The Centre for Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences, School of Physics, University of Hyderabad organised a webinar on Saturday, 5 June 2021on the theme of “Restoring Ecosystems” to commemorate the World Environmental Day-2021.
The Centre has invited three eminent teachers/scientists from India and abroad to deliver the lectures on the theme.
Prof. Raghu Murtugdde, University of Maryland, USA gave an illuminating lecture on “Terrestrial and Marine Ecosystems in Service of Climate Adaptation and Mitigation”. He said that India’s options for climate mitigation and adaptation have to focus on managing the hydroclimatic hazards on land. He also stressed upon natural climate actions-cum-solutions, such as, saving and growing natural protections such as forests, mangroves, coral reefs, and wetlands. For example, having mangroves will not only sequester CO2, but also act as natural barriers to the winds from the tropical cyclones, which are intensifying in recent period due to global warming. He further highlighted important aspects ofagriculture and aquaculture, fisheries, India’s investment in weather, climate, and ocean forecasts, etc., which need to be addressed to protect food, water, energy and health security.
Dr. T. Srinivas Kumar, Director, Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS), Hyderabad gave a second lecture on “Monitoring and Forecasting of the Ocean Environment”. He highlighted the role of INCOIS in the fields of operational oceanography such as development and operationalization of early warning systems for coastal multi-hazards through bulletins, Potential Fishing Zone Advisories, Multi Hazard Vulnerability Mapping, Coral Reef Bleaching Alert System, Tsunami Early Warning Centre, etc. He further illustrated the efforts takenby the INCOIS to monitor Ocean environment, the outputs from which also critically improve theforecasting skills of atmospheric phenomenon such as tropical cyclones.
Prof. M.N.V. Prasad, Emeritus Professor, School of Life Sciences, University of Hyderabad gave thethird lecture on “Ecosystem Restoration – Recent Trends in Technology for Sustainable Development”. He has touched upon different components of Earth System Science such as geosphere (soil science), atmosphere, hydrosphere and biosphere. He presented various ideas for restoration in the background of increasing air and water, and groundwater contamination. He introduced latest IOT-basedwater treatment technologies, environmental bioremediation technologies to alleviate challenges in sustainable maintenance/conservation ofwetlands, agriculture and fertilizers, and ground water contamination. He also espoused innovative ideas of using various plants that absorb and seal heavy metals, etc. Further, he has discussed recent trends in environmental technologies, andcalled for increased funding for environmental studies, and studies on reduction of freshwater footprint, ecosystem services of mangroves, etc.
There was an overwhelming participation of teachers, research scholars and students from the university. Several scientists and students from various national institutions in Hyderabad and outside participated. Each lecture was concluded with a lively discussion.