental particles in this paradigm, which are represented by the distinctive “eigen” states of these groups.

Experiments have confirmed the existence of particles anticipated by the model, such as the Z boson.

The Higgs boson, which gives mass to massive particles, was discovered last in 2012.

Why is it thought that the Standard Model is incomplete?

It completely ignores gravity because it combines just three of the four fundamental forces of existence — electromagnetic, weak nuclear, strong nuclear, and gravitational interactions.

As a result, the standard model was determined to be inadequate in the larger scheme of unifying all forces such that a single equation could describe all matter interactions.

Furthermore, it lacks a description of dark matter particles.

So far, only their gravitational pull on the surrounding matter has been discovered.

What is the relationship between symmetries and particles?

Because they are created by “gauge transformations,” the symmetries of the standard model are known as gauge symmetries.

A set of continuous transformations is known as gauge transformations (like rotation is a continuous transformation). A gauge boson is connected with each symmetry.

The photon, for example, is a gauge boson involved with electromagnetic interactions. The W and Z gauge bosons are related with weak interactions. W+ and W- are the two types of W bosons.

Intermediaries in Digital News Regulation

Why is this newsworthy?

Canada recently introduced legislation that would require Internet companies like Google and Facebook to compensate news publishers for the use of their content.

What is the central concept?

The bill aims to regulate digital news intermediaries in order to “improve fairness and contribute to the long-term viability of the Canadian digital news sector.”

  • Four results are envisaged as a result of the Act.
  • A framework that promotes ethical business practises between digital platforms and journalistic organisations.
  • The news ecosystem’s long-term viability.
  • Press freedom must be preserved.
  • The news environment is diverse.

What are the characteristics of publisher-platform partnerships?

Use of Tools and Tactics: Until recently, their connection was mostly focused on how publishers might use tools and strategies to maximise the reach of these platforms.

Many conventional news companies rely heavily on Google and Facebook for traffic.

Making Money:

Platforms make a lot of money from this arrangement all around the world, but publishers suffer.

Publishers must also deal with frequent modifications to the platform algorithm, which poses the genuine risk of losing a huge number of readers all at once.

What significance does such legislation have for India?

About: The Canadian decision on the matter is likely to improve India’s news publishers’ chances of obtaining a fair revenue-sharing structure.

In December 2021, the ndia stated that it has no plans to force tech behemoths like Facebook and Google to compensate local publishers for news content.

The Competition Commission of India, however, initiated inquiries into Google earlier in 2022 after a complaint from the Digital News Publishers’ Association (DNPA).

The watchdog did take account of the laws in Australia and France while drafting the order.

Regulation is Required:

With nearly 800 million people online, India, previously the world’s largest unconnected country, will soon be one of the world’s largest internet-enabled nations.

Technology will almost certainly play a significant role in our economy, accounting for over a fifth of our total output.

Unregulated social and digital media may jeopardise India’s emergence as a trustworthy and responsible nation, as well as the world’s largest democracy.

These problems can be solved by effectively regulating social media and upgrading our laws and institutions.

What does the situation look like in other countries?

Google and Facebook are fighting in court about remuneration for using news content all around the world.

Regulators and publishers are suing them for antitrust violations.

With news publishers in Australia, the United Kingdom, the European Union, and France enacting or proposing to pass legislation to ensure a fair revenue-sharing model, the internet behemoths appear to be fighting tooth and nail to maintain their alleged monopolistic system and reap massive profits.

Conference of Parties to the UNCCD (COP15)

Why is this newsworthy?

The Union Minister for Environment, Forests and Climate Change recently spoke at the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCDfifteenth )’s Conference of the Parties (COP15) in Cote d’Ivoire (Western Africa).

What are the COP15’s Highlights?


The United Nations Conference on Climate Change (COP 15) represents a watershed event in the fight against desertification, land degradation, and drought.

It will build on the findings of the Global Land Outlook’s second edition to provide a practical response to the interconnected concerns of land degradation, climate change, and biodiversity loss.

The UNCCD’s flagship publication, the Global Land Outlook (GLO), highlights land system concerns, highlights transformative policies and practises, and identifies cost-effective approaches to scale up sustainable land and water management.

