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  • September 6, 2018

  • Seminars

  • K K Birla Goa Campus, Director's Conference Room

  • Offline

  • Humanities and Social Sciences

Climate Resilience Planning in the Forest Sector in Meghalaya

Abstract: Meghalaya is a forest rich state and forms part of the Indo-Myanmar global biodiversity hotspot. Forests in Meghalaya are currently experiencing a variety of stresses, including both anthropogenic and natural. Dr. Rajiv Kumar Chaturvedi will speak about a recent project which aimed to create datasets and a conceptual framework for resilience planning for the forests in the state. Following the Climate Risk Assessment Framework from IPCC (2014), ‘vulnerability’ was used as a lever to conceptualise ‘climate resilience’. Bio-physical vulnerability of the forests in the state is assessed based on satellite datasets for the last 16 years (2000-2016) and one-time collection of field based measurements from 180 plots across the state. While integration of socio-economic vulnerability is not yet achieved, we aim to do this in future. This study finds that the current vulnerabilities of the forest systems in Meghalaya arise from forest disturbances, fragmentation, patchiness, low biodiversity, and precarious mountain slopes. This study further finds that the fragmented and isolated forests in low biodiversity areas are especially vulnerable to the impacts of climate change as well. Thus we argue that strengthening the structure and composition of forests, and augmenting the biodiversity, will not only manage current vulnerabilities and weaknesses of the forest systems in the state but at the same time will also make the forests more resilient to future climatic shocks.