Interactive meeting on Strengthening State Strategies on Climate Actions in Sikkim held

Gangtok, 09 May [IPR]

An interactive meeting was held on 9th May, 2018 at ChintanBhawan, on the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) – Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) project “Strengthening State Strategies on Climate Actions in Sikkim”, under the chairmanship of the Chief Secretary, Government of Sikkim, Dr. AlokShrivastava. The UNDP-SDC project was conceptualised with the Ministry of Environment Forests and Climate Change (MOEFCC), Government of India and the Department of Science, Technology and Climate Change (DSTCC) is the State Nodal Agency for implementing the project.

Sikkim being a mountainous state is especially vulnerable to climate change and the primary objective of the project is to create a replicable and scalable model for the implementation of the State Action Plan on Climate Change (SAPCC) at the state level. The three sectors prioritised for the state of Sikkim are forests, disaster management and water.

Prioritised activities being implemented under the forest sector are invasive species mapping, forest fire susceptibility and risk mapping, and development and conservation of forest corridors by the Forest Environment Wildlife Management Department (FEWMD). Prioritised activities in the water sector are being implemented collaboratively by two departments namely, rainwater harvesting for drinking water and mapping of wetlands in Sikkim by DSTCC and implementation of DharaVikash program, GIS mapping of spring water sources and intensive intervention model for revival of critical springs at GPU level by Rural Management and Development Department (RMDD). Prioritised activities in the disaster management sector are Hazards, Risks and Vulnerability Assessment of 3 towns in Sikkim, strengthening community disaster preparedness and climate resilience in 16 GPUs and pilot project on Glacial Lake Outburst Floods (GLOFs) in South Lhonak Lake are being undertaken by the Land Revenue and Disaster Management Department.

Ms.MarylaureCrettaz, Director, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, informed about the similarities between the small mountain country of Switzerland and mountain state of Sikkim. She appreciated the project initiatives taken up by the Government of Sikkim and stressed the importance of integrating data from different sources and also suggested the involvement of private sector in climate change activities in Sikkim. Dr. PreetiSoni, Assistant Country Director, UNDP-India complimented the ownership displayed by the Government of Sikkim and inter-departmental way of collaborating on climate change activities. She stressed the importance of documentation of project and offered innovative solutions for dissemination of knowledge to various stakeholders. She also assured UNDP-India’s support in the revision of the Sikkim SAPCC and in identifying collaborative finance mechanisms.

Chief Secretary, Dr. AlokSrivastava on behalf of the government of Sikkim thanked SDC and UNDP for supporting the state of Sikkim. He also appreciated the Principal Secretary, DSTCC, Dr. K. Jayakumar, PCCF-cum-Principal Secretary, FEWMD, Dr. Thomas Chandy and State Relief Commissioner-cum-Secretary, LRDM, ShriTsegyalTashi, who were present during the meeting, in successfully implementing various climate change activities in the state.

The programme was moderated by the Additional Director cum Nodal Officer of the DST&CC Shri D. G. Shrestha while the vote of thanks was proposed by the UNDP State Project Manager Dr. SurajitBaruah.