Mint Lite | Delhi temperature, covid vaccine, Sentinel 6, Pompeii ruins & others4 min read . Updated: 22 Nov 2020, 09:30 PM IST
Stories, opinions, news and views that matter, from around the world.
Delhi’s temperature dropped to 6.9’ celsius at the Safdarjung observatory on Sunday morning. The previous record for coldest November was in 2006 at 7.3’c, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) record showed. The Capital is likely to have a colder winter than usual this year, according to IMD scientists. This is because of La Nina--where temperatures in the central Pacific Ocean drops below normal levels, triggering wind patterns even in far off regions. Local factors such as a cloudless sky has also helped keep temperatures low. For more updates, here's Mint Lite
Vaccine and debt relief
Vaccine nationalism, where rich nations seek to secure enough doses for their own citizens before they can be made available to others, has often been flagged as a phenomenon that can weaken the battle against the covid-19 pandemic. Some of those worries should recede now, after leaders of the world’s 20 biggest economies pledged to ensure a fair distribution of covid vaccines, drugs and tests around the world. They also vowed to do what was needed to support poorer nations struggling to recover from the pandemic, Reuters reported. World Bank President David Malpass called upon G20 leaders to provide debt relief to some of the poorest countries, warning that failure to do so would lead to increased poverty and disorderly defaults. Malpass, who has been pushing for debt relief since the pandemic struck, warned that debt challenges were becoming more frequent, including in Chad, Angola, Ethiopia and Zambia.
Sentinel 6 to map world oceans
California launched the Sentinel 6 –a satellite aimed at measuring the shape of the world's oceans, reports BBC. Data from the Sentinel will track not only sea-level rise but reveal how the great mass of waters is moving around the globe, becoming what scientists hope a dependable way to understand climate change. The 1.3-tonne satellite was taken aloft from the Vandenberg base on a SpaceX Falcon-9 rocket. While the Sentinel may resemble a dog kennel, it is actually a sophisticated satellite made through a joint endeavour between Europe and the US. It will continue the measurements that have been made by a succession of spacecraft, called the Jason-Topex/Poseidon series. The United Nations–led Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) had last year revealed in a report that if countries manage to lower its carbon pollution in the next few decades, then sea-level rise by 2100 may never exceed about one foot.
Burkina Faso goes to polls
Burkina Faso went to the polls on Sunday for a presidential and legislative election in the midst of ongoing extremist violence in the landlocked West African nation. The elections are more than just about choosing a president for the young democracy though. A failure to hold a peaceful, transparent election in this African nation of 21 million people could give extremist groups who accuse the government of being ineffective a boost, experts say. But violence has cut off large swaths of the country, leaving people unable to register or cast ballots. President Roch Marc Christian Kabore is fighting against 12 other candidates and is likely to win. But the opposition hopes to split the vote, depriving him of the 51% support needed for an outright victory.
Pompeii ruins reveal dark death
Skeletal remains of what are believed to have been a rich man and his male slave attempting to escape death from the eruption of Mount Vesuvius nearly 2,000 years ago have been discovered in Pompeii, Italy, Associated Press reported. Parts of the skulls and bones of the two men were found during excavation of the ruins from what was once an elegant villa with a panoramic view of the Mediterranean Sea on the outskirts of the ancient Roman city destroyed by the volcano eruption in 79 A.D. Pompeii officials said the remains of the two victims, lying next to each other on their backs, were found in a layer of gray ash at least 2 meters deep. Judging by cranial bones and teeth, one of the men was young, likely aged 18-25, with a spinal column with compressed discs. He probably did manual labor, like a slave. The other man, estimated to have been 30-40 years of age, had a robust bone structure, especially in his chest area.
Vulture conservation efforts in Madhya Pradesh
India’s vulture count has been dwindling for long. Now, in an effort to revive the population of these scavengers, Madhya Pradesh forest department is considering to develop an artificial incubation facility for vultures at a conservation centre. As per the bird count done in Madhya Pradesh in 2019, the state had 8,397 vultures, the highest among other states in India, Bhopal-based Van Vihar National Park's deputy director A K Jain told PTI. He hopes that the planned facility will increase the survival rate of these birds to 50 to 60%. Vulture population went through a sudden slump in the last two decades. However, their role in the ecological chain is vital as they eat dead animals. In 2013, the Bombay Natural History Society and the MP government came together to establish a vulture conservation and breeding centre in Kerwa, Madhya Pradesh.
Curated by Sohini Sen. Have something to share with us? Write to us at feedback@livemint or tweet to @shohinisen