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Conventions Related to Climate Change Management


Conventions Related to Climate Change Management

Conventions Related to Climate Change Management

The Convention on Climate Change sets an overall framework for intergovernmental efforts to tackle the challenge posed by climate change. It recognizes that the climate system is a shared resource whose stability can be affected by industrial and other emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. The Convention enjoys near universal membership.
Under the Convention, ‘governments gather and share information on greenhouse gas emissions, national policies and best practices launch national strategies for addressing greenhouse gas emissions and adapting to expected impacts’, including the provision of financial and technological support to developing countries cooperate in preparing for adaptation to the impacts of climate change.
Background:
Climate change is a complex problem, which, although environmental in nature, has consequences for all spheres of existence on our planet. It either impacts on– or is impacted by– global issues, including poverty, economic development, population growth, sustainable development and resource management.
At the very heart of the response to climate change, however, lies the need to reduce emissions. In 2010, governments agreed that emissions need to be reduced so that global temperature increases are limited to below 2 degrees Celsius.
UN FRAMEWORK CONVENTION ON CLIMATE CHANGE
• In 1992, countries joined an international treaty, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), to consider what they could do to limit global temperature increases and the resulting climate change, and to cope with its impacts.
• By 1995, countries realized that emission reductions provisions in the Convention were inadequate. As a result, they launched negotiations to strengthen the global response to climate change, and, in 1997, adopted the Kyoto Protocol.
• The Kyoto Protocol legally binds developed countries to emission reduction targets. The Protocol’s first commitment period started in 2008 and ended in 2012. The second commitment period began on 1 January 2013 and will end in 2020.
• There are now 195 Parties to the Convention and 192 Parties to the Kyoto Protocol. The Protocol entered into force on 16 February 2005. Since then, the Protocol the Parties to the Protocol has continued the negotiations and has amended the Protocol to achieve more ambitious results by 2030.
The following timeline provides a brief summary of negotiations towards a climate agreement-
Negotiations timeline

INTERNATIONAL CONVENTIONS

STEPS TAKEN BY INDIA
In recognition of the growing problem of Climate Change, India declared a voluntary goal of reducing the emissions intensity of its GDP by 20–25%, over 2005 levels, by 2020, despite having no binding mitigation obligations as per the Convention. A slew of policy measures were launched to achieve this goal. As a result, the emission intensity of our GDP has decreased by 12% between 2005 and 2010. It is a matter of satisfaction that United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in its Emission Gap Report 2014 has recognized India as one of the countries on course to achieving its voluntary goal.
India has a definite plan of action for clean energy, energy efficiency in various sectors of industries, steps to achieve lower emission intensity in the automobile and transport sector, a major thrust to non-fossil based electricity generation and a building sector based on energy conservation.
• India became the 56th signatory State to sign the ‘Raptor MoU’ that was concluded on October 22, 2008 and came into effect on November 1, 2008 on conservation of birds of prey in Africa and Eurasia. The ‘Raptor MoU’ extends its coverage to 76 species of birds of prey, out of which 46 species, including vultures, falcons, eagles, owls, hawks, kites, harriers, etc. also occur in India.
• Environment Ministry released new categorisation of industries. Based on pollution scores, the re-categorisation was finalised as – Red, Orange, Green and White.
• The ninth meeting of the National Steering Committee on Climate Change (NSCCC) was held. The Committee approved the Detailed Project Reports (DPRs) on adaptation submitted by governments of Telangana, Mizoram, Jammu & Kashmir, Meghalaya and Chhattisgarh for funding, under the National Adaptation Fund on Climate Change (NAFCC) at a total cost of approximately Rs. 108 crore for implementation in these states.
• Environment Minister emphasised relevance of Indian lifestyle and its low carbon footprint at negotiations for phasing down of HFCs in Kigali.
• India welcomed landmark HFC agreement at Kigali on October 15, 2016. The Kigali Agreement is a reaffirmation of the global intent to mitigate climate change and exemplifies international co-operation in this regard. The Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol is legally binding.
• Cabinet approved ratification of Paris Agreement on September 28, 2016.
• Environment Minister constituted monitoring committee to oversee outbreak of H5 avian influenza.
• Environment Ministry reviewed ambient air quality status of Delhi and directed neighbouring states to effectively enforce ban on stubble burning.
NATIONAL SCHEMES FOR CLIMATE CHANGE MANAGEMENT
CONVENTION RELATED TERMINOLOGIES
• “Adverse effects of climate change” means changes in the physical environment or biota resulting from climate change which have significant deleterious effects on the composition, resilience or productivity of natural and managed ecosystems or on the operation of socio-economic systems or on human health and welfare.
• “Climate change” means a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods.
• “Climate system” means the totality of the atmosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere and geosphere and their interactions.
• “Emissions” means the release of greenhouse gases and/or their precursors into the atmosphere over a specified area and period of time.
• “Greenhouse gases” means those gaseous constituents of the atmosphere, both natural and anthropogenic, that absorbs and re-emits infrared radiation.
• “Regional economic integration organization” means an organization constituted by sovereign States of a given region which has competence in respect of matters governed by this Convention or its protocols and has been duly authorized, in accordance with its internal procedures, to sign, ratify, accept, approve or accede to the instruments concerned “Reservoir” means a component or components of the climate system where a greenhouse gas or a precursor of a greenhouse gas is stored.
• “Sink” means any process, activity or mechanism which removes a greenhouse gas, an aerosol or a precursor of a greenhouse gas from the atmosphere.
• “Source” means any process or activity which releases a greenhouse gas, an aerosol or a precursor of a greenhouse gas into the atmosphere.


