Monday, May 27, 2024

Forest Department holds stakeholders’ meeting on nature and eco clubs

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In order to increase public participation in greening and enhancing biodiversity conservation in the city of Visakhapatnam, the Forest department held a meeting with nature enthusiasts, NGOs, civil society groups, and volunteers for developing a framework for setting up Nature/Eco clubs. These will be set up across the district with the objective of documenting and conserving the biodiversity with the active involvement of the public, said Anant Shankar, DFO Visakhapatnam, and Curator, IGZP.

The forest department will help provide infrastructural facilities across the city for such clubs. Emphasis will be laid on developing People’s Biodiversity Registers (PBRs) with the local urban bodies. Such eco clubs will play a very important role in protecting the environment and biodiversity in the urban surroundings. DFO said that people can contribute as per their interests like photography, conservation of butterflies, the study of different types of birds, conservation of plants and trees, wetlands, etc through these eco clubs.

He said that every program organized by Eco Clubs will be documented in the form of videos and photos. Curator, IGZP discussed the issues facing biodiversity in society at present and how they can be solved through these Eco Clubs. We will start these eco clubs soon after considering the opinions and suggestions given by various NGOs, the curator added. Time-specific deadlines will be set up. The focus will be on involving the schools and educational institutions, corporate sector, societies, Resident Welfare Associations, Navy, Railways, Doctor’s associations, etc.

A public movement will be initiated. The Forest department will also organise nature walks, marine exploration trips, and trekking in pristine forest areas through such eco clubs. Further, this initiative will also help converge, channel, and bring together the initiatives of various individuals, NGOs, groups together and make them more effective to make Visakhapatnam a paradise for nature conservation. Workshops, training, guided tours, and expert talks for the participants will also be undertaken. Clubs will be organised so that the entire Visakhapatnam district is covered. A mobile-based application for creating a platform for such participation has also been discussed.

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