Northeast

Senapati villages step up for sustainability through effective management of community conserved areas

"We have had an environment policy since 2015. Our vision is to tackle global warming and other climate change issues through sustainable methods.”

ByIFP Bureau

Updated 25 Jun 2022, 7:08 am

(Photo: IFP)
(Photo: IFP)

 

Over 15 villages inhabited by Maram community in Senapati district have stepped up for sustainability of forests and natural resources through effective management of community conserved areas.

The call for effective management of community conserved areas was made during a one-day workshop jointly organised by the Foundation for Ecological Security, Manipur Baptist Convention and Maram Naga Baptist Association on Thursday at Maram Union Complex, Senapati district.

Speaking to the media on the sidelines of the workshop, Peace and Development Director of Manipur Baptist Convention, T Karang Maram said that the convention, despite being a faith based organisation, has been putting efforts and visiting churches for sustainability of community conserved areas and forests. 

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"We have had an environment policy since 2015. Our vision is to tackle global warming and other climate change issues through sustainable methods,” he said. 

He further said that under a research project of National Mission Himalayan Studies implemented by the convention by tying up with the forest department, around 1,100 fruit bearing trees are being planted in each hectare of the conserved area. 

So far, villages inhabited by the Maram community have planted fruit bearing trees in around 15 hectares while Mao villages have planted fruit bearing trees in 4-5 hectares of land. Thangal and Poumai communities are also following suit. Besides, some areas have been identified as conserved areas where hunting of birds and animals and felling of trees have been prohibited by the community, he stated. 

He also cited the example of Phayeng village in Imphal West as very impressive where the villagers apply traditional knowledge and conserve the forest areas.  

Meanwhile, senior project manager of Foundation for Ecological Security, Rinshang Pheiray stated that conservation is behavioural and needs to be a steady process. 

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“Besides, if there is no livelihood benefits from conservation of forests, it will all go back to square one and people will start felling trees or hunt animals and birds. Conservation needs to be looked at from the livelihood security perspective,” he pointed out. 

Rinshang further emphasised that people can no longer depend on the idea that nature will heal by itself. Restoration activities are becoming vital and we envisaged an effective management plan at the community level where the forests are protected and the community get benefits as well. Such ends can be achieved through collaborative approach of the government and community, he added. 

He maintained that there are hardly any committees looking after the community conserved areas despite every village having some sort of community conserved areas. 

Bridging the scientific management of forests and traditional knowledge and capacity building of the committees and village leaders is becoming crucial for sustainability of forests and conserved areas, he said. 

He pointed out that protected and reserved forests, wildlife sanctuaries and national parks have their own guiding principles. Even community conserved areas need to have guiding principles whether it comes under wildlife protection or biodiversity conservation to ensure sustainability. Such can be achieved with the ‘other effective area based conservation measures’, he added.

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Tags:

natural resourcessenapatiforestsustainable developmentmaram

IFP Bureau

IFP Bureau

IMPHAL, Manipur

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