Rashtrakutas and Other South Indian Kingdoms


Rashtrakutas and Other South Indian Kingdoms

The Rashtrakutas (755 – 975 A.D.)

• The Rashtrakutas were of Kannada origin and Kannada language was their mother tongue.
• Dantidurga was the founder of the Rashtrakuta dynasty. He defeated the Gurjaras and captured Malwa from them. Then he annexed the Chalukya kingdom by defeating Kirtivarman II. Thus, the Rashtrakutas became a paramount power in the Deccan.
• Dantidurga successor Krishna I was also a great conqueror. He defeated the Gangas and the eastern Chalukyas of Vengi.
 Krishna I built the magnificent rock-cut monolithic Kailasa temple at Ellora.
• The next important king of this dynasty was Govinda III. He achieved victories over north Indian kingdoms.
• Govinda III successor Amoghavarsha I (815- 880 A.D.) ruled for a long period of 64 years. He had lost control over Malwa and Gangavadi. Yet, his reign was popular for the cultural development. He was a follower of Jainism. Jinasena was his chief preceptor. He was also a patron of letters and he himself wrote the famous Kannada work, Kavirajamarga. He had also built the Rashtrakuta capital, the city of Malkhed or Manyakheda.
• Among the successors of Amoghavarsha I, Krishna III (936-968 A.D.) was famous for his expeditions. He marched against the Cholas and defeated them at Takkolam. He marched further south and captured Tanjore. He went as far as Rameswaram and occupied it for sometime. He built several temples in the conquered territories including the Krishneswara temple at Rameswaram. Throughout his reign he possessed the Tondaimandalam region including the capital Kanchi. After his death, the power of the Rashtrakutas declined.

Administration

• The Rashtrakuta Empire was divided into several provinces called Rashtras under the control of Rashtrapatis.
• Rashtras were further divided into Vishayas or districts governed by Vishayapatis.
• The next subdivision was Bhukti consisting of 50 to 70 villages under the control of Bhogapatis. Bhogapatis were directly appointed by the central government.
• The village administration was carried on by the village headmen. However, the village assemblies played a significant role in the village administration.

