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North-East Conclave on Climate Change Highlights Urgent Need for Adaptive Strategies

Bhubaneswar: The North-East Conclave on Climate Change: Adaptation and Resilience (NCCCAR-2024) concluded with a call for urgent action to address the detrimental effects of climate change on the unique ecosystem of Northeast India. The two-day event, hosted by DST’s Centre of Excellence at the Department of Environmental Science at Tezpur University, brought together a diverse group of stakeholders from all North-Eastern states to deliberate on innovative solutions to combat climate change.

The conclave underscored the critical importance of adaptive strategies in agriculture and conservation efforts to mitigate the adverse impacts of climate change on natural habitats, vegetation, and vital bioresources in the region. Participants emphasized the need for tailored solutions to address the specific challenges posed by climate change in Northeast India.

Dr. Anita Gupta, Head of the Climate, Energy, and Sustainable Technology (CEST) Division at the Department of Science and Technology (DST), highlighted the intricate dynamics among ecology, environment, economy, ecosystem, and energy—the “5 E’s”—underscoring the urgent need for comprehensive research and collaborative efforts to address climate-related issues in the region.

“Northeastern states are among the most vulnerable to climate risks,” said Professor N H Ravindranath from IISc Bangalore, emphasizing the urgent need for collaboration among research institutions to develop adaptation policies and programs. He commended the contributions of DST in climate change research and capacity building in the Northeastern states.

The event also showcased the contributions of Tezpur University’s Department of Environmental Science in various research fields related to environmental science, as highlighted by Prof. Shambhu Nath Singh, the Vice-Chancellor of Tezpur University.

Dr. Susheela Negi, Senior Director/Scientist F, Climate, Energy, and Sustainable Technology (CEST) Division at DST, discussed the initiatives undertaken by DST under missions NMSKCC and NMSHE, stressing the importance of prioritizing adaptation and enhancing adaptive capacity in the region.

The conclave provided a platform for scientists, academicians, policymakers, and experts to exchange knowledge and ideas on addressing climate change-induced impacts such as habitat loss, declining crop yields, and changes in water cycles. A book titled Compendium on Climate Change: Adaptation and Resilience in Northeast India was released during the inaugural ceremony, further enriching the discourse on climate change in the region.

The event concluded with a commitment to foster dialogue and collaboration in tackling the pressing challenges posed by climate change in the vulnerable ecosystem of the eastern Himalayan region. Prof. K. Marimuthu, Head of the Department of Environmental Science, and Prof. Ashalata Devi, DST’s CoE PI and Convenor of the event, along with Dr. B.K. Tiwari, Retd. Professor from the Department of Environmental Science, NEHU, Shillong, were among the esteemed dignitaries present at the occasion.

The North-East Conclave on Climate Change marked a significant step forward in mobilizing collective action to safeguard the ecological integrity and resilience of Northeast India in the face of climate change challenges.

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