Drought, land restoration, and associated enablers including land rights, gender equality, and youth empowerment are among the conference’s major priorities.

‘Land. Life. Legacy: From Scarcity to Prosperity’ is the theme.

What is the definition of desertification?

Land degradation is defined as the loss or decline of dryland biological or economic productivity.

Land degradation occurs in arid, semiarid, and dry subhumid areas as a result of a variety of factors, including climatic changes and human activity.


Soil Cover Depletion:

One of the main causes of desertification is the loss of soil cover, which is mostly caused by rainfall and surface runoff.

Cutting down trees has a negative impact on the soil and causes degradation. As the population of cities grows, so does the demand for resources.

“The temporary or permanent loss in the density, structure, species composition, or productivity of plant cover,” according to Vegetation Degradation.

Badland Topography is the outcome of water erosion, which is the first stage of desertification.

Badlands are dry areas with softer sedimentary rocks and clay-rich soils that have been heavily eroded.

Sand encroachment by the wind diminishes soil fertility, making the region vulnerable to desertification.

It was discovered to be responsible for 5.46 percent of India’s desertification.

Climate change may increase desertification by altering temperature, rainfall, solar radiation, and wind patterns in space and time.

What efforts have been made in this area?

Global Initiatives:

UNCCD stands for the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification. It is the only legally enforceable international agreement combining environment and development to sustainable land management, having been formed in 1994.

The UNCCD’s 14th CoP issued the Delhi Declaration in 2019, which urged for improved land access and stewardship, as well as gender-sensitive transformative projects.

The Bonn Challenge: By 2020, restore 150 million hectares of deforested and damaged land around the world, and 350 million hectares by 2030.

The Great Green Wall is a GEF initiative in which eleven countries in Sahel-Saharan Africa have pooled their resources to combat soil degradation and restore native plant life to the region.

India’s Land Degradation Initiatives:

India is working on sustainable land and resource management for community livelihood generation in order to make local lands healthier and more productive in order to provide a better homeland and a better future for its people.

In 2001, the National Action Plan for Combating Desertification was created in order to take proper action in tackling desertification issues.

India adopted six restoration flagships that aim to restore 12.5 million hectares of degraded land in response to a global call for nominations for World Restoration Flagships.

The following are some of the major programmes currently being done to address concerns connected to land degradation and desertification:

  • National Afforestation Programme (Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana) Integrated Watershed Management Programme (IWMP) (NAP)
  • Green India National Mission (GIM)
  • Soil Conservation in the Catchment of River Valley Project National Watershed Development Project for Rainfed Areas, Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NWDPRA)
  • Fodder and Feed Development Scheme, which includes Grass Reserves, is a component of Grassland Development.
  • Soil Health Card Scheme, Command Area Development and Water Management (CADWM) initiative, and so forth.

Other’s News

2022 State of the World's Forests

During the World Forestry Congress, the 2022 edition of the State of the World’s Forests (SOFO) was released.

According to the SOFO report, deforestation has resulted in the loss of 420 million hectares (mha) of forest during the last 30 years (1990-2020).

This represents about 10.34% of the total forest area of 4.06 billion ha (31% of the earth’s geographical area).

It went on to say that, despite the fact that deforestation was decreasing, 10 million hectares of forest were lost every year between 2015 and 2020.

More than 700 million hectares of forest (18 percent of total forest area) are protected by law.

Deforestation and forest degradation, however, continue to threaten forest biodiversity.

Between 2016 and 2050, an estimated 289 million hectares of forest would be deforested in the tropics alone, resulting in the emission of 169 GtCO2e.

The report also outlined three approaches to achieving green recovery and addressing environmental challenges such as climate change and biodiversity loss:

  • Stopping deforestation and preserving the environment
  • Land restoration and agroforestry expansion
  • Using forests sustainably and creating green value chains
  • According to Diseases – SOFO 2022, woods are associated to 15% of 250 new infectious diseases.

It went on to say that deforestation and land-use change are to blame for 30% of new diseases reported since 1960.

