Press Releases

  • TERI and Government of Assam organize a multi stake-holder discussion on the "North East and the Response to Climate Change"

    13 December 2010

    - The one day summit, a build-up to the Delhi Sustainable Development Summit (DSDS) to be held in February 2011, deliberated on policies for Watershed Management, Energy Security, and Biodiversity in North-East India.
    - CM Shri Tarun Gogoi emphasises the need for Assam to have a thorough strategy to understand the implications of climate change because of its geographical location and climatic regime.

    With an aim to have a thorough strategy to understand the implications of climate change in Assam and the North Eastern region, so that well formulated measures could be taken for its people to adapt to its effects, Government of Assam, in association with The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), today organized a major state-level summit - "North East and the Response to Climate Change- Policies for Watershed Management, Energy Security, and Biodiversity". The summit was inaugurated by the honourable Chief Minister Sh Tarun Gogoi, Dr Vibha Dhawan, Executive Director TERI, Mr Naba Kumar Das, Chief Secretary, Govt of Assam and Mr Prabir Sengupta, Former Secretary, Government of India and Distinguished Fellow TERI. Senior government functionaries and opinion leaders from the North Eastern Region of the country were also present at the one-day summit.

    The prime objective of the summit was to initiate a multi stake-holder discussion around specific sustainable development issues, the prevalent best practices, and the way forward towards outlining a sustainable development road-map for the North eastern states. The Summit dwelt on four key thematic areas of: (1) impacts of climate change in the NE, and the need and value of local action; (2) successful community based approaches to biodiversity protection; (3); Local actions to increase water access in the face of climate change : Integrated watershed development approaches and Local agricultural water use and practices, and (4) Decentralized energy solutions: Specific needs of the north east, apart from deliberating on sustainable local and state level initiatives and social, environmental and institutional challenges in the state of Assam and North East par se.

    In his inaugural address the honourable Chief Minister Sh. Tarun Gogoi emphasising the need for inclusive development in the entire North East region said, "The State of Assam along with the other north eastern states should have a thorough strategy to understand the implications of climate change so that well formulated measures could be taken for its people to adapt to its effects. The strategy should have necessary policy support at the Government level and have its basis on scientific facts and evidences."

    Lauding TERI for its exemplary work in the state and the entire North Eastern region of the country, the Chief Minister said that Assam required environmental and ecological security, an area in which he solicited the support of The Energy and Resources Institute, with which the state government has long been associated. Gogoi revealed his Government recognised the need for preparing for the effects of climate change and also wanted to find solutions to perennial problems such as floods, erosion and deforestation.

    Committing TERI's expertise towards the development of the state, Dr Vibha Dhawan, Executive Director, TERI said, "TERI opened its regional centre in Guwhati in early 1990s, and since then TERI has been working closely with the state govt. We wish to further join hands with the North eastern states for promotion of energy efficient buildings and tapping renewable resources." Dr Dhawan further mentioned that this summit was a build-up event towards the Delhi Sustainable Development Summit (DSDS), TERI's annual flagship event that will take place from 3rd-5th February 2011 at New Delhi. "Local governments and its institutions assume a larger role in nurturing local resources, developing local initiatives and mobilizing the civil society towards a desirable change. There is a need to tap these initiatives and emulate them globally, which will be highlighted at the DSDS 2011."

    Mr Naba Kumar Das, Chief Secretary, Govt of Assam and Mr Prabir Sengupta, Distinguished Fellow TERI, in their addresses underlined the importance of addressing climate change by arguing that swift action needs to be taken to reduce energy consumption by 20 per cent and by pursuing a policy of development that works in tandem with all state governments in North East India.

    The deliberations at the summit are expected to considerably raise awareness on these issues among a diverse range of stakeholders, and eventually lead to incorporation of these into the development strategy of the North eastern states. TERI would also highlight key learning's from this summit at the Delhi Sustainable Development Summit scheduled for February 3-5, 2011.

    The summit is a part of a series of state-level buildup events towards the Delhi Sustainable Development Summit (DSDS), TERI's flagship event, scheduled to be held in February 2011 at New Delhi, where the aim is to effectively engage state government, institutions, multi-bilateral organizations, corporate bodies and civil society: in a bid to tap prevailing local initiatives at the state and the sub-region level and discuss specific sustainable development issues, best practices and way forward. Delhi Sustainable Development Summit 2011 proposes to reach out to six Indian states, namely Assam, Bihar, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Uttarakhand, to bring out these models of sustainability.

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