Thursday, July 24, 2014

MP advises MoEF to plan better for Climate Change

GANGTOK, 23 July: Lok Sabha MP PD Rai today urged the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change to prepare a white paper to address specific concerns arising out of climate change in the North-Eastern region.
Speaking at the debate on Demand for Grants for the MoEF in the Lok Sabha, Mr. Rai highlighted the political and economic impacts of climate change in the region. He also detailed steps taken by the Sikkim Government to address the issue, a press communiqué from the MP’s press office informs.
Mr. Rai informed the House about the potential impact of climate change on agricultural yield in the North-Eastern region, particularly Sikkim’s North District, where impact is expected to be the highest in the region according to scientific studies, the release adds.
He also raised concerns over the reduction in budgetary allocation for North-Eastern region from Rs. 191 crore in the Interim Budget to about Rs. 181 crore in the current Budget.
Welcoming the new National Mission on Himalayan Studies - for promoting research for sustainable development of the Himalayan region - he expressed hope that the Centre will address both climate change and developmental issues in the region.
He also highlighted the importance of forestry research in addressing climate change issues. He raised concerns over the low budgetary support for Indian Council for Forestry Research and Education, an institution of national importance. He said that lack of funding has adversely impacted the research output of the institution. He stressed the need for enhancing budgetary allocation to enable the institution to undertake new research projects for the rejuvenation of forests.
Furthermore, he highlighted the need for policy level intervention to specify the norms for forest cover for States in the country. He said that such a policy will enable States with high forest cover to undertake developmental initiatives.

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