Smug elitists think they have a corner on truth and should tell the rest of us how to behave. They’ve given us the tools to push back.News Editorial by David CoppedgeThe new ‘science’ of nudging has an elitist stink about it. Nudgers think they know what is best for us, and they are going to manipulate us to behave based on alleged ‘scientific’ evidence of what makes people change. Admittedly, a gentle nudge is far better than torture, but who gives nudgers the right to go around the normal channels of reason and persuasion and treat their fellow human beings like Pavlov’s dogs? Who gives them the right to operate other people like marionettes? Are they not people themselves? How would they react to being nudged? Sniff the elitism of Science Daily’s article, “Behavioral ‘nudges’ offer a cost-effective policy tool.”Governments around the world have increasingly turned to behavioral science to help address various policy problems — new research shows that some of the best-known strategies derived from behavioral science, commonly referred to as ‘nudges,’ may be extremely cost effective. The new study, which examined the cost-effectiveness of nudges and typical intervention strategies like financial incentives side-by-side, found that nudges often yield particularly high returns at a low cost when it comes to boosting retirement savings, college enrollment, energy conservation, and vaccination rates.I note several things here. First of all, they’re talking about government. They’re talking about policy, which is typically enforced by the strong arm of government bureaucrats. And they are concerned only with results that save them money. They think nudging as a strategy is justified by “behavioral science”. And worst of all, they determine what the desired results are. For a democratic society, this is scary.In all fairness, I can think of a number of situations where nudging would be admirable. Parents, for instance, might learn from pastors and doctors about the best ways to handle an autistic child with gentle words instead of frustrated outbursts. Therapists could help smokers or addicts who want to kick the habit with gentle reminders by phone or visits. Some patients afflicted with mental illness need nudging reminders to take their medicine. Caregivers of the elderly suffering from dementia often learn the value of distraction when a patient engages in risky behavior, such as walking out the door and down the street, where they could hurt themselves. Pastors often encourage accountability programs by linking counselors to parishioners who find themselves unable to control their sexual urges, are addicted to pornography, or get into episodes of anger or depression. Individuals might even nudge themselves out of bad habits with techniques like sublimation or meditation.That’s not what the ‘behavioral science’ of nudging is about. It’s about government coercion. It’s about policy. And it reeks of elitism.To see why, replace the policy cases listed above (boosting retirement savings, college enrollment, energy conservation, vaccination rates), which most citizens would find fairly innocuous, with some disturbing ones: nudging people out of certain worldviews the government finds offensive. Nudging people out of their beliefs about traditional marriage. Nudging citizens to hand over their guns. Nudging people to stop questioning evolution. Nudging people to turn in neighbors who don’t believe in man-caused global warming. In the hands of uncontrolled power, nudging could be a subversive resurrection of psychopolitics.the ‘behavioral science’ of nudging is about government coercion. It’s about policy. And it reeks of elitism.Do the authors of this article recognize the danger? “The findings are published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.” There’s a big red flag. These are the same people who publish ‘findings’ that cannot be replicated (9/05/15). These are the same pseudoscientists who cannot justify their relationship with the noble word science (5/18/12, 5/22/14) and sometimes abuse their patients (3/20/14). Even psychiatrists, who have medical degrees, face serious questions about their scientific legitimacy (5/10/13).Nowhere in this article do the nudge advocates even think about the dangers of government manipulation. Nowhere do they worry about the legitimacy of the claims of “behavioral science.” Their focus is entirely on cost savings of nudging as a strategy for compliance. It sounds so nice. Who wouldn’t want a gentle nudge instead of a fine?The researchers acknowledge that their analyses do not offer an exhaustive review of the comparative effectiveness of nudges and traditional policy tools. And there are many cases in which traditional tools — such as prohibitions and mandates — are essential for achieving specific policy objectives, and nudges might not be of value.But the new findings