It was heartening to see the climate challenged eastern states of the country – Bihar, Orrisa, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Chattisgarh and Assam – coming together on one platform and looking at the gamut of climate related issues. With intellectual and knowledge support from think tanks like Action on Climate Today and Asian Development Research Institute, the conclave had an exceptional battery of experts deliberating firm and actionable climate centric issues. With active participation from the Chief Minister and Deputy Chief Minister of Bihar and the presence of the Environment Minister of India, the conclave had the highest level of commitment from the political leadership.
The key points emerging from the conclave included the need to stick to commitments, collaborate and take collective action on building a climate resilient India. Scholars came up with many policy recommendations such as cohesive working of departments to make projects climate proof, push CSR funding into climate resilience projects, better plans on water management and overall more aggressive action.
Closer home, the conclave spurred the thought that it was time for the Himalayan states to come together to deliberate similar issues. We earnestly hope that the leadership in the mountain states will be looking at development, climate and environmental issues from one single, mountain perspective. This will help them make a forceful and combined pitch for a resilient, sustainable Himalayan future.