Revision of action plan on climate change begins; Village level consultation stressed
IMPHAL | Mar 12 : The directorate of environment is prepared to hold consultations at the village level to tackle climate change during its exercise of revising state action plan on climate change 2013.
The environment department kicked off the consultation programme at Trade Centre, Moreh with a two-day workshop from March 10 to 11. This is the beginning of a series of consultations, which will witness experts analysing the problems and providing inputs to address the problems that can make the revision action oriented and effective.
The first workshop focussed on alternative livelihood to jhumias in the 10 hill districts. The theme was “Empowering jhumias with secure livelihood: A challenge of ecological governance.”
Economists, scientists, other experts, NGOs working in the field, villagers and media persons attended the programme, which was organised for Tengnoupal district.
According to official records, 70,000 families in the hill districts of Manipur depend on shifting cultivation for livelihood. The annual area under shifting cultivation is estimated at 90,000 hectares, accounting for 36 per cent of the cultivable land of the state.
The action plan was introduced in 2013, incorporating 22 government departments for implementing it.
Officials of the department claimed that about 50 per cent of the action plan implementation was successful and these have good impact on climate change. Officials explained that some of the line departments need to be more active in the implementation of the action plan.
The revision of the action plan which will be implemented from this year till 2022, will be finalised after consultation of all stake holders including jhumia families and media persons.
Experts explained the averse impact on climate by wantton destruction of forest cover due to timber logging and jhum cultivation.
Many participants were of the opinion that without an alternative livelihood, the jhumia families will not stop the age-old practice.
Therefore, many of them suggested alternative source of livelihood of the families and the alternative means should be reason specific. This requires consultation with the villagers and know their problems on teh ground and effective measures.
Several participants including NGO activists and media persons suggested that such workshop should be held at the villages where shifting cultivators reside to educate them and make them known the need to stop the practice.
Deputy director of the envirornment department T. Brajakumar announced that the workshops would be held at the village and district headquarters levels in all districts in the hills. He also said media will be included as a stakeholder.
The department has listed 22 subject experts, who will deliberate during the series of workshops and advisors were appointed. The consultation programmes will continue for about three months.
One of the advisors of revision N. Mohendro Singhand experts including economist Amar Yumnam of Manipur Univerisity, offficials of forest department, envronment department, Indian Council of Agriculture Research, Central Agriculture Unioversity ananlysed the existing prroblems and made suggestions on tackling the problem in the Moreh workshop.
At the end of the workshop several recomendations were made including adoption of appropriate land use planning in the hills.
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