clearly show that nudge-type strategies based in behavioral science do offer a useful, low-cost approach to promoting behaviors tied to a variety of important outcomes.Whoa! When you see that word useful, you need to ask, “useful to whom?” Smell the elitism there? The policy makers know the outcomes they want. And the psychologists can give them a false air of scientific legitimacy to achieve their policy objectives with the least amount of money (taxpayer money, that is). If nudging doesn’t work, they can always fall back on torture: “prohibitions and mandates.”The road to hell, we know, is paved with good intentions. Most examples of nudging are non-controversial. Like the wise parent or counselor, we want to help those under our care do the right thing, with tough love and gentleness. But don’t ever assume that of a politician or a scientist! Ronald Reagan famously said, “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are, ‘I’m from the government, and I’m here to help’.”So I have a suggestion. Since they have revealed their toolkit, let’s use it. Let’s nudge them back. After all, nudging is behavioral science, is it not? Science belongs to everyone. As free-thinking, rational citizens under a social contract for the common good, we have every right to return the favor. Try this one: tweet your representatives, and nudge them to fire the psychologists. Nudge the pseudoscientific nudgers to get a real job, like truck driving. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander. Then nudge your representatives to return to Constitutional strategies, like reasoned debate, instead of manipulative tricks of pop psychology.Nudging Elitists Out of Their Yoda ComplexWe can also help cure elitists out of their Yoda complex (a mental disorder that makes them feel superior and immune to the consequences of their own self-refuting worldviews). The method is simple; ask some nudging questions. Here are some examples of how to do it.1. Neil deGrasse Tyson, a well-spoken and popular astronomer, is prone to overstatement about evolutionary ‘science.’ A popular talking head for the mainstream media, he expresses some of his philosophy in an interview on BBC News, stating that “objective truth is the ‘only hope’ for democracy.” It sounds like a statement that Tony Perkins, Eric Metaxas or Frank Turek would make, except that Tyson equates objective truth to climate change, evolution and being anti-Trump. In a string of attractively-stated half-truths, bandwagon and association arguments, Tyson equates scientism with – if not the only way to find truth – the best way to find objective truth (see Best-in-Field Fallacy). And like his friend Bill Nye, Tyson assumes that democracy will collapse unless citizens become atheistic evolutionary leftists like himself. His barometer of crisis is the number of people who believe God created the universe in six days, which he equates to flat-earthers (wrong; see “Flat Earthers Are Evolutionists”, 6/01/17). To help cure Dr Tyson of severe Yoda delusions, let’s nudge him off his pedestal back onto the ground where his fellow evolved creatures stand, with a few gentle questions.Dr. Tyson, we’re glad to hear that you believe in objective truth. Assuming you are a materialist, is it objectively true that your mind is an illusion? Does objectivity evolve like everything else in the universe? If so, how do you know that what is objectively true today will not be false tomorrow? If not, how did objectivity obtain its privileged status in a material universe as something timeless and universal?If natural selection made religion, why are you opposed to it? Wasn’t it selected for fitness somehow? Are you opposed to survival of the fittest? If you were the only person on the planet left who did not believe in God, would you remain an atheist?How did an evolved ape brain, through an unguided process, apprehend reason and morality, in a non-question-begging way? Are you familiar with Darwin’s “horrid doubt” that the convictions of his mind were in any way trustworthy? How would you answer his doubt? (Note: consensus does not qualify as an answer, since in the history of science, many times the consensus was wrong and the lone maverick was right.)Are the particles that emerged from the big bang necessary and sufficient to account for the emergence of consciousness and subjective experience, or would you, as Dr Thomas Nagel has attempted, seek to identify some unknown fundamental reality that necessarily gives rise to conscious beings that can comprehend the meaning of truth? Have you found it yet? What do you call it? Can you show it to us? 2. The Editors of Nature write, “Keep Shouting to Save Science” – which, being interpreted means, Keep shouting to save scientism, or Keep shouting to save our government funding. In the article, they once again express their political opposition to Donald Trump