nesfas in collaboration with Synod College organized an exhibition cum presentation titled, “Conversations with the Earth: Indigenous Voices on Climate Change” on the 3rd and 4th of November 2015 at Dinam Hall, Shillong. The Chief Guest for the occasion was Mr. Aiban Swer, Director, Meghalaya Basin Development Authority. Dr. Gleb Raygorodetsky,a conservation biologist with expertise in resource co-management and traditional knowledge systems. along with Mr. Nick Lunch, an experienced participatory video facilitator, inaugurated the function. The Principal of the college, Dr. D. Wanswett felicitated the Chief guest and the speakers. Students and Teachers from various Schools and Colleges attended the exhibition. The Exhibits portrayed the stories of the unintended consequences of imposed mitigation efforts on local livelihoods, and examples of traditional knowledge and its value in developing appropriate responses to climate change.
A presentation on the exhibits was presented by Dr. Raygorodetsky. He conveyed local accounts of the impacts of climate change on indigenous communities like the Kichwa of Equador, Atlai of Russia, Gamo of Etiopia,Gwitch’in of Artic etc. He also shared his experiences while working with the Arctic people of northern Finland whose livelihoods depend largely on their environment, the Skolt Skolts, as part of an UNU-TKI project supporting a partnership between the Skolt Sámi and the Finnish Snowchange Cooperative focused on developing a climate change adaptation plan.
Dr. Gleb Raygorodetsky concluded by emphasizing that in order to overcome the various challenges that we largely created ourselves, we must all work together and come up with solutions.