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दलहन की फसलों के लिए इस साल का यह मौसम कुछ ठीक रहा है। अरहर की फसलों पर कम बारिश के कारण नकारात्मक प्रभाव कम पड़ा। फिर भी उसके फूलने के समय यानि, जनवरी महीने में सामान्य से अधिक ठंड के कारण फूल लगने में व्यवधान पैदा हुआ है।


Government’s Policy on Climate Change

Minister of Disaster Management Mahinda Amaraweera told the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation that meteorological department has been equipped with state of art infrastructure to provide precise forecasts and minimize possible damages cause by extreme weather conditions. He also noted that government’s policy is to identify adverse impacts of climate change in advance and cushioning them up to minimize damage caused to the public. The minister stated that farmers who were hit by recent flooding are being paid compensations.  News Story Carried in the Main News Bulletin of the SLBC (2.17 min of the clip)

Chemical Fertilizer and Global Warming

Senior Lecturer of the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, the University of Sabaragamuwa Dr. I.P Yapa explains that using chemical fertilizer in farming triggers climatic changes. He added that chemical fertilizer like urea activates with microbes and would emit green house gases. He also noted that chemical fertilizer industry is one of main culprits causing global warming. Teams under the guidance of Dr. Yapa have successfully carried out organic farming projects countrywide. Meanwhile, Secretary to the Ministry of Environment B.M.U.B Basnayake highlighted final touches are being given on the committee report that inquires the impacts of pesticides and arsenic on farmer community in the North-Central province.  News Story Carried in the Main News Bulletin of the SLBC (4.04 min of the clip)

Places Prone to be Affected by Climate Change in Sri Lanka

Dr. Punyawardena, expert in climate change issues in Sri Lanka, told the SLBC that the Northern, North Central and Hambanthota and Rathnapura districts are prone to be badly affected by climate change. He added that it is a crosscutting issue and has deep implications on many fronts including country’s economy. An expert panel representing various sectors is working on preparing compressive plan to tackle bad effects of climate change.  Vice-chairman of the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change , co-laureate Nobel Peace Prize 2007 , Sri Lankan Professor  Mohan Munasinghe, once noted that northern part of Sri Lanka where Tamil rebels and government troops were fighting due to be submerged as sea-levels rise.  News Story Carried in the Main News Bulletin of the SLBC (3.55 min of the clip)

National Climate Adaptation Plan

Sri Lanka is currently preparing a national climate adaptation plan. The initiative has been entrusted to the Climate Change Secretariat under the purview of Ministry of Environment.  International organization including UNEP, UNDP and ADB are assisting the project. Director of the Climate Change Secretariat Dr. Sunimal Jayathunga told the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation that sectors such as agriculture, health, etc., are threatened by climate change.  News Story Carried in the Main News Bulletin of the SLBC (5.19 min of the clip)

Drought and Salt Tolerant Rice Varieties

The Industrial Technology Institute has initiated a programme to develop drought tolerant and salt tolerant verities of rice to cope up with effects of climate change. CEO of the ITI Dr. Aziz Mubarak told the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation that the programme is carried out with the support of Ministry of Technology and Researches and will be introduced the farmers.

News Story Carried in the Main News Bulletin of the SLBC ( 4.06 min of the clip)

50 per cent of Wetlands lost globally in last one century: UN


HYDERABAD (INDIA), Oct 17: The most important Ecosystem in the Earth- the Wetlands, are depleting so rapidly that half of them have disappeared from the earth in last one century, according to the United Nations report launched today in Hyderabad, India.

“In last one century, the world lost an estimated 50 per cent of its wetlands, while recent coastal wetland loss in some places, notably East Asia, has been up to 1.6 per cent a year,” said the report ´The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity for Water and Wetlands´

The Ramsar Convention defines wetlands as areas of marsh, fen, peatland or water, whether natural or artificial, permanent or temporary, with water that is static or flowing, fresh, brackish or salt, including areas of marine water, the depth of which at low tide does not exceed six meters.

The wetlands were lost mainly due to factors such as intensive agricultural production, unsustainable water extraction for domestic and industrial use, urbanization, infrastructure development and pollution, the report said.