and to Brexit. Let’s ask them some nudging questions.Good day, Editors. Nice sentiments there. Say, could we ask you a question? Is science the same thing as the scientific establishment?Since Trump and Brexit won, are you cooperators or cheaters now, speaking in evolutionary terms?If evolution produced a majority of cooperators, why are you seeking to undermine them? Please answer in terms of population genetics, not in terms of right and wrong.If a religious or conservative majority produced more offspring, would you honor them as the fittest?3. John Baird is worried about overpopulation, and advocates ‘nudging’ people to have less children, and if that fails, imposing a modified one-child policy like China’s to avert catastrophe. In his piece on The Conversation, he bases his reasoning on Richard Dawkins’ “selfish gene” concept and on kin selection – two interpretations of evolution that are not without critics (see 4/09/17). For a taste of his argument, consider his ending sentences:To help win hearts and minds for such a change, we may be able to draw on a technique called “nudge” – as described in the 2008 book of the same name by American academics Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein. Nudging essentially persuades people to adopt behaviours that are better for either them or society as a whole. It has been shown to work on many people without them being conscious of it.But first, it needs to become more widely recognised that we are at war with our own biological constraints. In the decades to come, it is just possible that we will be able to create a new civilisation somewhere else in the solar system or even beyond. But staring back at those settlers in the mirror will still be the same fundamentally flawed humans. Instead of running away, wouldn’t it be better to stand and fight?Let’s nudge him back down to the ground of reason.Dr. Baird, is it possible to fight against your biological constraints? If evolution made humans this way, why fight it?How does evolution produce fundamentally flawed humans? As an evolved creature yourself, on what grounds do you judge something a flaw?Did natural selection produce your passion to fight your selfish genes? How did that happen? If selfish genes are in control, isn’t that a house divided against itself?If the world overpopulated and humans went extinct, why would that be bad, speaking only in Darwinian terms?If you want to nudge me, is it all right for me to nudge you back, if I sincerely believe your evolutionism is bad for you and for society as a whole? Why or why not?If I get a majority to nudge evolutionism out of existence, and society gets better, would you call that survival of the fittest?Nudging the nudgers can be fun. Notice that in these examples, we engage their reason and morality. Their methods use manipulation and psychological tricks, doing whatever is required to achieve the desired outcome. Recall our Baloney Detector’s definition of propaganda: “Any attempt to influence people’s actions or attitudes without making them think.” Our method of employing well-thought-out questions nudges people the old-fashioned way: treating one another with respect as rational beings above the animals, endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights. Our method requires thinking. For those afflicted with the Yoda Fallacy, however, tough love requires leveling the playing field first. We can do that by holding up a mirror to show the elitist that he is standing on nothing.(Visited 654 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0
23 December 2004Following months of preparations and construction, South African National Parks (SANParks) officially opened South Africa’s newest park to the public on Heritage Day, 24 September 2004.Previously known as Vhembe Dongola National Park, Mapungubwe National Park is situated in Musina, north-east of Polokwane, the capital of Limpopo. It is found at the confluence of the Limpopo and Shashe Rivers.The new park comprises the Mapungubwe Cultural Landscape and the Mapungubwe World Heritage Site in an area covering well over 28 000 hectares. Tourist offerings at the park The park forms part of an ambitious project to develop a major transfrontier conservation area, the Limpopo/Shashe Transfrontier Park, which will cross the borders of Botswana, South Africa and Zimbabwe, linking the Mapungubwe National Park with Botswana’s Tuli Block and Zimbabwe’s Tuli Safari area.Blown away by MapungubweLucille Davie pays a visit to the “place of the stone of wisdom”, home to South Africa’s first kingdom – and finds herself unprepared for its historical potency and natural beauty.Speaking at Tourism Indaba 2004 in Durban in May, SANParks chief executive David Mabunda said the decision to develop Mapungubwe National Park was based on the rich biodiversity, scenic beauty and immense cultural and historical