Environmental Friendly Innovations to Promote Biodiversity

Flood affected forests site visit

Flood affected forests site visit

Pakistan is listed among countries extremely vulnerable to the adverse impacts of climate change due to its diverse topographic and demographic settings. The country is vulnerable to a host of natural hazards particularly of forester hydro-meteorological nature, the frequency and intensity of which has increased due to climate change.

I observed the recurring extreme events, including flash floods, cyclones, heat waves, droughts, glacial lake outburst floods and intrusion of deforestation, that Pakistan has faced in the recent years carried significant climate change footprints although, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are low compared to international standards.

These cover actions to address issues in various sectors such as water, agriculture, forestry, coastal areas, biodiversity, health and other vulnerable ecosystems. Climate change will likely alter the frequency and intensity of forest disturbances, including wildfires, storms, insect outbreaks, and the occurrence of invasive species.

The productivity of forests could be affected by changes in temperature, precipitation and the amount of carbon dioxide in the air. Climate change will likely worsen the problems already faced by forests from land development and air pollution.

Despite having a protected status, the Kakad Wari Forest is being severely damaged and degraded by the extraction of resources by natural disasters and locals. The average elevation of Kakad Wari forest, Upper Dir, is 1393 m and project site is situated in the northern part of Pakistan and famous for moist temperate forest and wildlife species in all over the world.

It is home to an immense variety of unique and threatened animals and plants (WWF-Pak, 2010). Plant species are mainly in the forest are Cedrus deodara (Deodar, diar), Pinus wallichiana, Abies pindrow (fir), Picea smithiana (spruce). More than 530 families are living in scattered forest area of Kakad Wari and their total population was 8793 (National Report 2013-14).

Community 100 % dependent on forest plants to cook their daily food and forest plant population has decreased by almost 53% since being established in 1954. Most households cook there food with wood on a traditional hearth comprised of three-stones an inefficient method that wastes a great deal of wood and energy with unburned dangerous smoke.

Women’s bags charcoal made from forest wood for winter season, which is used for cooking fuel in winter season resulting half burn fire and polluting air with heavy charcoal smoke. Households in the target area use a traditional three-stone fireplace for cooking and women spend an average of 15 hours per week collecting fuel wood from Kakad Wari forest for home use. Women are more deliberately considered to reducing emission from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+) and development projects, the significant potential of fuel efficient stoves for improving their lives and reducing deforestation. As forest reduce or become degraded, women and children spending most of time in collecting firewood, leaving little time for other activities as study for girls.

Firewood is one of the key energy sources in this area that’s why people rely on to cook their meals, heat their water. Due to high elevation (5500-8500 ft) air pressure (O2) is low and need more firewood energy for longer period of time to cook food. Maximum plant wood is utilizing in process of food preparation and that firewood also causing deforestation in Kakad Wari forest and producing more carbon dioxide gas, causing dangerous diseases are also reported in targeted community.

The destruction of forests for firewood, harmful emissions from inefficient biomass cooking lead to an array of upper respiratory complications, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, cancer of the nasopharynx and larynx tuberculosis, low birth weight and eye diseases such as cataract and even blindness result from constant exposure to biomass fumes (Ref. FAO 2014).
Firewood and charcoal which comes from cutting down forest trees brings with it major environmental consequences. Decades of deforestation have left forest with less than 37% of its original forest cover and has led to soil erosion and severe flooding.

Continuously, cutting of tree forced wildlife species for migration to other areas like nearby populated locality which found very unsafe for animals. Biodiversity of the Kakad Wari forest significantly affected by the excessive deforestation by natives and it also degraded the forest soil and organic matter which disturb forest fertility.

Our Environment Protection Team invented a cooking stove that requires less than half of biomass fuel and emits less greenhouse gases. Designed with efficient ceramic lined material which is locally available, the stove improves combustion by supplying a small volume of high velocity air through a hole that increases the mixing of oxygen. These efficient stoves decrease firewood use by 40%, resulting in emissions reductions of 2-3 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent per household annually.

Now, in implementation phase; awareness and capacity building training program will be organized among the forest community particularly 200 women and youth groups (100 women, 100 youth) to make them able to manufacture a ceramic-lined, wood-burning local stove, with a compartment underneath that focuses the heat directly upward instead of in all directions like a traditional three-stone fire. This activity promotes locally made, efficient stoves to help conserve remaining forests, through women and youth manufacture efficient ceramic wood-burning stoves and sell them in their communities to replace the traditional (and inefficient) three-stone hearth which also empower them economically.

Local materials are used for stove production, which is subsidized by the sale of carbon credits. Local populations are thus incentivized to conserve the forest instead of cut it down. The women will get training in stove product quality control and its small entrepreneurship, which develop their leadership and decision making skills.

