CEE Himalaya and RCE Srinagar celebrate WED across the Himalaya region

This year's World Environment Day's theme was ¨Illegal Wildlife Trade¨,a topic which is of great importance in the Himalaya region. WED2016 was used as an occasion to organize an array of successful events across the Himalayas.  The vast demand for products such as wool, fur, leather, and medicines is driving illegal wildlife trade of the already under-threat species of Tiger, Red Panda, Asian Elephant, Greater one-horned Rhinocerus, and the Snow Leopard.

Celebrating WED, the Centre for Environment and Education (CEE Himalaya) and RCE Srinagar organised, together with other NGOs, events across the Indian Himalayas. In Western Himalaya the event focussed on Lake Wular, where more than 8,000 fishermen earn their livelihood and many locals harvest plants and hunt birds. In the central region CEE collaborated with the JSW Foundation on events surrounding forest fires, responsible household consumption, and local conservation efforts. The participants planted saplings of traditional trees to commemorate the Day.

In Eastern Himalaya secondary schools were chosen to participate in two-day activities such as planting, songs on endemic species, crafting from waste materials, and greening of the school grounds, among other. Other activities included seminars for high school students on threatened species, discussions of potential ECO clubs in different schools, cultural programmes and awards with science book sets as prizes. Finally, a drawing competition with students from nursery to level 12 was also organised in Tripura. Overall it was a concerted effort, with many different localities involved touching on different issues related to the environment.