significance of the area.The archaeological treasures discovered at Mapungubwe “rank among the most important pieces of ancient art yet found in sub-Saharan Africa”, Mabunda said. “They also document the rise of the Zimbabwe culture.”Until its demise at the end of the 13th century AD, Mapungubwe – “place of the stone of wisdom” – was the most important inland settlement in the sub-continent, extending over an area of about 30 000 square kilometres on either side of the Limpopo and Shashe Rivers.Declared a National Heritage Site in 2001, Mapungubwe was declared a World Heritage Site by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) in 2003, bringing to five the number of South African sites that have been awarded World Heritage status.SA’s World Heritage sites: see box down right.The findings of gold artefacts, beads, burial grounds and other remains indicate that Mapungubwe was one of the major centres of this culture, and bear testimony to the way of life of African people more than 1 000 years ago.The whole area around Mapungubwe National Park boasts a substantial amount of San Rock Art sites dating from 15 000 years back.“Together with its surrounding areas, Mapungubwe National Park has a potential to be a sanctuary for viable populations of some of the most threatened large mammals on earth, such as the black and white rhinoceros, wild dog, and the continent’s flagship species, the African elephant”, Mabunda said.SANParks believes the development of the park, due to its positioning on the international border of Botswana, South African and Zimbabwe, will also serve as a southern African growth point for tourism and conservation.Tourist offerings the parkMajor infrastructure development in the area in the last couple of months, with substantial funding from the department of environmental affairs and tourism, saw the establishment of a new road network allowing sedan vehicle access to all the sites mentioned below, the Leokwe Rest Camp, the Limpopo Forest Tented Camp, and the Vhembe Trails Camp.The entrance to Mapungubwe National Park is situated on the Musina-Pondrift Road. The park’s tourist facilities include:Leokwe Rest Camp. The park’s main rest camp is situated in a valley flanked by sandstone ridges. The camp’s theme is based on the rich history of the area, with the design derived from the typical Venda village. Facilities on offer include:A reception complex with swimming pool, kitchen and small convenience store.Fourteen two-bed cottages with open-plan kitchens.Two four-bed family cottages with open-plan kitchens.Two two-bed cottages with shower and toilet for physically disabled persons.Limpopo Forest Tented Camp. Situated within the riverine forest of the Limpopo River, this tented camp offers spacious rooms and outdoor areas catering for 16 people, with eight two-bed self-catering units. It also boasts seven semi-luxury forest tents each with a two-bed bedroom, kitchen, shower and toilet. Physically disabled people are catered for with one semi-luxury forest tent with two bed-bedroom, kitchen, shower and toilet.Tshugulu Lodge. This luxury lodge sleeps 14, with six bedrooms with en suite bathrooms, a swimming pool and an exclusive eco-trail.Vhembe Trails Camp. Based on the successful wilderness trails offered in the Kruger National Park, the Vhembe Trails Camp is situated on the perimeter of the Mapungubwe Valley. Trailists will be able to explore the rich archaeology of the area on foot with a guide, and will visit the famous Mapungubwe mountain where the golden rhinoceros was found. Visitors will be based at the camp for the duration of the three-day trail. The camp can accommodate eight people – two people per unit, each with its own ablutions.Viewpoint, tree-top walks, bird hide. In addition to the above, the park boasts a viewpoint offering breathtaking views of the Limpopo-Shashe Rivers confluence, tree-top walks allowing access to the Limpopo River, and a bird hide at Manoutswa pan.Museum & interpretation centre. The archaeological site at Mapungubwe Mountain will soon have a museum detailing the rich culture of the people who once lived in a major African trading post pre-dating Great Zimbabwe. The museum will display artefacts showing how African people lived more than 1 000 years ago, and will form part of a cultural interpretation centre whose staff will narrate the history of Mapungubwe to visitors.SouthAfrica.info reporter Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo material