Locally manufactured efficient fire stoves absolutely reduce wood consumption in forest and help to preserve the unique vegetation, plantation and biodiversity of Moist Temperate Rainforest. The stoves have a cleaner burning process and thus decrease indoor air pollution and associated acute respiratory infections in women and children.

Moreover, savings in burning unsustainably harvested fuel wood cut down CO2 emissions and environmental friendly for both.
The objectives of the research project are as follows:

  • Promoting awareness among forest living communities to adapt efficient techniques to reduce deforestation and global warming for sustainable biodiversity
  • Helping forest living communities to protect themselves, environment, and biodiversity to adaptation of efficient energy stoves & pressure cookers
  • Enhancing positive biomass energy behavior change through information and awareness rising activities, sanitization on use of less firewood consuming stoves, empowering local youth groups to promote modern biomass utilization technology that saves energy consumption
  • Building resilience among remote communities with interventions to integrated forests management and other land resources toward combating the negative impacts of rapid environmental change

Blogpost and photo submitted by Adnan Arshad (Agriculture & Climate Change Lab, Faculty of Crop & Food Science, PMAS-Arid Agriculture University, Pakistan) – ad.uaar(at)gmail.com

The content, structure and grammar is at the discretion of the author only.


This post is published as entry #16 of our #Forests2015 blog competition. It is submitted in the “Youth” category.

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105 thoughts on “Environmental Friendly Innovations to Promote Biodiversity

  1. The conditions are similar to communities of mountains in Nepal but introduction of renewable energy, CF, improved cooking stoves has improved not only health of people also environment.

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    • Yeph! I am agree with you about the regional climatic and international climatic conditions similarly according to the IPCC 5th assessment report on current climatic fluctuation and variability on regional level. That’s needs joint coordination and meteorological data sharing for climate simulations and modeling…………

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  2. Rising temperatures are changing weather and vegetation patterns across the globe, forcing animal species to migrate to new, cooler areas in order to survive.

    The rapid nature of climate change is likely to exceed the ability of many species to migrate or adjust. Experts predict that one-fourth of Earth’s species will be headed for extinction by 2050 if the warming trend continues at its current rate.

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    • yes, and i in the last phase of drafting a youth and rural women gender policy for climate change and will present it in COP21.
      I implementing innovative plantation project in province of Punjab titled “Promoting Plantation of Olive Potential Varieties to Ensure Food Security and Soil Sustainability” funded by International Green Foundation (IGF). Under the project I and my team planting 1500 olive plants/year on marginal, degraded hilly soil, convert it into cultivated forest to overcome the environmental changes.

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    • By the latest report on the migration of wild species 5 animal species has been migrated toward the other regions and they have not the ability to adaptation high temperature and prolong drought. Pangoline is the one of the best example on it….

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  3. well, round the globe, seasons are shifting, temperatures are climbing and sea levels are rising. And meanwhile, our planet must still supply us – and all living things – with air, water, food and safe places to live. If we don’t act now, climate change will rapidly alter the lands and waters we all depend upon for survival, leaving our children and grandchildren with a very different world.

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    • Targeted forest is highly vulnerable to climate change directly alter the frequency and intensity of Cedrus deodara (deodar), Picea smithiana (spruce) plants distribution, including wildlife and invasive species. Under the project capacity building training’s of forest community particularly women and youth on forest conservation with reforestation technologies.

      Like

      • People learned about micro-catchment, eyebrow and rectangular mulch plantation techniques to rehabilitate plants after rainfalls and floods.
        The impact of the project showed significant effects on forest plants species conservation with revival of wildlife. The objective of project is to upgrading the forest management skills of locals into productive, and cooperative, enable them to make the optimal use of available natural resources with care.

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  4. Well Mr. Adnan your work is very good here in Pakistan for nature conservation. Pakistan is already among the top ten countries where unusual weather patterns were making major environment impacts and the situation might further deteriorate in the coming years if attention was not paid to issues related to climate change.

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    • From a human perspective, the rapid climate change and accelerating biodiversity loss risks human security (e.g. a major change in the food chain upon which we depend, water sources may change, recede or disappear, medicines and other resources we rely on may be harder to obtain as the plants and forna they are derived from may reduce or disappear, etc.).
      Climate change is already having an impact on biodiversity, and is projected to become a progressively more significant threat in the coming decades. Loss of Arctic sea ice threatens biodiversity across an entire biome and beyond. The related pressure of ocean acidification, resulting from higher concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, is also already being observed.

      Ecosystems are already showing negative impacts under current levels of climate change … which is modest compared to future projected changes…. In addition to warming temperatures, more frequent extreme weather events and changing patterns of rainfall and drought can be expected to have significant impacts on biodiversity.

      Like

  5. Players can answer trivia questions for bonus points. The more barley you grow, the more you can upgrade and customize your farm. But beware you don’t damage the environment in the process

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    • climate change is not for the only few countries, it’s a global issue and we have to work jointly to cope with it. For CC mitigation and adaptation there is a regional data base required to prepare policies.

