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Role of wetlands as part of ecology underscored



Subhash Chandra, PCCF, department of forest has highlighted the importance of wetlands as regards the ecology, the society, historic perspective and the spiritual connect.

Goa State Wetland Authority (GSWA) with the support of Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC), Department of Environment, Goa and Goa State Biodiversity Board (GSBB) celebrated the World Wetlands Day 2020 (WWD 2020) at Dona Paula recently.

The function was inaugurated by lighting of the traditional lamp by chief guest Subhash Chandra, guests of honour Santosh Kumar, APCCF and chief wildlife warden, department of forest, Johnson Fernandes, director (Environment), Member Secretary, GSWA, Dr Sanil Kumar, senior scientist, CSIR-NIO, Dr Pradip Sarmokadam, member secretary, GSBB, head of nodal agency, GSWA and Dr Pramod Salaskar (resource person).

The brochure of the WWD 2020 was unveiled by the dignitaries followed by awarding Wetland Mitra cards to the very first three wetland Mitras for Bondvol lake.

Dr Sanil Kumar, senior scientist, CSIR-NIO, in his speech, assured the support from NIO and his technical team that they will consult the local communities during the preparation of brief document and identification of wetlands in the state. Santosh Kumar, APCCF and chief wildlife warden informed about the initiatives taken by the forest department on protection and conservation of the environment, Jal Shakti Abhiyan and other schemes available with the department.

Johnson Fernandes, director (environment) and Member Secretary, GSWA said that efforts will be made by the government so that the BMCs receive financial support and assistance for conducting consultative meetings for the pre-existing rights and privileges and also in conducting wetland-related activities.

Resource person Dr Pramod Salaskar (eminent limnologist and environment activist – Powai, Mumbai) delivered a lecture on reclamation of Powai lake, Mumbai, followed by presentation of a case study on Bondvol lake by Bondvol Mitra, Elsa Fernandes and BMC chairperson of Calapor, Arturo D’Souza.

Dr Mandar Nanjkar, scientist, CSIR-NIO, gave an update on the status of ongoing wetland identification project. The technical session was followed by a talk by Mahesh Shilkar on success story of restoration of a water body from Verem, Vangurla. Submission date for various competitions held on WWD 2020 has been extended till February 29.

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