Deforestation has been linked to a rise in infectious diseases including dengue fever and malaria, particularly in the tropics.

  • To address the “underlying determinants of disease onset,” SOFO 2022 recommended improved and more responsible land-use planning.
  • COVID-19 resulted in an additional 124 million people falling into extreme poverty.
  • This could have long-term implications for wood-based fuels, as evidence of increasing wood-based fuel consumption during the epidemic has been found in some nations.
  • According to Population – SOFO 2022, the global population is expected to reach 9.7 billion people by 2050.
  • The need for food for this big population would expand by 35 to 56 percent by the 2050s, increasing competition for land.
  • Due to population growth and prosperity, annual worldwide consumption of all natural resources is anticipated to more than double from 92 billion tonnes in 2017 to 190 billion tonnes in 2060.
  • It went on to say that by 2060, annual biomass extraction would have increased to 44 billion tonnes, up from 24 billion tonnes in 2017.
  • Construction and packaging are likely to drive demand for forest-based biomass even higher.
  • According to projections, between 2020 and 2050, restoring degraded land by afforestation and reforestation could cost-effectively remove 0.9 to 1.5 GtCO2e per year from the atmosphere.
  • Through the Glasgow Leaders’ Declaration on Forests and Land Use, more than 140 countries have promised to end forest loss by 2030 and to support forest restoration and sustainable forestry.
  • An additional $19 billion has been set aside to assist poor countries in achieving these goals.


  • Every year on May 7th, World Thalassemia Day is commemorated to raise awareness about the disease and to honour those who suffer from it.
  • Thalassemia is an inherited blood illness in which the body does not produce enough haemoglobin, a protein found in red blood cells (RBCs).
  • RBCs provide oxygen to all of the body’s cells thanks to haemoglobin.
  • Thalassemia can induce anaemia, which might make you tired.
  • Thalassemia is a condition in which there is insufficient haemoglobin.
  • Anemia occurs when there aren’t enough healthy RBCs.
  • Because the body’s RBCs don’t function properly and endure for shorter lengths of time when there isn’t enough haemoglobin, there are fewer healthy red blood cells flowing through the bloodstream.
  • When there aren’t enough healthy RBCs, oxygen isn’t supplied to all of the body’s other cells, which can make a person feel weary, weak, or short of breath.
  • Anemia can be minor or severe in people with thalassemia.
  • Severe anaemia can cause organ damage and even death.
  • Thalassemia is caused by abnormalities in the DNA of cells that produce haemoglobin, the component in red blood cells that transports oxygen throughout the body.
  • The thalassemia mutations are handed down from parents to offspring.
  • Hemoglobin molecules are made up of alpha and beta chains, which are susceptible to mutations.
  • The production of either the alpha or beta chains is diminished in thalassemia, resulting in alpha- or beta-thalassemia.
  • The severity of alpha-thalassemia is determined by the amount of gene mutations you receive from your parents. The more mutated genes you have, the worse your thalassemia will be.
  • The severity of beta-thalassemia is determined by the section of the haemoglobin molecule that is damaged.
Factors that enhance your risk of developing thalassemia include:
  • Thalassemia runs in the family. Thalassemia is handed down down the generations due to faulty haemoglobin genes.
  • A certain lineage. Thalassemia is most common in African Americans, as well as Mediterranean and Southeast Asian individuals.
  • Iron excess, infection, bone deformities, enlarged spleen, reduced development rates, and cardiac difficulties are all possible effects of mild to severe thalassemia.
  • Thalassemia cannot be prevented in the majority of cases.
  • If you have thalassemia or carry the thalassemia gene, you should consult a genetic counsellor for advice before starting a family.
  • There is a type of assisted reproductive technology diagnosis that uses in vitro fertilisation to check an embryo for genetic abnormalities in its early stages.
  • This could aid parents with thalassemia or bearers of a faulty haemoglobin gene in having healthy children.
  • The method entails collecting mature eggs and fertilising them in a laboratory dish with sperm.
  • Only embryos with no genetic flaws are placed into the uterus after being checked for defective genes.
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