World Environment Day observed jointly by PAD & NEADS

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The World Environment Day, observed for the first time in the United States in 1974, has become one of the most celebrated events of the United Nations for it’s importance in the present context. This year in Assam, two frontline Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) Jorhat based North East Affected-Area Development Society (NEADS) and People’s Action for Development (PAD) with Head Office at Gogamukh in Dhemaji district observed the event abiding by the Covid-19 protocols imposed by the government.
The World Environment Day has become more significant to create awareness among the world community on deteriorating environment across the globe. Human activities, like massive combustion of fossil fuels, excessive use of natural resources in unscientific manner, huge deforestation, human encroachment to natural bodies like fresh water sources, protected forest areas etc has debilitated the earth atmosphere. The emissions of Green House Gases (GHGs) from the fuel based vehicles, factories, industries, power projects etctrap the heat of the Sun on the earth atmosphere which resulted in global warming. Carbon dioxide, the most talked GHG has been emitting by the global companies in gigatons and to absorb the gas the amount of trees have always been decreasing over the decades.
Climate change, caused by the global warming, has been intensifying and increasing the frequencies of disasters like cyclone, floods, tornadoes, wildfires, droughts, vector borne and other diseases, desertification in many parts of the world, change in weather pattern and hydrological cycle, water scarcity etc globally and increasing the sea surface temperature and sea level rising by melting ice in polar regions and glaciers. It’s considered as the most terrific threat to human civilisation. World leaders and concerned scientists are now trying to take urgent initiatives to save the planet from global warming. Many treaties have been signed among the nations to reduce emission GHGs. The Paris Treaty, which was signed in 2015 in a Conference of the Parties (CoPs) under United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the nations agreed upon it that the earth’s temperature would be restricted within 1.5 C, if not upto 2 C from the pre-industrial period by 2021. The issue of climate change has become more sensitive and therefore, the significance of the World Environment Day has been increasing.
The staffs of “Strengthening Resilience: Sustainable Adaptation to Climate Change in Flood-Affected Areas of Assam through Multi-Sectoral Prevention and Adaptation Mechanisms and Advocacy” – a PAD’s project, planted saplings in the high rise platform (used during flood for shelter) at the flood affected Gongrabari village under Bihpuria Revenue Circle in Lakhimpur district. Philipson Sona, the Deputy Director of PAD and also the Project Co-ordinator told, “The findings of the scientific studies on envoronment and climate change are so terrible that we must do something for the betterment of the planet Earth where we live. Amid Covid – 19 restrictions we did this programme to create awareness in the villages, which had already been affected by the impacts of climate change.” The PAD’s Director Wilfred Topno appealed the world community to unite and work together to restrict global warming.
Later in the evening, a Webinar was held on the environmental issues among the staffs of PAD and NEADS. Tirtha Prasad Saikia, Joint Director of NEADS elaborately told about causes behind the alarming rate of environmental degradation on earth. He basically emphasised on the excessive use of fossil fuels, deforestation and other. Citing various scientific studies on climate change, Monoj Gogoi, the Documentation and Advocacy Manager in the PAD’s project, delineated the impacts of climate change and affecting people in various parts of the world. He told, “We are heading towards the tipping point fast, let’s work for the environment urgently”. In his concluding speech, the moderator of the webinar Wilfred Topno humbly requested and encouraged the participants to work for the great cause before it reached the irreversible stage.

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