SEMINAR ON GLOBAL WARMING:

Global warming is one of the biggest challenges we have been facing in recent times. The Earth and the Nature are the ones enabling us to survive till now. The nature may survive without us but we can never survive without nature. Thus, it is our sole responsibility to come together and save the environment that has been sustaining us so far and also to ensure that it still exists for the future generations

All countries; developed and developing have been facing the effect of global warming and Nepal, being a country of the Himalayas is no exception. There have been instances of high intensity rainfall during rainy season resulting in heavy floods, landslides and soil erosion. Droughts during the dry season have also affected forests, water resources, agriculture, human health and biodiversity in Nepal. Glacial lake outburst floods have been recorded and deemed as potentially dangerous which are considered to be the result of melting icecaps due to warm temperature. We have to take adequate steps to find out ways to control this phenomenon from our side and the first step to doing that is creating awareness among the people and responsibility towards the environment.

Considering the effect that global warming has on our environment and to contribute towards awareness relating to it, Human Action for Peace, Prosperity and Sustainable Development (HAPPS), a non-profit organization working in the field of education, awareness and skills development (issues directly or indirectly associated with Peace, Prosperity and Sustainability), organized a seminar on Global Warming on 29th December 2014 at Local Development Training Academy (LDTA), Lalitpur, Nepal.Hon. Former Finance Minister and CA member Surendra Pandey was the chief guest of the program. Four Key note speakers Mr. Mausam Khanal (Executive Director of Nepal River Conversation Trust), Mrs. Luna Khatiwada (Senior Program officer of Federation of Drinking water and Sanitation User’s Nepal), Mr. Sahaj Man Shrestha(President- Nepal’s Forum of Environmental Journalists) and Mr. Jailab Rai (Teaching faculty- Central Dept. TU Anthropology/Sociology) were the key note speakers. Along with more than 100 young participants, adviser of NRNA UK Sushma Rai, social workers- Surya Chand, Sita Kunwar, environmental expert- Anil Shankar Giri were present in the program.

1.      INTRODUCTION

Global warming is the gradual increase in the average temperature of the Earth’s atmosphere. Scientists believe that global warming is primarily a problem of too much carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere—which acts as a blanket, trapping heat and warming the planet, which would ultimately result in serious environmental effects. Climate change has been clearly noticed in many parts of the world with changing weather and rainfall patterns as well as rising sea levels. We humans and our lifestyle are considered to be the sole cause of increasing global warming. 

Increase in the greenhouse gases that are produced by burning fossil fuel and deforestation can be considered as one of the major intensifying factors for global warming. Burning of fossil fuels releases potent gases such as methane and nitrous oxide, which aggravate the problem as well as cutting down of trees decreases the efficiency by which carbon dioxide is stored and oxygen released by them resulting in increased concentration of carbon dioxide that leads to increased greenhouse effect.Climate change can also be seen as one of the major effect of global warming. Over the last century, global average temperature has increased by more than 1°F (0.7°C). The 2001-2010 decade is the warmest since 1880—the earliest year for which comprehensive global temperature records were available. In fact, nine of the warmest years on record have occurred in just the last 10 years. This warming has been accompanied by a decrease in very cold days and nights and an increase in extremely hot days and warm nights. A warming world also has the potential to change rainfall and snow patterns, increase droughts and severe storms, melt glaciers, increase sea levels, and change plant and animal habitats.

1.1 Global warming and its effect in Nepal

All countries; developed and developing have been facing the effect of global warming and Nepal, being a country of the Himalayas is no exception. There have been instances of high intensity rainfall during rainy season resulting in heavy floods, landslides and soil erosion. Droughts during the dry season have also affected forests, water resources, agriculture, human health and biodiversity in Nepal. Glacial lake outburst floods have been recorded and deemed as potentially dangerous which are considered to be the result of melting icecaps due to warm temperature. We have to take adequate steps to find out ways to control this phenomenon from our side and the first step to doing that is creating awareness among the people and responsibility towards the environment.

