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Seminar on natural resources and environment in October 2010
The most important resources affected are water, land and air. While planned development of resources brings in prosperity, the indiscriminate exploitation of nature leads to destruction of environment and degradation of resources.
SOIL, WATER and vegetation are the three basic natural resources. The survival of God’s creation depends upon them and nature has provided them as assets to human beings. The management of natural resources to meet people’s requirements has been practiced since the pre-Vedic era.
Farmers were ranked high in the social system and village management was in their hands. They gained this knowledge and developed skill through experience and learning by doing. No doubt, human life depends on natural resources, but they are also dependent on humans for their sustainability. In nature there are ways and means, which ensure a balance between the various natural resources.
However, advancement of human activities and excessive use of natural resources has created imbalance between the two. Their use / exploitation have far exceeded their natural replenishment rates. Industrialisation and various other developmental processes have added to the problem by enhancing pollution and global temperature and today the very future of mother earth is at stake.
The most important resources affected are water, land and air. While planned development of resources brings in prosperity, the indiscriminate exploitation of nature leads to destruction of environment and degradation of resources. Natural resource management specifically focuses on a scientific and technical understanding of resources and ecology and the life supporting capacity of these resources. Its emphasis on sustainability can be traced back to early attempts to understand the ecological nature of American rangelands in the late 19th century and the resource conservation movement of the same time. This type of analysis coalesced in the 20th century and took on a more holistic, national and even global form culminating in Brundtland Commission and the advocacy of sustainable development.

In India, an estimated area of 146.82 million hectare suffers from various kinds of land degradation due to water and wind erosion and other complex problems like alkalinity, salinity, water logging and soil acidity. In addition to erosion, salinity and alkalinity, our soils are losing soil carbon and micronutrients due to irrational and unbalanced fertiliser use. This must be addressed urgently since nearly two-thirds of our farmlands are in some way either degraded or sick. Droughts and floods are also a common feature in many parts of the country. A large part of the country depends on rain for agriculture. Due to heavy deforestation and denudation of soils, the rainwater received does not percolate much in many areas for replenishing the aquifers and is lost in runoff. There is also over exploitation of available ground water for agricultural and other uses. Management of natural resources is one of the most critical aspects in the economic development of any country. However, under Indian conditions, it assumes more importance, because the limited natural resources have to be judiciously used to feed the ever-increasing population. The overall objective of NRMS is to facilitate improvement in livelihoods of rural poor through sustainable management of natural resources and will take into account the four natural resources, namely, land, water, climate and forestry. The environment will be deliberated during the conference.

Guru Arjan Dev (GAD) Institute of Development Studies, Amritsar, will organise its second conference on Management of Natural Resources and Environment in the last week of October 2010. The venue of the conference will be Conference Hall of Guru Nanak Auditorium of Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar. The main theme of the conference is sustainable use of natural resources in the context of tradeoff between development and environment and climate change. Papers are invited from interested participants on any of the following sub themes of seminar.
  • Environmental policy instruments and institutions for sustainable use of natural resources: Pollution taxes and marketable permits, participatory institutions such as joint forest management and water user associations and community action for controlling industrial water pollution.
  • Environmental valuation: Case studies using stated and revealed preference methods for valuing water and forest resources. Benefit cost analysis of conservation of forests and surface and ground water sources.
  • Natural resource accounting and measurement of Green GDP: Sectoral studies related to mining, forestry and irrigation. Generalisation of national income and input-output accounts for measuring Green GDP.
  • Climate change effects, adaptation and mitigation strategies: Effects of climate change on agriculture, water supply, forestry and coastal and marine resources. Adaptation strategies for agriculture and water supply. Carbon credit and food security implications of natural resource degradation and climate change.

Keeping in view your vast expertise in the field, it will be highly appreciated if you please favour us by your valuable contribution by way of well researched paper. A copy of the paper, (both hard and soft) must reach us by the schedule dates.


Important dates:

  • Last date for abstract submission: April 30, 2010.
  • Acceptance of abstract: May 31, 2010.
  • Last date for submission of full length paper: June 30, 2010.
  • Acceptance of full length paper: July 30, 2010.
  • Tentative dates of conference: October 23 to 24, 2010.
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