Society and Economy

• The Hindu sects of Vaishnavism and Saivism flourished during the period of Rashtrakutas. Yet, they did not affect the progress of Jainism under the patronage of Rashtrakuta kings and officers. Almost one third of the population of the Deccan were Jains.
• There were some prosperous Buddhist settlements at places like Kanheri, Sholapur and Dharwar.
• There was harmony among various religions.
• There was a college at Salatogi, situated in modern Bijapur district. It was run by the income from the endowments made by the rich as well as by all the villagers on occasions of functions and festivals.
• The economy was also in a flourishing condition. There was an active commerce between the Deccan and the Arabs. The Rashtrakuta kings promoted the Arab trade by maintaining friendship with them.
Cultural Contributions
• The Rashtrakutas widely patronized the Sanskrit literature and there were many scholars in the Rashtrakuta court.
• Trivikrama wrote Nalachampu and the Kavirahasya was composed by Halayudha during the reign of Krishna III.
• The Jain literature flourished under the patronage of the Rashtrakutas.
• Amogavarsha I, who was a Jain patronized many Jain scholars. His teacher Jinasena composed Parsvabhudaya, a biography of Parsva in verses.
• Another scholar Gunabhadra wrote the Adipurana, the life stories of various Jain saints. Sakatayana wrote the grammer work called Amogavritti.
• The great mathematician of this period, Viracharya was the author of Ganitasaram.
• The Kannada literature saw its beginning during the period of the Rashtrakutas.
• Amogavarsha’s Kavirajamarga was the first poetic work in Kannada language.
• Pampa was the greatest of the Kannada poets. His famous work was Vikramasenavijaya.
• Ponna was another famous Kannada poet and he wrote Santipurana.

Art and Architecture

• The art and architecture of the Rashtrakutas were found at Ellora and Elephanta.
• At Ellora, the most remarkable temple is the Kailasa temple.
– It was excavated during the reign of Krishna I.
– It is carved out of a massive block of rock 200 feet long, and 100 feet in breadth and height.
– The temple consists of four parts – the main shrine, the entrance gateway, an intermediate shrine for Nandi and mandapa surrounding the courtyard.
– The temple stands on a lofty plinth 25 feet high.
– The central face of the plinth has imposing figures of elephants and lions giving the impression that the entire structure rests on their back.
– It has a three-tiered sikhara or tower resembling the sikhara of the Mamallapuram rathas.
– In the interior of the temple there is a pillared hall which has sixteen square pillars.
– The Kailasa temple is an architectural marvel with it beautiful sculptures.
– The sculpture of the Goddess Durga is shown as slaying the Buffalo demon.
– In another sculpture Ravana was making attempts to lift Mount Kailasa, the abode of Siva.
– The scenes of Ramayana were also depicted on the walls.
– The general characteristics of the Kailasa temple are more Dravidian.
• Elephanta is an island near Bombay and was originally called Sripuri.
– The Portuguese after seeing the large figure of an elephant named it Elephanta.
– The sculptural art of the Rashtrakutas reached its zenith in this place.
– There is a close similarity between the sculptures at Ellora and those in Elephanta.
– At the entrance to the sanctum there are huge figures of dwara-palakas.
– In the walls of the prakara around the sanctum there are niches containing the images of Shiva in various forms – Nataraja, Gangadhara, Ardhanareesvara and Somaskanda.
– The most imposing figure of this temple is Trimurthi.
– The sculpture is six metre high which represent the three aspects of Shiva as Creator, Preserver and Destroyer.
The Cheras (9th to 12th Century)
• The Chera kingdom was another of the historical Tamil chiefdoms of southern India, which controlled the most of the Canuvery river valley.
• It first arose some time after the 3rd century BC with Karuvur-Van-chi as its inland political centre and Muchiri on the Kerala cost as its port of trade, where merchants exchanged pepper for gold and wine from the Roman empire.
• The Cheras exercised a clan rule under different lingages.
• Its rulers apparently fought intertribal conflicts with the Cholas and Pandyas, and subjugated minor chiefs of the Velir clan.
• The Chera kingdom of Makotai was established in the 9th century in the Periyar valley of Derala, with Makotaipuram (Kodungallur) and Quilon as its first and second capital.
• The kingdom acquired an agrarian base through land grants to Brahmins and Brahmin institutions, such as temples to Siva and Vishnu, trading ventures with Arab and Jewish lands provided commercial resources.
• Contemporary texts give an account of the ruling dynasty’s legendary origins and history.
• Makotai was supposedly hostile to the Pandyas but friencly with the Mushakas of Kerala.
• Despite a series of defensive wars, constant invasisons by the Cholas of Tanjavur led to the disintegration of the Makotai kingdom by the early 12th century.

