Madhya Pradesh villagers being cautioned on climate change


Bhopal : With the the global Copenhagen climate change summit just three weeks away, grassroots efforts are on to raise awareness among Madhya Pradesh tribals about the impact of climate change on rural livelihoods.

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“Special working groups of livelihoods promoters are being formed in 3,000 tribal villages, under the Madhya Pradesh Rural Livelihoods Project (MPRLP), to caution gram sabhas about the harmful impact of climate change on rural livelihoods,” MPRLP project coordinator L.M. Belwal told IANS here Monday.

The project has encouraged community-based interventions like the development of watersheds, plantations, installation of biogas plants and organic farming that can keep away the harmful effect of climate change.

“These working groups of livelihoods promoters, being formed to caution the gram sabhas about the harmful impact of climate change on rural livelihoods, would discuss at gram sabha meetings how natural resources can be better managed to avert the adverse impact of climate change,” said Belwal.

A strategy was finalised a during a district level meet of livelihoods promoters in Jhabua. Participants included those from Aalirajpur, Mandla, Dindori, Anuppur, Shahdol and Sheopur — all tribal-dominated districts.

The Jhabua meet of livelihood promoters discussed what is climate change, how greenhouse gases work, what is global warming, why glaciers are melting and how natural resource-based livelihoods are getting affected.

“MPRLP, financially aided by the Department For International Development (DFID), UK, which is working through the gram sabha model for sustainable livelihoods of the rural poor, works to eliminate rural poverty by empowering rural households, mainly in nine tribal districts of the state.

“It (MPRLP) takes a bottom-up approach, facilitating, inspiring and guiding community-driven collective and individual action to reduce poverty through gram sabha (village assemblies),” said Belwal.

India will be among 190-odd countries taking part in the Dec 7-18 UN Framework Convention on Climate Change summit in Copenhagen.