While the Square Kilometre Array South Africa (SKA SA) may be globally renowned for its cutting-edge science and advanced technology, the project’s proudest contribution is to the people of the nearby town of Carnarvon in Northern Cape, and by proxy to the South African people as a whole.At a visit on 16 July 2016 to the SKA site, Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor recognised the contribution that this world-renowned radio telescope project had made to the community around it.Since the launch of the project in 2011, close consideration had been given to involving and benefitting the people of Carnarvon, including its youth.“We now see with the young people… that indeed science, astronomy sciences, can change communities, can change lives, can create opportunity, and can build new human capital in areas never imagined,” an enthusiastic Pandor said.“I’m convinced as a minister that nobody will dissuade me that big science projects matter to communities that are developing science capability.”In addition to awarding study bursaries to matriculants at the local high school who have shown an aptitude and enthusiasm for science and technology, SKA also offers business and employment opportunities to local enterprises in the area, particularly during the construction of infrastructure around the SKA site.The project also provides technical apprenticeships to the community’s tradespeople, specialising in the various mechanical and technical operations done at SKA.Personal testimonyDuring the site visit, three representatives of the town presented personal testimonials of how the project had changed lives.Janethon de Klerk is one of five Carnarvon High School 2015 matriculants who received SKA SA bursaries to study in the fields of science and technology.“I am busy with my bachelor’s degree in mathematics and physical science,” De Klerk said. She had finished her first semester with two distinctions. “I believe that now there are many opportunities for youngsters in our area in the field of science, mathematics, and technology.“I want to be known as ‘the astronomer of the Karoo’ (and) I want to thank the SKA for giving me the opportunity to do something that has never been done (here before).”Knock-on effectClemens Scheepers, another bursary recipient, this time for technical and vocational training in diesel mechanics – a vital cog in the machinery that powers the SKA project – also spoke about how the project had changed life in the small, remote town.“The arrival of the SKA was greeted with great excitement,” Scheepers said, “but also a lot of scepticism… we are used to promises that are not always delivered on (but) here I stand as an example that the SKA has delivered on the promise of helping Carnarvon as a community to grow.”Local businessman Raymond Kamies, whose construction business has been tasked with building the road safety infrastructure between Carnarvon and the SKA site, also spoke of a knock-on effect of the project, saying he was now able to provide employment to more than 50 local workers, offering their families an opportunity of a better life.Rob Adam‚ project director of SKA SA, reiterated the organisation’s commitment to investing in the community and continuing to develop and nurture a passion for science and technology that would benefit all South Africans for generations to come.SouthAfrica.info reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SouthAfrica.info material
readwrite Growing Phone Scams: 5 Tips To Avoid Why You Love Online Quizzes Google is designing its own self-driving car and has plans to build a fleet of cars it dubs “robo taxis,” blogger Jessica Lessin reports. The news comes on the heels of Google Ventures investing $258 million into the personal mobile car service Uber, a company now valued at $3.5 billion, according to TechCrunch. Google has been working on self-driving cars for a few years. But the reported plan to partner with contract manufacturers to build robotic cars—essentially a fleet of self-driving Ubers—without the involvement of major automakers would be unprecedented. Tags:#car#design#Google#now#Self-Driving#Uber How to Write a Welcome Email to New Employees? Related Posts 7 Types of Video that will Make a Massive Impac…
The main accused in the killing of Surendra Singh, a close aide of Amethi MP Smriti Irani was arrested on May 31 following an encounter with police in Amethi, officials said.Waseem was held in Shalhapur area under the Jamo police station area on May 30 night, Amethi Assistant Superintendent of Police Daya Ram said. With this, all the five accused in the case have been arrested, he said.Waseem has suffered gunshot injuries and has been admitted to a community health centre, the ASP said, adding the Jamo police station in-charge also suffered minor injuries in the gunfight. A case was registered against five people for killing Surendra Singh.Ramchandra, Dharmanath, Naseem and Golu were arrested earlier. Mr. Ramchandra is a member of the kshetra panchayat and also a local Congress leader, the police said.Singh, 50, a former head of Baraulia village, around 25 km from the Amethi district headquarters, was shot at around 11.30 p.m. on May 25. He was referred to a Lucknow hospital, but succumbed to injuries during treatment.
TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Alexander Tettey makes Norwich plea: I’m scaredby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveAlexander Tettey admits he has no idea where he stands with Norwich City.The Norway international is a key member of Norwich manager Daniel Farke’s first team system this Premier League campaign. Indeed, Tettey was again a starter for Farke in Saturday’s 2-0 defeat to Burnley at Turf Moor.But the midfielder, now 33, comes off contract in June and hasn’t heard from the Canaries about their plans. Tettey admits he’d love to stay at Carrow Road for another season, though concedes his age could work against him.Asked about his contract situation, he told VG: “I have no idea. I have no idea. 100 percent honest. All I know is that my contract expires June 30. After that … either it is a club that is crazy, that will take the chance to have me for a year, or I get to listen to my body.”Indeed, the uncertainty is concerning Tettey, as he freely admits playing football is all he knows. Now in his seventh year with Norwich, Tettey reached the 200 appearances mark for the club in December and remains a firm part of the furniture.However, with retirement now edging closer, the former Rosenborg skipper concedes he’s not looking forward to it.Tettey continues, “I think it’s scary. When you have been contracted since you were 16 until you are 34, it is a pretty long career in sport. You get up every day, have a place to go, a purpose and a meaning, and then … nothing.”I’ve read books that say there are people struggling. It’s scary.” – updated September 23
North Carolina Ports made history on April 22 by welcoming its first-ever 12,000 TEU vessel to the Port of Wilmington.The ship, Kota Pekarang, is so far the largest capacity-wise vessel to call the port. The containership is operated by Israel-based liner company ZIM in partnership with the 2M Alliance which links Asia to Wilmington.“This is a monumental milestone for North Carolina Ports and the Port of Wilmington,” Paul J. Cozza, Executive Director, North Carolina Ports, said.“This is proof of concept that we are big ship ready and capable of handling some of the largest container vessels calling East Coast ports today,”BIG NEWS: NC Ports welcomed its first ever 12,000 TEU vessel to the Port of Wilmington Monday! This milestone solidifies our capabilities of handling the largest ships calling East Coast ports! Read more here: https://t.co/xhXoT4JqOh #ncports #portofwilmington #portofprogress pic.twitter.com/ISNwaRNULT— NC Ports (@NCPorts) April 22, 2019The ship’s visit to Wilmington comes on the heels of the arrival of North Carolina Ports’ third neo-Panamax crane. The third crane arrived in early April as part of the organization’s USD 200 million capital improvements plan aimed at expanding the Port of Wilmington’s infrastructure to accommodate the 14,000 TEU vessels – the largest ships currently calling the United States East Coast.NC Ports’ infrastructure improvements plan includes a wider turning basin, berth enhancements, new neo-Panamax cranes and an overhaul of Wilmington’s container terminal. The terminal renovations will double the port’s annual throughput capacity to 1.2 million TEUs and triple its refrigerated container capacity to 1,000 plugs.