The Yadavas of Devgiri (12th to 13th Century)
• The first member of the dynasty was Dridhaprahara.
• However, Seunachandra I, the son of Dridhaprahar, was the first to secure feudatory status for his family from the Rashtrakutas.
• The importance of Seunachandra I can be assessed from the fact that the territory ruled by the Yadavas came to be known as Seuna desa.
• Meanwhile, the great Chalukyan power was already on the road to decline and the Yadavas naturally took advantage of the situation and asserted their independence.
• Bhillama, thus, laid the foundationof the Yadava Empire which endured for about a century.
• Simhana was the most powerful ruler of the family.
• As the Hoyasalas proved a great obstacle to the further expansion of the kingdom in the south, Simhana launched a successful campaign against them.
• Elated by successes in the south, Simhana waged war against his hereditary enemies in the north the Paramaras of Malwa and the Chalukyas of Gujarat.
• Simhana defeated and killed the Paramara king Arjunavarman. Thus, the Yadava kingdom reached the zenith of its glory and power in the reign of Simhan.
• None among the Hoyasalas, the Kakatiyas, the Paramaras and the Chalukyas dared to challenged his supremacy in the Deccan.
• Simhana was also a patron of music and literature.
• Singitaratnakara of Sarangadeva, an important work on music, was written in his court.
• Anantadeva and Changadeva were the two famous astronomers who also adorned his court.
• Changadeva establidhed a collage of astronomy at Patana in Khandesh in memory of his illustrious grandfather, Bhaskaracharya.
• Anantadeva wrote a commentary on Bharhmagupta’s Brahmasutra Siddhanta and Varahamihira’s Brihat Jataka.
• Sankaradeva was probably the last of the Yadava rulers. After his accession, he immediately repudiated the authority of Alauddin.
• Malik Kafur easily defeated Sankaradeva, put him to death and annexed the Yadav kingdom.
Literature and Science
Under the Chalukyas of Kalyani
• The Chaludya period withnessed a phenomenal growth in literature, both in Sansdrit and Kannada.
• Among the Sanskrit writers of the period, the foremost in Bihana, the court poet of Vidramaditya VI.
• Vikramankadevacharita of Bilhana is a mahakavaya.
• The great jurist Vikramaditya, wrote the famous Mitaksara, a commentary on the Yanjavalkya Smriti,
• Somesvara III was the author of encyclopadic work, Manasollasa or Abhilashitarha-chintamani.
• Under the western Chalukyas, Kannada literature reached great heights.
• The three Literary gems, Pampa, Ponna and Ranna, contributed to the development of Kannada literature in the 10th century. Of the three, Ranna was the court poet of Satyasraya, while the other two belonged to earlier decades.
• Nagavarma I was another poet of fame. He was the author of Chandombudhi, ‘Ocean of Prosody’, the earliest work on the subject in Kannada. He also wrote Karnataka-Kandambari which is based on Bana’s celebrated romance in Sanskrit.
• The Verasaiva mystics, especially Basava, contributed to the development of Kannada language and literature, particularly prose literature. They brought into existence the Vachana Literature to convey high philosophical ideas to the common man in simple language.
Under the Yadavas
• The Senas gave a great impetus to the development of Sanskrit Literature.
• The family of the famous astronomer and mathematician Bhaskaracharya belonged to this period.
• Bhaskaracharya’s father, Mahesvari (known as Kavisvara), wrote two works on astrology, Sekhara and Laghutika.
• Of the numerous works of Bhaskaracharya, the most famous are Siddhanta Siromani (composed in 1150) and Karanakuthuhala, the first being the best treatise on algebra to be found in Sanskrit Literature.
• Bhaskaracharya’s son Lakshmidhara and his grandson Changadeva were the court astrologers of Jaitugi and Simhana respectively.
• Bhaskaracharya’s grand-nephew Anantadeva, a protege of Simhana, was a master of the three branches of astronomy and wrote a commentary on the Brihat Jataka of Varahamihira and also on one chapter of Brahmasphuta Siddhana of Brahmagrupta.
Under the Kakatiyas
• The kakatiya rules extended liberal patronage to Sanskrit.
• Several eminent Sanskrit writers and poets authored inscriptions which must be regarded as kavyas in miniature.