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    • Climate change will likely increase the risk of drought in some areas and the risk of extreme precipitation and flooding in others. Increased temperatures would alter the timing of snowmelt, affecting the seasonal availability of water. Although many trees are resilient to some degree of drought, increases in temperature could make future droughts more damaging than those experienced in the past. In addition, drought increases wildfire risk, since dry trees and shrubs provide fuel to fires. Drought also reduces trees’ ability to produce sap, which protects them from destructive insects such as pine beetles

      Like

  6. Why Pakistan is extremely vulnerable to the impacts of climate change? So many countries are facing the same problem. Pakistan is not alone

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    • All the developed countries like USA, China producing maximum CO2 as compare to developing countries, Those countries are progress in other business and development projects as compare to agriculture. Pakistan and most of the other developing countries are dependent more than 65% on agriculture directly or indirectly and climate directly hit agriculture, water, forestry, sea, and nature as well. Adverts climatic conditions and global warming are the biggest threat to agriculture and food security.

      Like

    • One of the most important thing in which Pakistan need to reform is a policy making and its implementation for all local and national levels, we have lake of water storage units, shortage of power, individual interest and short term planning for future.

      Like

  7. It’s easy to say don’t cut trees, but you have to find something which can help the villagers to replace firewood, otherwise, how can they survive? What’s ur methods?

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    • Dear Wanying Wang; We are trying to uplift the communities with some other mediums for cook food as compare to firewood. We are drafting policy to facilitate the forest living community with natural gas and motivate them to save trees.

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    • Pressure cooking is far more efficient than using multiple pots on separate burners, and can result in significant energy savings. This is because pressure cookers lend themselves to one-pot cooking recipes. And since foods require less cooking time with pressure cookers, less energy is needed to prepare meals.

      Like

    • Really Sobia, This is not for only Pakistan, this is for all world, but at the same time developing countries like to us highly vulnerable to #climate #change, although these efforts are very little in observation but their impact will be quite visible for whole globe particularly South Asia

      Like

  8. Ds z awsm…you have covered smthng dat’s often neglected..gr8 work..keep going…may you achieve more n more..!!

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    • Dear I really happy to see the positive response of youth and young scientists and stakeholders. Its very good for to do link these efforts with local govt. departments and non-Govt. institutions. It also build capacity of young foresters according to regional climatic variation for forestation

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    • Right! Extraction of naturally diseased , dead, dry, wind fallen and over mature trees is the most important activity required for silvicultural management of forests . It allows and facilitate the hindered natural regeneration beside providing timber and fuel wood for human needs.

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    • Forests are colonies of Plants (dominantly Trees) having a life cycle spanning from reproduction to death
      Among the tangible goods and services of plants , the timber fuelwood ,food & fodder fulfilling the basic needs of food cloth and shelter , are ,therefore , of dominant , immediate and preferred interest ,for the human population particularly those inhabiting the forest areas.

      Like

    • things going quite different regarding climate, we are mainly facing soil erosion and degradation due to high intensive rainfalls. I need your technical expertise to control soil texture and structure.

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    • Dear Fahad, currently, due to lake of funding and men power my organization is limited to work for noble assignment. But we sure these whistle blowers become the huge team

      Like

    • Many aspects of projected climate change will likely affect forest growth and productivity. Three examples are described below: increases in carbon dioxide (CO2), increases in temperature, and changes in precipitation.

      Like

  9. boss you are doing a good work, the main cause of all those problem is high amount of carbon (iv) oxide gas and florochrocarbon in the atmosphere due to deforestation, forest fires etc.floods couses mostly due to greenhouse effects due high amount of these gases resulting to abnormal rain like alimino rain, hailstone etc these forces water in ocean to rise so to rivers causing those floods, so I would like inform you boss to encourage people to conserve and plant more trees then they should use energy saving jiko and stoves to avoid use of firewood, key thing hear is planting trees and conserve them

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    • your suggestions will be highly practical and we are promoting the same thing among the forest living community to address awareness among forest living communities to adapt efficient techniques to reduce deforestation and global warming for sustainable biodiversity

      Like

    • In next year we will go for the building resilience among remote communities with interventions to integrated forests management and other land resources toward combating the negative impacts of rapid environmental changes

      Like

    • Initially we are implementing some projects to aware the locals about forest and working with forest department to form a policy and upgrade the legislation. Also helping forest living communities to protect themselves, environment, and biodiversity to adaptation of efficient energy stoves & pressure cookers,

      Like

  10. A worth reading article I must say. Adnan has pointed out a very significant issue prevailing in our communities and I strongly hope his research and proposed interventions will bring about a positive change to foster the lives of forest living communities.

    I wish him good luck with his ambitions!

    Like

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