Nepal wants to play a proactive role in protecting biodiversity and mitigating the negative impact of climate change, President Bidya Devi Bhandari said today.
"The whole world is concerned about the biodiversity loss and looming threats of climate change. Despite resource constraints and globalized nature of climate change impact, Nepal has accorded top priority to address these concerns," said Bhandari at the inauguration of the International Conference on Biodiversity, Climate Change Assessment and Impacts on Livelihood, here.
Bhandari said while Nepal's contributions to global warming are "negligible", it is compelled to face the brunt of the negative impact of climate change.
"..In the form of ice-melting and threats of glacial lake outburst floods, deforestation, denudation and desertification, loss of precious flora and fauna, drought, landslide and depletion of sources of water, habitat loss and impact on productivity of soil, and consequent migration of people," she said.
Bhandari said Nepal represents "biodiversity in a miniature form", alluring to its diversity comprising mountains, valleys and flatlands ranging from the highest point of the world in the Himalayas in the north to plain areas in the southern Tarai with exquisite flora and fauna.
"Biodiversity is vital for human survival and livelihood," she said, adding, in recent years climate change and global warming have emerged as serious challenges threatening biodiversity and disturbing livelihood of common masses.
Minister for Population and Environment Jayadev Joshi said developing countries like Nepal have been the "worst-affected" by the negative impact of climate change which has caused a serious threat to the livelihood.
"The government has formulated and implemented adaptation policy for combating the negative consequences of climate change," he said and stressed on the need of implementing environment-friendly development policy and conducting public awareness programmes at local level for biodiversity protection.
Various other dignitaries spoke about the significance of the conference, saying it would provide the platform for exchange of ideas and experiences in biodiversity conservation and combating climate change throughout the world.
The three-day international conference is being jointly organised by the Ministries of Science and Technology, Population and Environment, Agricultural Development and Forest and Soil Conservation, TU Central Department of Botany, the Agriculture and Forestry University.
During the conference, around 400 scientists, researchers, professors, environmentalists and conservationists from more than 20 countries including Nepal,India, China and Pakistan will deliberate on biodiversity issues, climate change and colonising species of plants as well as environmental and mountain problems.
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