• Of these writers, Achinterdra was commissioned by Rudradeva to compose the Prasati embodies in the Anumakonda inscription.
• Telugu literature also flourished in the Kakatiya Kingdom.
• Several inscriptions were composed party or wholly in Telugu verse, like the inscriptions at Gudur of (Beta II), Karimnagar (Gangakhara), Upparapalle (Kata) and Konnidena (Opilisiddhi).
• The new religious movement like Vaishnavism and Virasaivism gave a great impetus to Telugu literature.
Contact with Southeast Asia
• Indians have been moving out from ancient time to different parts of the world for trade and other activities.
• As far as the Indian contact with Southeast Asia is concerned, it appears to be as old as fifth century B.C.
• Jatakas, the Buddhist texts belonging to this period refer to Indians visiting Suvarnadvipa (island of gold), which is identified with Java.
• Such early contacts with Southeast Asia are confirmed by the recent archeological finds of pearls and ornaments of agate and carnelian, the semi-precious stones of Indian origin, from the coastral sites in Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, etc. These finds belong to as far back as first century BC.
• According to the Chinese traditions, the first kingdom in South east Asia was founded at Funan (Cambodia) in the fourth century AD by a brahman known as Kaundinya who had come from India and had married the local princess.
• Indian and Southeast Asian contacts became closer from 5th century AD onwards when inscriptions in Sanskrit language start appearing in many areas.
• It reached its peak during AD 800-AD 1300 when many kings and dynasties with Indian names emerge all over Southeast Asia.
• The Southeast contact was largely on account of trade.
• Southeast Asia is rich in cardamom, sandal wood, camphor, cloves etc. which formed important items of trade between India and the West.
• Initially, the Indian traders appear to have settled along the coast, but gradually they shifted their network to the interior.
• Along with the traders came the priests particularly the Buddhist and brahmanas, to meet the ritual requirements of the Indian settlers and thus created a situation for the spread of Indian social and cultural ideas in South east Asia.
• But it must be noted that Indian contact did not uproot the local culture. It was rather a case of peaceful intermixing of Indian concepts with local cultural features.
• While Sanskrit was accepted as a language of court and religion in Southeast Asia the regional languages continued to be used side by side, and we find many inscriptions in mixed Sanskrit and local language.
• Similarly, the concept of varna was known to the south east Asians and brahmanas were respected in society, but social divisions were not rigid as it was in India.
• The most important empire which come to be founded in South east Asia in the 8th Century AD was the Shailendra empire. It comprised Java, Sumatra, Malay- Pennisula and other parts of the Southeast Asian region. They were a leading naval power and on account of their geographical position controlled the trade between China and India as well as other countries in the west.
• The Shailendra kings were followers of Buddhism and had close contact with the Indian rulers. One of the kings of this empire, built a monastery at Nalanda in the ninth century, and at his request the Pala king Devapala of Bengal granted five villages for its upkeep.
• Similarly in the eleventh century another Shailendra king was permitted by the Chola king Rajaraja I to build a Buddhist monastery at Nagapattam on the Tamil Coast.
• The Shailendras also built a beautiful temple dedicated to Buddha at Barabudur in Java. It is situated on the top of a hillock and consists of nine gradually receding terraces.
• Besides Buddhism, the worship of Hindu gods such as Vishnu and Siva was also quite popular in Southeast Asia and the temples dedicated to them have been found at various places which show distinct traces of Indian influence and inspiration.
• One of the most famous temples, dedicated to Vishnu, is Angkorvat temple built in the 12th century by Surya Varman II, the king of Kambuja (Cambodia). It is surrounded by a moat, filled with water. It has a huge gopuram (gateway) and number of galleries, the walls of which are decorated with sculptures based on themes drawn from Mahabharat and Ramayana.