TORONTO – Facebook and Instagram will charge the goods and services tax on online advertisements purchased through their Canadian operations, but other technology giants said they aren’t ready to follow suit just yet.The U.S.-based social media networks said they decided to apply the taxes by mid-2019 in an effort to “provide more transparency to governments and policy makers around the world who have called for greater visibility over the revenue associated with locally supported sales in their countries.”The federal government has long faced pressure to force foreign online services to apply sales taxes to their work, but has shied away from such measures, despite its international trade committee urging Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to make online services pay the taxes so small- and medium-sized businesses don’t lose customers to larger firms based abroad.The decision to charge the taxes could create a windfall for the federal government and bring it closer to the 2020 deadline it set with other G20 countries to develop an international tax plan to address companies that are based in one country but have the potential to pay taxes in another.In the wake of Facebook and Instagram’s announcement, a spokesperson for Twitter Canada said it does not currently charge sales taxes on ads and a representative for Uber Canada said it already applies sales taxes on all of its rides and food delivery orders in the country.Google referred The Canadian Press to statements the company made back in May indicating that it would comply with legislation, should the federal government create regulations to require the collection of such taxes on digital sales.The company noted that it already plans to comply with similar legislation Quebec passed around its sales tax.Meanwhile, streaming service Netflix said only that it “pays all taxes when required by law.”Short-term rental company Airbnb previously asked the federal government for regulation around taxes.“We think as a platform our hosts should pay taxes. I know people get shocked when we say that, but we do. We think we should be contributing,” Alex Dagg, Airbnb’s public policy manager in Canada, said in an interview.“We just need to figure out what are the appropriate rules in place to do that and how can we facilitate that.”With files from Jordan Press in Ottawa
New Delhi: The Odisha Parba 2019, a three-day mega celebration in the heart of India’s national capital New Delhi received overwhelming response by the visitors. Many visitors including foreigners relished the authentic taste of Odisha and experienced the essence of rich cultural ethos of Odisha at this event. Lakhs of visitors were thrilled with joy to witness Odisha’s magnificent journey from the ancient maritime era to the illustrious contemporary times and a vision for future of Odisha. Organized by Odia Samaj, New Delhi Odisha Parba 2019, a celebration of Odisha’s Culture, Tradition, Heritage & Cuisine was inaugurated on 15th March 2019 at India Gate Lawn No-5, New Delhi. In the valedictory ceremony of this event, Draupadi Murmu, Governor of Jharkhand was the chief guest and Dr Arijit Pasayat, former Judge, Supreme Court, Padma Vibhushan Dr Sonal Mansingh, MP, Rajya Sabha and Odisha Dance Exponent graced the occasion as Guests of Honour and Odia Samaj President, Sidhartha Pradhan, Trustee Hiranya Mohanty were also present at the occasion.
Kolkata: A primary school in remote Sagar block in South 24-Parganas has set a precedence in creating greenery and curbing pollution.The students of Chowranghee Primary school are using the leftover food of mid day meal and other waste products and converting them into organic fertilizers and they are using it for growing trees on the school campus. The students have also been able to store excess water of deep tubewell by preventing it from flowing outside the school and have successfully cultivated seven rare varieties of food grains. This project of cultivation of foodgrains is being supervised by noted environmentalist Amalesh Mishra. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari Puja”We are giving special emphasis to environmental studies and are imparting lessons to our students on the conservation of greenery. We are using waste to convert them into organic fertilisers. We are also storing drinking water that is wasted,” said Tapas Mondal, headmaster of Chowranghee Primary School. The school, at present, has 156 students and six teachers. Midday meal is provided to the students of these schools on a daily basis as per norms of the Ministry of Human Resource Development. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayThe vegetable waste and the leftovers of food are being stored by the students themselves. “We have three separate waste bins. A red bin is used for dumping of waste paper, pen, pencil and similar educational equipment. A yellow bin is being used for storing vegetable waste and food waste while a green one is being used for plastic waste. The plastic waste is being recycled for making greetings cards,” Mondal said. The rice starch is being mixed with cow dung collected from some adjacent houses in the neigbourhood. Then earthworms are released into the mixture. In three months, it is converted into fertilisers. This is being used for growing plants that have medicinal value such as basak, tulsi and kalmegh. The entire work is being done by the students and teachers of the school. The school has come up with a reservoir for storing rainwater and tubewell water, which is usually wasted. This water is being used for cultivation of seven rare food grain varieties such as Mugai, Chapakusi, Gosba, Hangra, Taldi to name a few. However, none of these food grains are being sold commercially. In future, the school has plans to encourage local residents to adopt similar practices.