An Indian organization that leverages tourism and technology to assist remote communities access solar power has won a prestigious UN award for its efforts to combat global climate change amid the Covid-19 pandemic. the worldwide Himalayan Expedition (GHE) is among the winners of the 2020 UN Global Climate Action Award. GHE is one of the world’s first organizations using tourism and technology to bring solar power to remote communities.
GHE’s works and achievements-
GHE conducts “Impact Expeditions” to remote Himalayan villages and uses some of the expedition fees to fund the cost of capital of the hardware, transportation, installation, and training of village-scale solar micro-grids. The micro-grid infrastructure found out by GHE is owned and operated by the community.
To date, the GHE has solar electrified quite 131 villages in three regions of India, directly impacting the lives of quite 60,000 villagers. quite 1,300 travelers from 60 different countries are a neighborhood of those expeditions. Enabling livelihood through homestay tourism has generated over USD 114,000 in income for the villages, which represents a forty-five percent increase within the annual household income, the statement said.
68 million and counting: Pre-Election voting within the US Elections
While the US voters are ready to vote for his or her favorite candidates on the polling day – 3rd November, but you’d be surprised to understand that half the voters that voted in 2016 have already exercised their franchise.
Several states are reporting record-breaking turnout as voters are energized to vote by mail or early face to face before November 3. quite 68.5 million Americans have voted thus far with seven days to travel until November 3, consistent with a survey of election officials altogether 50 states and Washington, DC, by CNN. In 2016, quite 136.5 million ballots were cast within the presidential election. The 68.5 million ballots cast thus far represents about 50.2% of that 2016 total. Eighteen states out of fifty have also crossed their halfway marks for the entire 2016 ballot cast. That’s some 19 million more pre-election votes than were cast within the 2016 election, consistent with the U.S. Elections Project, turnout-tracking database travel by University of Florida’s Professor Michael McDonald.
A state-wise breakup
In Texas, for instance, 7.8 million early votes had been cast as of Tuesday morning, marking 87% of the state’s total votes in 2016. Montana, North Carolina, Florida, and Georgia have also reached 67% or more of their 2016 vote totals. Democrats have amassed significant leads over Republicans in pre-Election Day voting in key states, raising the stakes for President Donald Trump, who will need blockbuster polling day turnout to shut the gap. “As coronavirus cases spike across the country, the Trump ‘strategy’ of counting on the in-person vote, especially polling day, looks all the riskier,” tweeted Michael McDonald, a professor at the University of Florida who tracks vote.
A new trend
once we check out the general electorate, there are more people voting by mail than face to face early in most states. consistent with data from the middle for Information & Research on Civic Learning and Engagement, or CIRCLE, a search center at Tufts University, the numbers of children voting early have skyrocketed, particularly in states which will be critical. children wield significant political power, Millennials and a few members of Generation Z structure 37% of eligible voters. for many years, youth voters have shown up to the polls at relatively low rates but it’s going to change now.
What does the trend suggest?
Roberto Rodriguez, assistant deputy supervisor of elections in Florida’s Miami-Dade County told NPR that, “We’re expecting 80% turnout this year supported the voting numbers that have are available .” He said quite 266,000 people had voted at an early voting site face to face and quite 390,000 had voted by mail, as of Sunday night in his county. But it’s to caution that early numbers don’t paint the complete picture, which might only become clear after the polling day.
What is Pre-Election Voting?
Early voting, also called advance polling or pre-poll voting may be a voting process by which voters during a public election can vote before the scheduled polling day. Early voting can happen remotely, like via postal voting, or face to face, usually in designated early voting polling stations. The goals of early voting are usually to extend voter participation and relieve congestion at polling stations on polling day, which assumes importance within the times like this. As unconditional voluntary early voting has gained ground, some critics have condemned the method as damaging to the democratic process. Early voting is sort of almost like the “no-excuse” absentee voting. Early voting face to face is allowed without excuse in 33 U.S. states and within the District of Columbia (DC). Absentee voting by mail without excuse is allowed in 28 states and DC, while in 20 states, an excuse is required. alongside the US, early voting is additionally practiced in other countries like Australia, Canada, Finland, Germany, Ireland, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Thailand, Switzerland, and Malta.
Is early voting good or bad?
“This could also be a drag for several reasons,” says Matt Lewis at The Daily Caller. Early voting is dear for states and campaigns, sends voters to the polls prematurely, and most importantly, “doesn’t work.” actually, “researchers at the University of Wisconsin demonstrated that early voting can actually depress turnout”.
1. the first problem with early voting is that it isn’t fair, says Ed Lasky at American Thinker. Letting people lock in their votes even before the “debates can enlighten voters could also be a travesty.” There’s also the problem of fraud with absentee ballots.
2. Early voting can give the advantage to campaigns that raise extra cash because it allows them to require an edge in outreach programs to put ballots in people’s hands as early as they’re going to.
3. Early voting threatens the essential nature of citizen choice in a democratic, republican government. In an age of various non-political distractions, it is vital to preserving the space of an election campaign.
4. It avoids the voter to chase the election campaign till the last, which could be responsible for him making a wrong choice. The 2008 election, as an example, could have ended differently had many voters cast their ballots before the large depression that followed the collapse of Lehman Brothers that September.
5. it’d also systematically help incumbents and quasi-incumbents a bit like the vice presidents, who generally have the advantage of getting been within the limelight longer and acquire more TV bytes.
6. This weakens civic cohesiveness, and it threatens to substitute raw preferences and momentary opinion for rational deliberation.
The electoral commission rightly notes that early voting also has its advantages for individual voters, not just by avoiding long lines, but in many cases also getting to vote on weekends without having to miss work or school. the primary voting period provides campaigns with an extended period to make contacts with people to encourage them to vote. Moreover, there could be other ways of achieving a variety of benefits of early voting, like old-fashioned absentee ballots or fixing more polling places and even a limited few-days-early voting period. this might help in preserving the benefits of early voting in conjunction with removing a variety of its shortcomings.