TODAY -

Abandoning false solutions to climate changes suggested
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, November 10 2014: Expressing concern over the worsening climate changes in Manipur resulting in frequent flood, drought, loss of species and impact on indigenous peoples' cultures, traditions and their survival, a State level convention on climate change, false solutions and indigenous peoples' rights in Manipur held today at Manipur Press Club resolved that climate crisis cannot be resolved within the framework of "market solutions" while calling for States to abandon all false solutions to climate changes that negate indigenous peoples' rights.

The convention was organised by Centre for Research and Advocacy, Manipur.

Phulindro Konsam, chairman, Committee on Human Rights; secretary of All Loktak Lake Area Fishermen's Union, Oinam Rajen; senior environmentalist Dr RK Ranjan, president of AMUCO Mani Khuman, organising secretary of Irabot Foundation, Manipur, Gopen, victim of Lamphel Yaipha Leikai eviction, Maibam Nganbileima and RIMS road victim N Ibochouba were the resource persons of the programme.

Delivering the keynote address, Jiten Yumnam, secretary, Centre for Research and Advocacy, Manipur highlighted the context of deepening climate crisis in Manipur and how aggressive introduction of large scale development projects in Manipur, such as mega dams, oil exploration, creation of industrial zones and other large infrastructure projects such as Road and Railways infrastructure with financing by international financial institutions lead to violation of indigenous peoples rights in Manipur by destroying their forest, water and land.

The participants expressed concern over aggressive pursuance of development processes, especially large scale mega development processes in Manipur with serious climate change implications, like mega dams, oil exploration and drilling, etc, which destroy peoples' land, forest, wetlands etc.

The speakers and participants are also concerned with Government of Manipur's MoUs with corporate bodies for mega dams and to drill oil and gas in Manipur.

The convention underlined that the colossal forest area submergence of these mega dams, including 27,000 hectares, by the planned 1500 MW Tipaimukh dam etc will aggravate climate crisis.

Expressing concern over the increased agriculture land grabbing by mega projects such as the Film Institute, Sports University, Trans Asian Highway and railway etc the convention said that loss of agriculture land will deepen climate crisis and undermine self sufficiency of food.

It also expressed concerned over increased investment of International financial institutions such as Asian Development Bank for mega infrastructure projects like Imphal Ring Road without detailed impact assessment, option assessment and consent of communities.

Concerned with the Manipur State Action Plan on Climate Change that prioritize false solutions to climate change, such as mega dams and REDD+ that will lead to negative impacts on indigenous peoples, the convention adopted a resolution that all MoUs on Mega dams be revoked and policies that facilitate such projects, viz, the Manipur Hydro Power Policy, 2012 and Manipur State Action Plan on Climate Change etc be repealed.

The National Hydro Electric Power Corporation should cease all efforts to seek carbon credits and additional profits from the Clean Development Mechanism by classifying the controversial 105 MW Loktak Project in Manipur as clean and renewable energy project, it further adopted.

The convention also expressed serious concern over alleged non recognition of indigenous peoples rights in working out appropriate solutions in really mitigating climate change and in adapting to climate crisis.

There should be moratorium on large scale destructive unsustainable development projects in Manipur, primarily mega dams' construction, oil exploration, large infrastructure projects, which will destroy the forest, wetlands, agriculture land etc and to review Mapithel dam construction.

Alternative energies, indigenous peoples' traditional knowledge and practices such as diversified agriculture; community-based adaptation etc should be promoted in Manipur.

The upcoming climate change negotiations in 20 COP at Lima Peru should ensure recognition of indigenous peoples self determined rights and development.

The emphasis accorded on private sector financing as solution to climate crisis in international climate negotiations should end, it resolved.


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