Nepal boasts of nine wetlands of international importance recognized by Ramsar Convention and is also the signatory of the convention. “Countries like Nepal which is poor may have to face more threats as the urbanisation is rapid and the country has other more pressing priorities,” Nick Davidson, Deputy Secretary General of Ramsar Convention Secretariat told Republica.

But experts said governments all over the world were slowly giving recognition to wetlands and their importance which is appreciable. “It´s not enough. The key role that rapidly diminishing wetlands play in supporting human life and biodiversity needs to be recognized more and integrated into decision making as a vital component of the transition to a resource efficient, sustainable world economy,” added Davidson.

According to the report, water security is widely regarded as one of the key natural resource challenges currently facing the world, and human drivers of ecosystem change including destructive extractive industries, unsustainable agriculture and poorly managed urban expansion are posing threat to global freshwater biodiversity and water security for eighty percent of the world´s population.

“Policies and decisions often do not take into account the many services that wetlands provide-thus leading to the rapid degradation and loss of wetlands globally, said UN Under-Secretary General and UN Environment Programme Executive Director, Achim Steiner.

According to the Ramsar Convention, Inland wetlands cover at least 9.5 million square kilometers (about 6.5 per cent of the Earths land surface). “If we undervalue wetlands in our decisions for economic growth, we do at our increasing peril for people´s livelihoods and the world´s economies, added Davidson.

Published on 2012-10-17 05:40:02

Developed countries to double funding on biodiversity conservation


HYDERABAD (India), Oct 21: The developed countries of the world have agreed to double the funding to reduce biodiversity loss in the developing countries by 50 percent.

At the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (UNCBD) held in Hyderabad, the developing countries had stressed the need for adequate funding to take urgent actions to reduce the rapid loss of biodiversity. Around 150 countries participated in the two-week long convention that concluded Saturday.

The developed countries agreed to double the funding to support efforts in developing countries toward meeting the internationally agreed biodiversity targets and the main goals of the strategic plan for biodiversity 2011-2020 was agreed two years ago during the meeting Japan.

According to the secretariat of the convention, the developed countries using a baseline figure of the average annual national spending on biodiversity between 2006 and 2010, would double biodiversity- related international financial flows by 2015.

The developing and least developed countries have long been demanding more investments from developed countries on saving the planet´s biodiversity as the rapid and rampant developmental works and population growth has threatened life of many flora and fauna in terrestrial ecosystems and aquatic lives in marine ecosystem.

“These results, coming in a period of economic crisis, demonstrate that the world is committed to implementing the convention on biodiversity. We see that governments are moving forward in the implementation and seeing biodiversity as an opportunity to be realized more than a problem to be solved,” said Executive Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias.

The Hyderabad meeting which is the eleventh meeting of the countries has also set targets to increase the number of countries that have included biodiversity in their development plans.

For the first time, developing countries including India and several African states pledged additional funds above and beyond their core funding for conservation of bio-diversity.

The Global Environment Facility, the financial mechanism of the convention, for the first time, was provided with an assessment of the financial resources required to meet the needs of developing countries for implementing the convention.

“The present economic crisis should not deter us, but on the contrary encourage us to invest more towards amelioration of the natural capital for ensuring uninterrupted ecosystem services, on which all life on earth depends,” said Jayanthi Natarajan, minister for Environment and Forests, India.

The meeting adopted recommendations for improving the sustainable use and management of species hunted for ´bushmeat´ in the tropical and sub -tropical regions, where large-scale hunting and trade of animals has led to empty forest syndrome.

“Mobilizing the necessary financial resources from the public and private sector needed to ensure achievement of the 2020 targets remains a challenge — but here in India, many nations including developing economies have signaled their determination and sense of urgency to seize the opportunities by providing much needed additional support,” said Achim Steiner, Executive Director, United Nations Environment Programme.

Two years ago the tenth meeting of the countries in Japan had agreed to implement strategic plan(2011-2020) which among many other points said that the rate of loss of all natural habitats including forests, would at least be halved and where feasible brought close to zero and as well as significantly reduce degradation and fragmentation by 2020.

Likewise, the strategic plan had also agreed to establish a conservation target of 17 per cent of terrestrial and inland water resources and 10 per cent of marine and coastal areas whereas restore at least 15 per cent of degraded areas through conservation and restoration activities globally.

Published on 2012-10-21 07:00:59