Bio-Digester Toilet


Bio-Digester Toilet

Human waste disposal in high altitude and low temp areas, Moving Railway coaches, Buses, Big Cities, Mines, remote areas, Beaches, Rural areas, long distance buses is a burning problem.
The problem has further aggravated in glaciers where ambient temperature drops to -40 degree C and lower. The low temp stops/ delays the natural bio-degradation of the waste leading to its preservation (accumulation) for long time resulting in environmental hazard. Local heating by direct sunlight exposes the waste buried in the ice causing nuisance and foul smell. The melting ice takes the waste to rivers disturbing the aquatic eco system. More over human waste is also responsible for spreading of water born diseases like typhoid, cholera, Shigellosis, Amebic Dysenteries, Diarrhea etc.
Bio-Digester Toilet is a decomposition mechanized toilet system by means of which the sludge(Human Waste), the fecal matter is decomposed to bits in the digester tank using a specific high graded bacteria further converting them into methane and water, discharged further to the desired surface. The Bio-digester toilet is total maintenance-free system & does not require any sewage system. The specific high graded bacteria involved in these bio-digester toilets carries on to further auto generation on their own because of their supreme quality. Bio-toilet technology is based on anaerobic biodegradation of organic waste by unique microbial consortium and works at a wide temperature range. The bacterial consortium degrades night soil at temp as low as -20 degree C and produces colorless, odorless and inflammable gas containing 50 – 70% methane.
Indian Railway and Bio toilets
• Indian RAIL has rolled out new coaches with bio-toilets, using the bio-digester concept of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
• In phases, all conventional toilets will be replaced with bio-toilets, and the Southern Railway is looking at having only bio-toilets by 2022.
• Under the bio-toilet concept of the DRDO, the bio-digester tank in every toilet is filled with inoculums containing four types of bacteria. The water trap system in the toilet prevents air from getting into the tank, the human waste is processed by anaerobic bacteria in seven chambers in the tank and the methane gas is allowed to escape into the air.

National Clean Energy Fund


National Clean Energy Fund

The National Clean Energy Fund (NCEF) is a fund created in 2010-11 using the carbon tax – clean energy cess – for funding research and innovative projects in clean energy technologies of public sector or private sector entities, upto the extent of 40% of the total project cost. Assistance is available as a loan or as a viability gap funding, as deemed fit by the Inter-Ministerial group, which decides on the merits of such projects.
The Fund is designed as a non lapsable fund under Public Accounts and with its secretariat in Plan Finance II Division, Department of Expenditure, Ministry of Finance
An Inter Ministerial Group (IMG) chaired by Finance Secretary approves
the projects/schemes eligible for financing under the NCEF.
These projects include innovative schemes like Green Energy Corridor for boosting up the transmission sector, Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM)’s installation of solar photovoltaic (SPV) lights and small capacity lights, installation of SPV water pumping systems, SPV Power Plants, Grid Connected Rooftop SPV Power Plants, pilot project to assess wind power potential etc.

Sea Water Greenhouse


Sea Water Greenhouse

Introduction:
• The technology was introduced by British inventor Charlie Paton in the early 1990s and is being developed by his UK Company Seawater Greenhouse Ltd.
• The seawater greenhouse is a response to the global water crisis.
• A seawater greenhouse is a greenhouse structure that enables the growth of crops in arid regions, using seawater and solar energy.
Process:
• The technique involves pumping seawater (or allowing it to gravitate if below sea level) to an arid location and then subjecting it to following
processes:
I. It is used to humidify and cool the air.
II. It is evaporated by solar heating and distilled to produce fresh water.
III. Finally, the remaining humidified air is expelled from the greenhouse and used to improve growing conditions for outdoor plants.
IV. The more concentrated salt water may either be further evaporated for the production of salt and other elements, or discharged back to the sea.
Regions and criteria:
• Seawater Greenhouse systems operate most efficiently and achieve greatest profitability when they are located in arid regions, in proximity to the sea and close to consumer end markets.
• The distance and elevation from the sea must be evaluated considering the energy required to pump water to the site.
Advantages:
• The system does not rely on scarce fresh water, costly desalination equipment or fossil-fuel driven greenhouse climate control systems.
• Even in the most hostile, arid regions, the Seawater Greenhouse can create ideal growing conditions for crops inside the greenhouse and produce fresh water for irrigation, using only seawater and sunlight.
• The technology can be used to produce a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, flowers etc. in most of the world’s driest regions. The Greenhouses can be adapted to suit a variety of customers, from small to large-scale growers.
• Seawater Greenhouse growers can therefore enjoy these advantages from both an economic and environmental perspective.

Sai Praveen

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