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Programme to promote climate change reporting in North East

 Source: The Sangai Express

Ukhrul, November 30 2016: With a view to promote accurate reporting of climate change and adaptation measures in the Indian Himalayas, Indian Himalayas Climate Adaptation Programme (IHCAP) of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), Department of Science and Technology, Government of India and the Centre for Media Studies (CMS) have announced a series of media engagement workshops in the North East region.

The programme will be formally launched by Governor Dr Najma Heptulla on December 3.Environment Minister Irengbam Hemochan dra will be delivering a keynote address.

The series of programmes also include media workshops in all the Himalayan States over the next three years.

Under this media engagement programme, fellowships will also be awarded for journalists from the region to write field-based stories.

Best stories written by State-level journalists will be awarded at the end of the programme.

The overall objective of the programme is to trigger interest in climate change, its impacts on sustainability, livelihood issues and adaptation stories among journalists, editors and media houses in the region and thereby among the masses.

The Indian Himalayan Region is one of the most vulnerable mountain systems in the world.

If effective measures are taken on time, experts believe it may be possible to prevent further degradation of the ecosystem.

Climate change directly affects vital economic sectors and livelihoods of the communities in the Himalayas.

Informed media has an important role to play for spreading awareness and stimulating action on climate change adaptation and mitigation.

"We hope that the media workshops will trigger more reporting on climate change issues in the Himalayan region by journalists," said Janine Kuriger, Director of Cooperation, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation.

Senior thematic experts, scientists and policymakers will also participate in these workshops and interact with journalists.

Each workshop will include a field trip to facilitate ground-level coverage on climate change adaptation.

"The real challenge of climate change reporting is to identify changes occurring in ecologically sensitive zones areas and writing about how these changes are affecting communities and their livelihoods.

We are trying to build this capacity among interested journalists," said PN Vasanti, Director General, CMS, New Delhi.

The media workshops will be held in Sikkim, West Bengal, Meghalaya, Assam, Tripura, Mizoram, Nagaland, Manipur, Jammu and Kashmir, Arunachal Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh.

Indian Himalayas Climate Adaptation Programme (IHCAP) is a project under Global Programme Climate Change (GPCC) of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).

In India it is anchored under the Framework of Science and Technology Agreement of November 2003 between the Swiss Federal Council and the Government of India and is being implemented as a bilateral cooperation programme with Department of Science and Technology.

IHCAP builds on capacity and knowledge enhancement related to three pillars- increasing knowledge on impacts of and vulnerability to climate change of the Himalayan socio-ecological system; enhancing capacities of academic and public institutions to address climate change; creating awareness, informing stakeholders and disseminating knowledge in the Indian Himalayan Region, Hindu Kush Himalayas and beyond.

While CMS is a not-for-profit, multi-disciplinary development research and facilitative think-tank.

It endeavours to work towards responsive governance and equitable development through research, advocacy and capacity building in social development, environ ment, communication, media, transparency and governance issues at local and national policy levels.

Its flagship programme in environment sector is Vatavaran, a leading international festival of environmental films.