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Current Affairs for 22 March 2024

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Brought to you by the best IAS coaching in Delhi, SHRI RAM IAS. Stay updated with the latest developments, news, and insights shaping the socio-political landscape, both nationally and internationally. Our team of experts meticulously curates relevant information to keep UPSC aspirants informed and prepared for the dynamic challenges of the civil services examination. Dive into the realm of current affairs with us and embark on a journey towards success in UPSC 2025 and beyond.

World Happiness Report 2024

The annual UN-sponsored World Happiness Report has once again declared Finland as the world's happiest country for the seventh year in a row.

Key Points from the World Happiness Report 2024

Finland continues to lead as the happiest country globally for the seventh consecutive year. The top 10 happiest countries also include Denmark, Iceland, Sweden, Israel, Netherlands, Norway, Luxembourg, Switzerland, and Australia. Out of 143 countries surveyed, Afghanistan remains at the bottom of the happiness list. The United States and Germany have dropped out of the top 20 happiest nations for the first time in over a decade, ranking 23rd and 24th, respectively. The report notes a shift where the happiest countries no longer include any of the most populous nations globally. Only the Netherlands and Australia, both with populations over 15 million, are in the top 10. India maintains its position at 126th on the happiness index, similar to last year. The report highlights that older age correlates with higher life satisfaction in India. It mentions that older Indian men, especially those in higher age groups, currently married, and with an education, tend to report greater life satisfaction compared to others.

Earth Hour: March 23

The power distribution companies in Delhi are preparing for the 'Earth Hour' by encouraging consumers to turn off unnecessary lights and appliances for one hour on March 23 night. Earth Hour is a global movement organized by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to raise awareness about environmental issues and promote planet conservation. Started in Sydney, Australia, in 2007, Earth Hour has grown into a worldwide event involving millions across 190 countries and territories. People are encouraged to switch off lights for an hour from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. local time to highlight climate change challenges and energy conservation. Governments and companies also participate by turning off non-essential lights in buildings, monuments, and landmarks to emphasize the impact of energy consumption on the planet.

World Wildlife Fund (WWF)

The WWF is an international NGO founded in Switzerland in 1961 to protect endangered wildlife species and preserve natural habitats.

Subduction Zone Study

A recent study from Portugal predicts that the subduction zone beneath the Gibraltar Strait, part of the 'Ring of Fire,' might lead to the closure of the Atlantic Ocean in 20 million years. Subduction Zone refers to a spot where two tectonic plates collide, with one diving beneath the other. Tectonic plates are parts of Earth's outer layer that move slowly across its surface over millions of years, driving phenomena like earthquakes and volcanic activity.

Brucethoa isro: New Deep-Sea Isopod Species

Researchers have named a new deep-sea isopod species discovered off the Kerala coast after the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). Brucethoa isro is a newly discovered deep-sea isopod found off the Kollam coast, Kerala. This tiny crustacean, belonging to the Brucethoa genus, was found near the gills of a marine fish called the Spinyjaw greeneye. It is the second species from this genus documented in India and has been named in honor of ISRO's achievements.

World Forest Day 2024

World Forest Day, celebrated on March 21 each year, highlights the importance of forests and trees in our lives. The day encourages countries to engage in various tree-related campaigns, including planting drives, to promote forest conservation. The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the United Nations Forum on Forests coordinate the International Day of Forests. This year's theme is "Forests and Innovation: New Solutions for a Better World."

Project GR00T

Nvidia's Project GR00T aims to revolutionize humanoid robot development. It's a multimodal AI system enabling humanoid robots to learn new skills and interact with the environment. Robots built on this platform can understand natural language and imitate human actions for tasks like coordination and dexterity. The project utilizes AI techniques like imitation learning and reinforcement learning to enhance robot capabilities.

Mahakumbh 2024 Startup Event

The Start-up Mahakumbh event, inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, celebrates India's thriving startup ecosystem. The event showcases innovations from various sectors across the country. India's startup scene has seen significant growth, especially in areas like agriculture, medicine, space, and fintech. The Digital India initiative has provided momentum to startups, with UPI becoming a crucial support pillar for fintech innovations.

Papikonda National Park: Bird Species Record

A recent survey in Papikonda National Park recorded over 200 bird species, highlighting its rich biodiversity. The park, located in Andhra Pradesh, is known for its diverse flora and fauna, including tigers, gaur, and a unique dwarf goat breed. It has received recognition as an Important Bird and Biodiversity Area, underlining its significance in conservation efforts.