2 2.     OVERVIEWS FROM THE SEMINAR

The seminar organized by Human Action for Peace, Prosperity and Sustainable Development (HAPPS), a non-profit organization working in the field of education, youth empowerment, youth issues, and environment, had Hon. Former Finance Minister and CA member Surendra Pandey was the chief guest of the program. Mr. Mausam Khanal (Executive Director of Nepal River Conversation Trust), Mrs. Luna Khatiwada (Senior Program officer of Federation of Drinking water and Sanitation User’s Nepal), Mr. Sahaj Man Shrestha (President- Nepal’s Forum of Environmental Journalists) and Mr. Jailab Rai (Teaching faculty- Central Dept. TU Anthropology/Sociology) were the key note speakers, sharing their expertise regarding the topic. The seminar had more than 100 young participants from different colleges.


2   2.1  Key Note Speakers of the Seminar
2.1.1        Mr. Mausam Khanal – Executive Director,Nepal River Conversation Trust

His presentation involved detailed explanation of the greenhouse effect and how increase in the magnitude of greenhouse effect leads to global warming, since many people consider greenhouse effect and global warming to be same. He also shed light on how the consumption habits of people are leading to the high emission of carbon dioxide gas and other greenhouse gas to the atmosphere which has led to increased global temperature, melting of ice caps and change in the weather creating disbalance in the entire ecosystem. The presentation also included ways that people can work together to prevent global warming and he discussed on how we all as individuals can contribute towards the conservation and preservation of the environment.

2.1.2        Mrs. Luna Khatiwada- Senior Program Officer, Federation of Drinking water and Sanitation User’s Nepal

The presentation was mainly focused on climate change, its impact and adaptation. It included past data on global temperature and how climate change will continue to impact the entire earth. The presentation stressed out the adverse condition relating to food security, agriculture and the biodiversity and environment if necessary steps are not undertaken. Another topic that she focused more was that the effect of climate change is faced by everyone differently; there may be one group more vulnerable than the other which depends on both individual and social factors. She also shared data on “Climate Change and Vulnerability Mapping for Nepal” conducted by the Government of Nepal and the activities conducted by National Adaptation Programme of Action (NAPA).


2.1.3        Mr. Sahaj Man Shrestha- President, Nepal’s Forum of Environmental Journalists

His presentation mainly included how the forum of environmental journalists have been working together mainly to create awareness on the issue of global warming, environmental conservation and sustainable development.  He shared his valuable experience and what he saw while travelling to different parts of Nepal in the course of his work.

2.1.4        Mr. Jailab Rai- Teaching faculty,Central Dept. TU Anthropology/Sociology

The presentation involved him sharing his knowledge on the human activities in the past and present and how society as a whole affects the way people act and behave. He also explained on how people understand the world around them and how they respond to changes in the environment (in relation to global warming) and also stressed out on how society plays a major role in taking decisive actions relating to conservation and preservation efforts.

3 3.  PROPOSED ACTION
The main purpose of the seminar was to create awareness among the youths about the effect global warming has on the environment and how we as youths can contribute and work towards creating a more sustainable environment. All the speakers of the seminar stressed out on how we all on an individual level can contribute towards our environment and not rely on certain groups to conduct conservation and awareness activities. The first step to it is to create a network of youths, who can and are committed towards educating the society around them and then empower them to take leadership roles in the activities conducted.

44. CONCLUSION
The seminar, which was mainly youth focused, had the objective of disseminating information on global warming. The speakers of the seminar, who were working from different sectors highly motivated youths by sharing their experience and knowledge regarding the topic. This also helped to clear out many misconception people have regarding the environment and also made us more aware on how serious the issue of global warming is and that if we do not take necessary action, it will hamper us in the long run. The seminar concluded with the youths sharing their views on what they learnt from the speakers and how they will work with their own respective circles on creating a positive impact on the conservation of the environment.

Seminar on News:
DCnepal:  http://dcnepal.com/news/news.php?nid=137774

CNNEnews:  http://cnnenews.com/index.php?action=news&id=15242#.VKIYnsAA

Rescue News Online:  http://www.rescuenewsonline.com/?p=2759

Some Photos:

Posted: 13th January 2016 by HAPPS

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