`Our civilization will end, if we don`t address climate change`

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IMPHAL, August 16: “It is a hard fact that our civilization today is facing a gloomy future. The current civilization that we are proud of, is about to sink if we don’t address the issue of climate change”, said professor W Nabakumar, dean, School of Human and Environment Sciences, Manipur University (MU) during the opening day of a two-day consultative workshop on State Action Plan on Climate Change.

Further speaking at the programme which was held at the Senate hall, dept of Earth Sciences, MU, he stated, “Even when we go back in history, we have known that a number of civilizations had faced tragic ends due to the devastation of their environments” and added that, “the Indus valley civilization was destroyed by flood”.

The two-day consultative workshop was sponsored by the state environment and ecology wing and jointly organized by the College Development Council (CDC), School of Human and Environment Sciences MU, Indira Gandhi Tribals University and Central Agricultural University of Manipur.

The objective of the workshop was to take views, suggestions, and inputs in formulating the state action plan on climate change from various academicians of the state. Various university lectures, college principals, research scholars were among the participants of the consultation workshop.

The consultation was also attended by prof. H Nandakumar Sharma, acting vice chancellor of MU, prof. W Nabakumar, dean School of Human and Environmental science, MU and Dr. RK Yaiskul Singh, additional director education (u) as chief guest, president and guestof honour respectively.

Speaking at the workshop prof. H Nandakumar Sharma, acting vice-chancellor, MU said that the formulation of state action plan is imperative for long term profits of the people.

He added, “If we do not formulate a good state action plan timely, then, there would be a drastic change in the society due to the negative impacts of the climate change”. He has further added that the responsibility of addressing the issue doesn’t lie solely with the government, but it needs individual responsibility to solve the problem.”

Dr. RK Yaiskul Singh, additional director education (u) has said that for mitigating the issue of climate change, it is important now to scale up the awareness programmes amongst school and college students. He added that for creating a positive response in the issue, it should be added in the academic curricula also.

Research officer of the state environment and ecology wing Dr. T Brajakumar, during an exclusive interaction with IFP, has said that till date, around 20 consultative workshops have been conducted in the state at all nine districts. He added that they are mulling over to conduct an open workshop to collect suggestions from the general public in formulating the State Action Plan on Climate Change.

He further added that the finalized draft of the state plan will be submitted to the chief secretary DS Poonia headed state steering committee on climate change.

He further maintained that after an in-depth review of the plan by the steering committee, it is likely to forward it to another high level advisory committee which was constituted under the chairmanship of the Chief Minister.

He further maintained that the central government had set March 31, 2011 as the deadline for all states to submit their state plan on climate change, however only six states have submitted their drafted state plans.

He also informed IFP that Senapati and Tamenglong districts have been identified as vulnerable areas of the state or projected areas of climate change. He also added that the two districts have been witnessing an increased in unexpected heavy rainfall, extreme weather etc as climate change event are now visible in this districts.

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